Catawba Falls Trail

EASY 451 reviews
#2 of 164 trails in

Catawba Falls Trail is a 2.1 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Old Fort, North Carolina that features a waterfall and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
2.1 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
305 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dog friendly

kid friendly

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

bird watching

forest

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

muddy

rocky

scramble

Easy, short hike to pretty waterfalls. Low effort, high yield. Large parking lot right at the trailhead. SAFETY WARNING: There have been deaths and many injuries caused by hikers falling from the falls. Please do not climb on slick rocks and in close vicinity of the falls (upper and lower) - a photo opportunity is not worth a life.

1 day ago

Great hike with amazing waterfalls. We went off the path several times to take pictures along the way. Be prepared to get your shoes a little muddy and a little wet. At one point we had to cross over a good size creek. We stepped on the rocks on the left of the trail. I used a stick to keep me steady so I didnt fall in. The big fall are not far from this point. I would definitely do this hike again.
If you plan on bringing a nice camera I would bring a waterproof bag for it because of the creek crossover.

2 days ago

awesome hike worth the climb ! just do it!

hiking
6 days ago

amazing hike with amazing views. well worth the trip!

hiking
13 days ago

Love it when you get to the waterfall hike up next to it, it’s hard but worth it

hiking
20 days ago

Hiked this with my parents and young siblings. Oldest 51, youngest 11. It was great! We all loved it!

hiking
1 month ago

Not strenuous at all, but a nice wide, relatively flat walk along the riverside with smaller falls appearing first and then a beautiful high set of falls at the end of mile. Take your mom.

hiking
1 month ago

A fun hike. A bit muddy but we enjoyed it. Kids did better than myself who slipped a few times. There's a small river to go through...seemed a lot didn't realize this. Wear proper hiking shoes or an extra set.

Waterfall was really nice and tucked away. A bit crowded for a few moments. Overall a cool hike.

1 month ago

Great, easy hike. Beautiful the whole way. My kids love going there. However there are lots of snakes in the summer

1 month ago

Nice easy hike that follows creek up to falls. Super muddy yesterday 1/1/19 due to all of the rain. Don’t forget your boots

1 month ago

Amazing hike for very little effort! Awesome family hike!!! Highly recommend

1 month ago

Easy hike to the falls. Today the trails were very muddy due to all of the recent rain. The new bridges definitely help with the water crossings.

1 month ago

Short and easy trail for those who do not want serious hiking. Very muddy December 29 due to lots of rain.

hiking
2 months ago

Short easy hike to an amazing waterfall. Some interesting history to read at the trail head regarding the falls. Went on a early weekday morning and had the trail all to myself which was nice. Some rock hoping required to get a good view of the falls but it's worth it!

2 months ago

Intense ending if you attempt it

2 months ago

Easy, short hike to pretty waterfalls. Low effort, high yield. Large parking lot right at the trail head. Way too crowded on a weekend though, I passed seriously no less than a hundred people coming and going. Very muddy as well because of recent rains. If you’re coming to Asheville from the east this would be a great pit stop (a couple miles off I-40) but I otherwise wouldn’t go out of my way to hike it again.

hiking
2 months ago

Nice easy walk through the woods. Trails were in good condition and well marked. It was wet and a little sloppy in places. My 9 year old had no problems and I managed carrying a 3 year old in a pack.

hiking
2 months ago

Great trail for families and fairly easy for older hikers. I’m 59 and had no problems. I even traversed down to the river for a photo opportunity.

2 months ago

Beautiful hike along the river with countless smaller falls. Lots to explore. Very wet so the hiking poles were a big help, but the water made the fall extra amazing! Don’t miss this one!

hiking
3 months ago

Great for your guests. Amazing view.

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful waterfall. Lots of rocks and roots along the path and a little crowded but it was a weekend! Overall very nice hike!

3 months ago

Super easy trail with an amazing water fall. Avoid this trail on the weekends as it can be extremely crowded. Quick hike with a rewarding view.

hiking
3 months ago

Worth the hike. Easy trail and beautiful views. The way in is an upward climb and seemed more moderate to me because I was carrying my toddler in a pack all the way up, so I’m sure it’s much easier than it felt

3 months ago

Beautiful trail and easy to navigate. Definitely worth going the whole way up to the falls. We brought our dogs and they loved it.

hiking
3 months ago

AWESOME HIKE! I'm not big on waterfalls but this one is WORTH IT! There are several waterfalls along the trail but the one at the end of the trial is a beauty.

hiking
3 months ago

We are flatlanders from Florida in our late 50s, early 60s and found this to be a comfortable hike. 2 bridges and one creek crossing. Very few roots and rocks to navigate. Go early to avoid crowds. Sunrise or shortly thereafter. It was crowded on our way out.

3 months ago

Great last min idea to get some outdoor time while vacationing in Asheville. Waterfall is beautiful.

hiking
3 months ago

Great hike for our whole family! My 3.5 year old did the entire thing independently and my 65 year old FIL loved it. Took us about 2 hours total. Don't stop until you get to the top oast the second bridge... You will definitely know when you have hit the big, gorgeous falls at the top. Trail had some parts where you had to walk over large rocks in the creek and at the falls you have to maneuver over through big boulders to get the best view...DO IT!

hiking
3 months ago

Easy hike to two major waterfalls. The trek to the Upper Falls was not as dangerous as I read that it would be. Piece of cake. Close to a 4 mile round trip.

3 months ago

Easy out and back hike. Don’t a bad waterfall considering our simple the trail is. High traffic though, even during the week.

hiking
3 months ago

My review is from the perspective of an amateur landscape photographer.

I was pleasantly surprised by these falls. The lower falls are very photogenic and easily accessible. There are a number of good opportunities for different compositions, assuming you are comfortable with some easy rock scrambling and the slight possibility of getting your feet wet. the only downside is the trail is very popular (great scenery and relatively easy hike) and it may be difficult to setup your shot without waiting for others to clear the immediate area. But it's worth the wait.

There are also some nice spots along the trail to photograph the stream and some minor cascades.

Overall a nice outing with many opportunities for waterfall photography.

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