Explore the most popular river trails in Nantahala National Forest with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Great hike! Other than a few rattlesnakes it was spectacular!

An incredible hike with an incredible view! Being from South Florida, the elevation was quite difficult to adjust to but the view was definitely worth it! Also totally recommend hiking up to slide down turtle back falls.

Super fun trail, with great views if you enjoy waterfalls, and natural streams! It had a good amount of hills to walk up so be advised young children (under like 6) could get tuckered out on the hike back. Overall 4 mile round trip.

Went a while back really enjoyed! A lot of people!

We have been to this group of trails several times, and love the forest and lake views here. Just yesterday, May 10, 2018, we started out on the marked left-hand loop from the parking spot on the All Trails map, and ended up cutting across the interior of the loop on a trail marked with blue painted tree roots. About half way across the interior, on either side of the trail, we found lady slippers in full bloom, light of the setting sun falling across them...a rare sighting of this endangered species. See photo.

Mostly uphill. Trails are not clearly marked so it's easy to get confused. Trail had lots of tree stumps and rocks. Great bathing area for dogs and kids once you get to the Schoolhouse Waterfall.
Not a huge summit but a great place to hike to just for the view.

Beautiful falls, especially after several days of heavy rain. Not a rough hike, but definitely merits a moderate rating. Great places to rest by the falls and take in the view from a well-placed hammock.

Was a beautiful and amazing hike. last 15 minutes got me but well worth the veiw!!!

Wow! The falls are so impressive. The hike was super easy — all downhill until you get to the area just before falls. It’s just a short climb that’s mostly fueled by the adrenaline you get from the sounds of rushing water and the anticipation of seeing the waterfall. I was worried that the return trip would be exhausting since it’s mostly uphill to the parking lot but the incline is gradual. Next time I would plan a trail run here!

We've done a good number of trails in the area and this one is still hands down our favorite. It's a bit of a harder hike if you're not in shape/prepared, but 100% worth it. These are still the coolest falls that we've seen in a long time and I would absolutely do this hike again in a heartbeat. This app also says you cannot take dogs on it, but we took our lab and ran into no issues with that. We even saw other dogs on the trail.

Rather easy, less than 1000 feet elevation gain trail.
We were here on a weekend , so met some people but it was not crowded.
Beautiful waterfalls.
The whole trail sparkles! You need to witness it in order to understand it.
Be prepared for several water crossings specially in wet season. .

backpacking
1 month ago

Great hike with wonderful views from on top of the wall to below the wall. Good amount of campsites, some with water sources and some without. Only problem is the bears in the area. They will come into your camp and they are accustom to human interaction, so trying to scare them off is a bit more difficult. Just come prepared for bears if you are camping and it should be fine.

Rainbow and Turtleback are gorgeous. lots of stair climbing and elevation changes (103 floors per my fitbit) but its all worth it. My 8 year old and I enjoyed the trail, waterfalls and all the cool spots to walk out on the rocks in the river.

Nice trail, lots of up hill & steps, but pretty waterfalls at the end. ~4 miles, 1.5 hours

We walked several of the loop trails. We had the place totally to ourselves except for various birds to include a wild turkey.

Had a fantastic time here. We hiked all the way to the end of the trail seeing all 3 waterfalls. It was Thursday so very few people were on the trail. Had lunch at the top if rainbow falls. It was an amazing view.

Nice trail. Not too strenuous. Tracked it at 6 miles total. There were plenty of children doing this trail with no problem. There are places where I would not have a dog with no leash. The views at the end are well worth the trip.

Our first hike on this trail. The waterfall is beautiful and worth the hike.

Ended up doing this trail by accident... but so happy we did! We went around to Little Green summit first and then down to the falls. The trail was definitely easy going for the first 3+ miles. A nice/steep climb to the top and then some AMAZING views. Got a little turned around on the summit thanks to some careless wandering but never got too far off path. The entire 4 hours we were in the area we only saw 4 other groups of people which made the experience even more perfect. Can't wait to come back for a weekend of camping/hiking.

First time hiking out here and enjoyed it a lot. It may have been raining, not too hard but enough to keep us wet but well worth it.

It’s a paved greenway near a river for running, biking, walking, or playing. The one mile section has a small park for the kids and a dog park but be careful crossing the road during our construction time going the other direction.

Beautiful hike to an awesome, powerful waterfall, well worth the hike!

It was awesome!! When hiking you will come to a path to your left... I saved that for last. It was Stairway Falls... Beautiful. So I kept going to right ... First Fall was Rainbow... keep going you will come to Turtleback... keep going you will come to Drift Falls!! All worth the hike!!

backpacking
3 months ago

This place is great with multiple campsites along the way. Take every side route because that’s where most of the waterfalls and balds are. The place is beautiful. There is a bald on salt rock that isn’t labeled on any maps I say and it’s a beautiful view must go to that.

Great place close to house. Short hike.

A great hike, especially in the morning! There were a few people on the trail but not many until I was heading back. Right now there is a lot of mud around the falls so wear the right shoes or you may get stuck or slide. There were a few areas that looked like other trail paths but I didn’t explore them. If you use the map from this app it’ll take you in the right direction.

Just a paved Greenway. Fine place for locals to get exercise, nothing for sight seeing. Don't drive to Franklin just to see this.

Always a fun hike or even drive! One day we drove to various spots in order to view PantherTop fire tower. I am obsessed in finding all areas in the Murphy area where we can see that tower from a distance!

walking
4 months ago

I love this waterfall! Once you find it, it is easy to get to. It is close to my home so I like to take friends to it.

hiking
5 months ago

Short hike. Great views! Steep elevation change.

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