Glen Falls Trail

HARD 115 reviews
#6 of 87 trails in

Glen Falls Trail is a 2.4 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Highlands, North Carolina that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

2.4 miles
784 feet
Out & Back

dogs on leash



nature trips

trail running





wild flowers

Directions from Highlands, NC: From the intersection of US 64 and SR 106, drive 1.6 miles southwest on SR 106 to the USFS sign, Glen Falls Scenic Area on the left. Turn onto SR 1618 and drive 1 mile to the end and the Glen Falls parking area. For the second trailhead of Chinquapin, stay on SR 106 for 3 miles from US 64 and drive to a pullover on the left side. Look for the large rock in the middle.

1 day ago

Trail is well marked,and maintained. No water access from viewing platforms, but nice area to spash around at the bottom. The trek back to the top is most challenging, and the last leg of the trail has a bunch of tree roots. Very diverse group on the trail, everyone was fine though, moderate.

3 days ago

An easy little hike with several different platforms to admire the falls. The last fall is not nearly as impressive as the first two.

4 days ago

Nice easy trip down. Beautiful falls. Make sure you continue down to see all of the viewing areas. Saw a black snake tumble down the falls only to find rest on a rock a little shaken but fine. Nice to see from afar.

22 days ago

The picturesque view from the precipice of the first falls is a must! Mid level and base are nice too. The last leg was not worth the effort, downed trees, rocky and not much at the bottom.

26 days ago

Glen Falls is absolutely amazing, there are several spots to stop and look at the different tiers of the falls. The trail is well maintained, except for quite a bit of mud around the viewing areas. It’s a extreme decline down some nicely placed steps, but every step you take have to take back up. The walk back is not for the faint at heart.

1 month ago

I have hiked this trail a few times and almost any trail that has a waterfall at the end gets a great rating from me. I went past the base of the falls as another reviewer posted but once upon the downed trees and such turned around. It is uphill all the way back and there are a lot of tree roots underfoot so watch your step. Have seen people doing it in flip flops. Crazy!

1 month ago

We did this after hiking Scaly Mountain so my review maybe slightly flawed by the fact that my kids had had enough by this point.
Overall, it's a nice hike but I was a little irritated that I continued on the trail past the pool at the bottom for another half a mile, climbing over downed trees, only to be told by a group coming in the opposite direction that there was nothing down there except a campground. Don't hike past the post that has the word "falls" etched into it.

1 month ago

I love this trail. It’s downhill for the trip back & then all uphill for the hike back. But it’s good for an afternoon hike or a hike when you don’t have all day to hike.

1 month ago

It had been raining a few days so naturally the trail was wet and muddy. Very green, lots of trees and vegitaion, it was a beautiful hike. The falls are pretty sweet.

2 months ago

This trail was very cool- you start off on the top of a waterfall and zig zag your way down. You run into the waterfall about 3-4 times at different spots on the way down and get to play in a pool at the bottom of the falls. This was a perfect hike to bring a water dog on!

3 months ago

Great trail, falls are beautiful with 3 or 4 different viewpoints. Keep going down, it’s worth the work to climb back up.

4 months ago

We found it by accident but definitely loved it.

6 months ago

Perfect distance for what we were looking for. Took the dog and have great views at the top - there is not Summit sign to say you made it but once the trail starts heading down you’ll know when to stop.

7 months ago

In my opinion, the best way to come to the falls is from the bottom of the mountain. It's way cooler than just walking down the stairs.

8 months ago

It's worth the hike. Beautiful falls. Hard hike back up, man made steps all the way.

8 months ago

Glen Falls is a beautiful hike, especially during autumn. I consider it a moderate hike, not difficult. There are a couple of waterfalls and a nice wide area atop one of the Falls where you can venture onto rocks and gentle waters for wonderful views of the Blue Valley. For a pleasant outing, hike the trail to the very bottom along an old riverbed to a small stream then back out.

8 months ago

Then Glen Falls hike is a nice path that you see a couple nice waterfall views. Please read below if you're interested in the Chinquapin Trail:
Chinquapin Mountain Trail

Highlands, NC

The 3.2 mile Chinquapin Mountain Trail starts at the Glen Falls parking area. Take the trail on the right and cross the East Fork on a large log bridge. The trail continues along a tributary, crossing it several times on rocks and logs. This can be wet and slippery.

The second trailhead for Chinquapin Mountain starts on SR 106 and makes a 1/4 mile descent to its junction with the trail from Glen Falls.

After the junction of the two trails, the Chinquapin Trail ascends to the top on a set of 10 switchbacks. On the ridge line at the top there are three overlooks with views of Blue Valley. The first two are near the trail, while the third is reached on a steep 1/4 mile trail. Continue on the trail as it begins its descent. Before a "T" intersection there are two additional overlooks which have short trails. At the intersection, turn right on a fairly level trail section to the sixth switchback to Chinquapin. This intersection completes the loop. Backtrack the remainder of the way.

9 months ago

Awesome short hike!

9 months ago

I found it difficult to navigate around fallen trees. There are at least 5-6 of these types of obstacles to circumnavigate. There was a tree down with a root base of at least 10-12 feet high and even wider to climb around. We are average hikers. Perhaps a more seasoned hiker would enjoy. We got around the obstacles but it sure slowed us up. Nice trail up Chinquapin mtn but be prepared. View at top was very breathtaking. It really needs maintenance!

9 months ago

there are lots of trees down right now from irma but you can definitely navigate the trail. there are three viewing points and the second is the best, I wouldn't call it a hard hike perhaps more moderate definitely a beautiful fall.

10 months ago

Great trail wasn't too difficult. I'd rate it moderate. Had some great views of the waterfall. Highly recommend.

10 months ago

Great trail. Plenty of switchbacks to help those not in great shape, or those getting back in shape! There are three distinct falls along the 1 mile trek to the bottom. The middle of the trail is the hardest portion, but I would rate this trail as moderate rather than hard.

Plenty of shade, nice and cool under the trees, and you can hear the falls for most of the hike. I hiked it at 10:00AM and there were only a few others along the trail, but when I got back a couple of hours later, there were at least 20 people scattered on various parts of the hike.

11 months ago

Hard but well worth it!

11 months ago

Beautiful hike. Be sure to make it all the way to the end, where there is a campsite across the stream area. The way up from that last part will really get your heart rate going. The rest of the hike is truly easy to moderate level.

11 months ago

Did the trail with several kids who enjoyed playing in the water at the bottom. There were quite a few groups on the trail. Would rate this trail as moderate and plenty of good spots for photos. A great pick for a family day hike.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Great trail with wonderful photo opportunities. Hiked it in June, and it got very crowded around noon.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Excellent hike, good climb, amazing views and very peaceful. We hiked from our camping spot in the Blue Valley Dispersed Campground. It is very lush in the forest. 4 different views of falls. We only saw 1 other on the trail.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Awesome waterfall hike! My daughter and I was down and back in 45 minutes but it is so peaceful and beautiful that we could have spent hours there. This is one of our favorite hikes!

Monday, March 27, 2017

Beautiful views on many different levels. Great photo opportunities. Pack a snack and plenty of water.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Soooo much fun

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