Ellicott Rock Trail

MODERATE 12 reviews
#30 of 74 trails in

Ellicott Rock Trail is a 7 mile out and back trail located near Highlands, North Carolina that features a river. The trail is rated as moderate and primarily used for hiking, trail running, camping, and fishing. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

7.0 miles
583 feet
Out & Back

dogs on leash




trail running





This wilderness area spans over 9,000 acres. The Elliot Rock Trail is a hiking trail only. The trail leads down the Chattooga River Gorge and to the Chattooga River. It offers great hiking, primitive camping, and fishing. You can hike to where N.C., S.C. & GA meet on the Chattooga River.

8 months ago

We just backpacked and camped there this weekend. We really enjoyed it! The trail does have a number of downed trees, some small and some not so small, across the trail. It was a little over 3 miles from parking just beyond the trailhead to the camping spots along the river. The first 1 mile in is mostly uphill and the last 2 miles are mostly down hill. Obviously the hike out is more challenging. There are 2 very nice camp spots by the river. Ellicott Rock is actually a little further down the trail- marked by a pink ribbon on the right. We thought the marker was out on the island, but now I believe the rock is directly below the ribbon, on the bank (after looking at another post on here). I think we were standing in it . We did not hike further down the trail. The first 3 miles do not have nice camp sites, besides the 2 on the river. I'm not sure what else is down stream. Bring a fishing pole - lots of fish in the river! Great hike and camping- would definitely do it again!

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Once you understand this rock, etched by the foremost topographer of his time, your excitement will match its historical significance. It's difficult to find, as it mark's the undoing of Georgia and both Carolinas. A war was fought and people died over its disputed location. The hike follows the mighty Chattooga River upstream. The rock is on the south bank facing the river. A treasured hike. Feel the history.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Trail is rather uneventful - pleasant walk in the woods, lots of rhododendron for shade in warmer months, not much of a view unless leaves have fallen. The elevation is noteworthy, but the switchbacks are so gradual, it isn't bothersome. A few trees down that required some navigating. Despite not being blazed, was easy to follow down to the river. Some sections were quite muddy - had a hard rain night before... When you reach "river level", decent campsite in front of you. Recommend looking at pics of the rocks so you can recognize them ahead of time. Saw some coyote & fox scat.

Saturday, August 01, 2015

The trail condition was rugged as it is poorly maintained. Bring a machete! The rocks are very hard to find.

Sunday, February 08, 2015

The trail itself is easy and follows an old forest service road. There are a lot of obstacles that makes it feel like an obstacle course at times, but it is still passable. There are no blazes that mark the trail but keep your eyes open for pink or orange tape on some trees. Commissioner Rock and Ellicott Rock are very tricky to find.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Fantastic trail for a light overnighter. Beautiful views and great opportunities for fish for a meal on the Chattooga River!

2 months ago

2 months ago

9 months ago

10 months ago

Monday, November 02, 2015

Friday, November 15, 2013