High Shoals Falls Loop Trail

MODERATE 107 reviews

High Shoals Falls Loop Trail is a 2.5 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Connellys Springs, North Carolina that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
2.5 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
616 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dogs on leash

kid friendly

birding

hiking

nature trips

walking

forest

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

Wonderful creek, 80 ft waterfall, mountain vista, nice woodland walk This is probably the most popular hike at South Mountains State Park. Hike during the week to avoid the crowds. First, pick up a trail map from the ranger station. Follow either the Hemlock or HQ trail away from the parking area and upstream. After about half a mile you will see signs for High Shoals Falls. Approximately one mile from the parking area and after climbing a lot of stairs you will reach the veiwing platform for the falls. Continue ascending stairs to the top of the falls. Be sure and stay on the marked trail. There have been several deaths here. Continue following the trail until it intersects with Upper Falls Trail. Turn right on Upper Falls. After ascending a moderate grade look for an opening to the left. Here you will have nice views to the South. Continue on Upper Falls Trail until you come to a junction with HQ trail. Turn right on HQ trail and descend to Shinny Creek campsites. Follow HQ trail back to the Jacob Fork Parking Area.

hiking
12 days ago

17 days ago

this is great hiking trail! I'm from San Diego, Ca. I'm on vacation and staying in Charlotte. This is excalty what I wanted out of hiking experience being in North Carolina. the only hard part was the walking up the stairs but thats about 15 to 20 minuted of walking up the stairs. take a break and take in the beautiful views. no rush on the stairs!

1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful hike. Lots of rocks for kids, and adults to hop around on!

hiking
1 month ago

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1 month ago

1 month ago

1 month ago

Awesome place to spend the day.

hiking
2 months ago

2 months ago

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2 months ago

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2 months ago

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2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

Nice easy hike to overlook of falls. After that the assent on stairs to the top of the falls and again on the backside trail is tough. I would rate as high moderate in difficulty. Most likely the falls side will be crowded.

hiking
2 months ago

Pretty sure the park map rates this one as strenuous instead of moderate, but nonetheless it was a great hike and the falls was very rewarding!

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

I came to North Carolina to visit my uncle. He took me hiking on High Shoals Falls Loop this morning. It was great! Not too long of a hike but will leave you feeling like you've hiked half a day. Everyone we passed on the trails were really friendly. The trails are clearly marked and the majority of the trail was cool and shaded. This is definitely one of my favorite trails I've hiked!

hiking
3 months ago

Great hike! We did the High Shoals Loop and camped at the Upper Falls campground..strenuous backpacking up, but worth the effort. Enjoy!

hiking
3 months ago

The morning started off with thick fog, but we saved the falls for the end of the hike. By the time we had added the Chestnut Knob, Horseridge, Possum, Shinny and HQ sections, the fog lifted enough to give us a great view of this impressive falls. The air is misty down through the ravine, and there is a cool cave right next to the falls. The highlight of South Mountains, High Shoals can get pretty crowded, but well worth a hike. If you want to get away from the crowds, do some of the other trails which take you to high knobs or across stream crossings. Enjoy!

hiking
3 months ago