Downhill to the falls. Uphill on the way back. Not to difficult terrain. Beautiful falls.

Great hike with beautiful waterfall, we did the route counterclockwise which we would recommend for trail running as the footing was more stable for the descent. Coming back up Cornelius Creek presented some creek crossing challenges due to the volume of water.

Beautiful views and well maintained trail.

Decent, short hike. The falls aren't amazing or anything.

Very scenic and beautiful after a days rain. We did the loop. Started on Apple Orchard Falls trail, turned onto Cornelius Creek then the Appalachian. My Apple Watch said we traveled near 8.5 miles, much longer than we expected. Going up the Cornelius was challenging and we took lots of breaks. Apple orchard falls was well worth it, though from here on our we will probably just hike to the falls and back.

Good hike and short backpacking trip if your looking to get a way for the night. Been a while since I've been able to do this and just moving to the area it was a good way to get back into hiking/backpacking and camping. Ran into a couple of snakes on the trail near the falls so just be on the lookout.

The first part of the trail was amazing, lots of beautiful sights and picture opportunities. After you get past the Falls and to the next Parking lot and turn on Cornealus Creek trail get ready for the incline! Especially when the Creek trail meets the AT. According to my GPS it was an 8.6mile hike not 7. If I go back I'll just hike down the Falls then turn around and go back. won't do the loop again

First so we did the short one and walk on the connect trail which only make it 5.6 mile and went in on rt 56.. the first half was ALL up hills/mountains which kick my group butt, then on the way down it was almost easier but the rock was very loose which make me move slow. I will do this hike again but be really to do some work.. on the way down we was about to get into the creek with some swimming holes but the water was cold..

Beautiful views and is on the AT trail for a mile and a half. Highly recommended but bring plenty of water since it does get hot along the ridgeline.

High water flooded streams, heavy rain night before. Tried to follow loop trail but lost trail at the falls right at bridges . We were hiking from bottom up apple orchard trail and return Cornelius trail.

This loop is not marked, and people should know this before beginning this venture. It was a long walk on a path that you will make on your own. Very fun if this is your sort of thing. Bring extra water, its slow moving in many areas. You will cross the stream several times as you make your way down the side of the mountain. I would not recommend this for a beginner or someone without a map or gps. If you just want to do the marble yard, do the out and and back..

It was a good hike. I would start at the bottom lot and not the top if we did it again. The falls are beautiful.

Beautiful hike. The first part is downhill and you walk along the developing stream from its inception to a raging waterfall. You cross over it several times on bridges. At the bottom of the valley you walk in wild Appalachia along the river. The last portion is very difficult with a sheer vertical climb. A slight break is given as you merge with the Appalachian Trail. Beautiful hike, a little bit of everything

Climb your way to the top!

Great Trail, make sure you see the top of the hike. Well worth it.

Great hike for exploring where others don't go

Really great hike! Loved being next to the creek most of the way. There are many opportunities to see little hidden waterfalls and pools. The Apple Orchard Falls was also really impressive. If you choose the loop trail, it's well worth it. Starting with the AOFT trail as the first part of the loop, be prepared for a pretty steady incline for the last couple miles, coming back Cornelius Spur.

So pretty & so worth it! The hike down is easy, as you're going down hill, but coming up is a bit challenging. Worth it for the view!

beautiful waterfalls. You will love it.

I was looking for a trail within one hour drive (around) from Roanoke, about 8 miles long. The Sulphur Springs trail seems good, but a little under my goal. Looking at the map, I decided to do this loop, using the Appalachian Trail, the Sulphur Springs Trail, and the Petites Gap road to come back to the parking.
I find it well balanced, with a first part climbing easily on the ridge, then a long descent to the junction of Sulphur Springs Trail and Petites Gap Road. Then a moderate climbing back to the car. There are a few places with an overlook, perfect to take a break and have some food, for instance!
Not to crowded, but in October its not a surprise...

Totally worth the pain. Amazing!

This is a nice trail. We just hiked the portion from the parkway Sunset or Sunrise overlook to the falls and back. It was about 2.5 miles total for this section. You hike down first, so it's obviously steep on the way back up.

I think this trail is located near Buchanan in Botetourt County, not Bedford. It has been a few years for me so I am ready to go again. I have hiked it from the parkway down to the falls and I have hiked it up to the falls. From the bottom it is about an 8 mile round trip. It is one of my favorite hikes in the Roanoke area. Make sure you go after a lot of rain because the falls are so much better!

Did this loop in May 2015. The circuit named above (AOF and Cornelius Creek) is not nearly that long. If you start from the bottom, it's a little more than 5 miles - just guessing. We saw a couple of parking areas there. However, we started from Sunset Field overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway (mile 78.4). That makes it a little more than 7 miles. From the bottom, the description we had read used the Apple Orchard Fire Road. But if you start at the top, there is extra distance on a connector trail (just more of the Cornelius trail) and the AT. Either way, it's a spectacular hike. Both AOF and Cornelius follow creeks with innumerable little cascades on them. And the weekend of our hike saw Rhododendron in full bloom (mountain laurel looked to be a few days behind). The main falls are 200 feet. That section of the trail has many steps, as you would expect on a sheer drop that creates such a waterfall. From the Parkway, we descended those steps, meaning we were going down the steepest part. If that sounds good to you, be sure to do this loop in counterclockwise fashion (all lefts). The Cornelius trail is a longer, more steady grade. No matter what direction you take, this is a fantastic hike. Not to be missed!

Great hike. We did the out and back from the Parkway. Perfect hike for the kids to try out their new packs!

This is one of my favorite hikes/runs and is part of the Promise Land 50k course. I park at Sunset Field and head down the Apple Orchard Falls Trail to the AT. Turn left on the AT, go about 1.2 miles and then right at the sign for Cornelius Creek. The Cornelius Creek Trail is very runnable. There is a somewhat confusing intersection where the trail crosses the Apple Orchard road. It appears you should go straight across to continue on the trail, but really you should turn left. If you look left, you will see the blue blazes for Cornelius Creek. If you make the mistake and go straight, very soon the "trail" will end... where I guess most people realize their mistake and turn around.

After you get to the bottom of Cornelius Creek at North Creek Road, you take the Apple Orchard Falls trail back up. What to remember is, don't go over the bridges to the left. Always stay right. I ended this track when we reached the AT again because we then continued our hike north on the AT this particular day. We ascended Apple Orchard Mountain via the AT all the way to the radar base and then ran down the parkway back to Sunset Field. I didn't want that showing up in the track, though. I think my GPS lost a bit of mileage because I believe this hike (if I had continued the final 0.2 to the parking lot) should read about 7.5 miles. That is what the signage on the trail seems to indicate.

The scenery is very beautiful on this trail and I love it. Promise Land 50K is my favorite ultra race and the Cornelius Creek Trail is my favorite part of it.

You can do this hike from the Blue Ridge Parkway. Less than 3 miles one way. Beautiful waterfall, just can't miss this one. Have nice deck with seats to suit and enjoyed. Don't forget your camera.

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