Looking Glass Rock Trail

HARD 744 reviews
#1 of 156 trails in

Looking Glass Rock Trail is a 6.1 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Brevard, 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.

DISTANCE
6.1 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1,706 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dog friendly

birding

camping

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

Directions from Brevard, NC: Travel US 276 northwest for approximately 5 miles, then turn left (toward the Pisgah Center for Wildlife Education) just before Looking Glass Falls. The Looking Glass Rock Trailhead will be on the right.

hiking
1 day ago

Great hike. Was challenging at points but nothing crazy, was able to hike the whole thing going up without stopping. Very narrow at points so you will have to move to the side if someone is coming. Parking gets tight but you can park on the street. The only place to go to the bathroom is at the visitors lodge fyi which is at the start of the park.

hiking
1 day ago

this Trail is listed as hard but I imagine it's because there's a gradual incline most of the hike. Periodically there are sharper climbs with quicker elevation and some Slippery Rock When Wet. this hike is it should be listed as heavy moderate. when you do reach the summit and you step out onto the looking rock it'll make every one of your steps worthwhile. The view is absolutely Majestic.

2 days ago

Gorgeous views from the top! Worth the climb.

8 days ago

Tough but manageable 3-mile upward climb with an awesome view at the top. We are 51 and 62 in average shape and had no difficulty, but it did wear us out! It took about two hours to get to the top, where we stayed about 30 minutes, then another 90 minutes or so to get back down. Take lots of water. Don’t wear sandals as there are lots of tree roots and rocks to trip over. Hiking poles were useful.

hiking
9 days ago

Amazing!!! One of the best trails we done!

hiking
9 days ago

No one is kidding about the view, it's absolutely breath-taking. My fiancee and I chose this hike after seeing it across the valley from Black Balsam Knob. The hike itself starts out slow and gradually gets more difficult, after the gradual switchbacks it starts getting really rocky and the path becomes a tangle of roots, it's gets maybe a little more than a 30° incline at this point but right before you hit the top it suddenly has a downward slope. We went on a Saturday and it was pretty busy, there were lots of dogs including ours and dogs of various sizes. There were people of every age on the trail, it's not too difficult but can be a little hard on the knees. Watch out for the tree roots, they tripped me on the way down. Bring lots of water!

hiking
9 days ago

Just a heads up, someone had a Lost Dog notice posted on October 6, 2018. A Brittany Spaniel went missing, by the name of Jake. The number to call if you see him is 303.717.0291.

Just wanted to pass this on!

hiking
9 days ago

This was a great hike. Moderate to Hard as it says. It took us about 2 hours to get to the top, with a few stops to drink water and let our 7 yr dog have a break. It was about an hour and half back down. The hike up doesn’t have any views (maybe later in Fall or Winter), but the view at the top is spectacular. Would be an excellent place to bring some food for a picnic.

My only warning would be to watch what time you start this hike. The first time I did it, we started to late, and ended up hiking in pitch darkness. Watching people start the hike at 4pm in Autumn, made me think they would end up hiking in the dark as well. If you start late, just make sure to bring a flashlight or two.

hiking
14 days ago

It’s a tough climb.

hiking
18 days ago

The walk up primarily is a set of switchbacks that gradually rise across the face of the same forested slope: pretty and green, but the view doesn’t change for quite a while. When the view does change, though, it is simply breathtaking. I sat on a rock just on the outside of the main exit from the forest to have lunch and to hear people’s reactions as they emerged. Just as I had done, even having read the reviews, truly 100% vocalized some instant, quiet, and genuine, nearly spiritual, version of, “Oh, wow .”

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike. Gradual incline due to multitude of switchbacks. Moderately strenuous for a weekend hiker. Incredible panoramic view. Make sure to pack a lunch and plan to stay a while to enjoy the view.

1 month ago

Nice climb. My first goal-oriented hike. Consistent elevation rise.

hiking
1 month ago

As other reviewers have mentioned, the main highlight is reaching the top and getting the spectacular view of the mountains! I found it to be worth it for a day hike. There are tons of switchbacks but nothing too difficult. The trail was nice and well-maintained. Lots of shade as you are in tree cover 99% of the hike. Even though I did see what looked like a few places to camp not far from the top, I am not sure I would want to overnight camp there. Only saw a handful of people either way. Its a hike worth doing to see it for yourself!

1 month ago

Very clean trail, I love the hike going up. The summit is one of the the best I have seen.

hiking
1 month ago

This is a steep climb to a nice view of the southern Smokies! Did it Labor Day weekend when trees were green, but I bet the view is even better in the fall. I also bet it's an easier climb in the cooler weather. Could be worth packing a lunch to eat at the top!

hiking
1 month ago

The trail is definitely on the moderate to hard end of the spectrum. There were people of all ages on the trail. My husband and I are in our late 20s but I saw children, as well as elderly making the trek to the top. The steady incline gets your heart pumping and sweat dripping but the view at the top is well worth it! I can’t wait to go back in the fall. I didn’t see anyone in the reviews comment on this, but don’t miss the little crystal pebbles/stones along the trail! I didn’t catch them until our way back down.

hiking
1 month ago

Absolutely wonderful. This trail will challenge your muscle endurance because it is quite steep. The view at the top was worth it.

backpacking
1 month ago

It’s a tough one but has my favorite secret camp spot! I’ve done it twice and was able to camp there both times and only saw one little group of day hikers over there. Aside from that, the end of the trail is awesome but sketchy- no rails between you and the steep edge of the rock! Don’t set your water bottle down! It can get crowded though, because there’s not much room on the edge.

hiking
1 month ago

This hike isn’t too difficult and the view at the top is 100% worth it. Switchbacks I considered to be slightly gradual. Did see a good sized snake on the trail on the way back. Well maintained trails though- went early in the morning and it started to get pretty busy on our way down.

hiking
1 month ago

Fantastic views! Went after a few days of rain and parts of the trail were completely underwater. But this made it an adventure! The trail is very well maintained and the switchbacks are super moderate and covered in rhododendron, making for a shady beautiful hike.

hiking
1 month ago

There is a white house cat at the top of this trail. I don't know how it got up 1700 feet but I was sitting at the top snacking and it just appeared. If you made the wonderful decision to take your cat hiking and lost it then now you know where it is.

camping
1 month ago

Pretty tough and challenging hike with a camping pack but the views are AMAZING. There's a great spot at the very top perfect for a couple small tents or a few hammocks. Water is scarce once you get about halfway up. The first half has some serious switchbacks and the second half is greatly inclined with lots of rocks and roots to navigate.

hiking
1 month ago

Very scenic and had many switchbacks which made it less difficult. Parts of the trail, especially the last mile or so toward the top was rocky and many roots. Trail was well defined and the view at the rock was fantastic. I’d rate as moderate with a few parts as slightly difficult..

hiking
1 month ago

Excellent hike. Challenging, The poles helped a lot, don’t leave them behind. Plenty of incline, switchbacks, roots and rocks. Highly recommend it.

1 month ago

Great hike! Killer switchbacks but so worth it with views at top.

hiking
1 month ago

Great workout, lots of fun places to explore on this rock. Lots of traffic but get there early. Found my own personal lookout spot and even a cave

1 month ago

Love love loved it! Last hike we did before we leave for home. Glad we waited to do it last. Was not difficult at all.

hiking
2 months ago

Awesome trail, little traffic and awesome views at the top.

hiking
2 months ago

I did this hike today and it was very nice. The view is so beautiful at the end! The hike isn’t too strenuous and I would rate it moderate to hard at the very end. Be careful with yellow jackets (there was a nest), I got stung and ended up with a severe allergic reaction and a rescue team had to come get me. So if you’re allergic, take your pen/meds with you!

hiking
2 months ago

First thing to note is that this is a different trail than looking glass falls which several people seemed confused about. The only water fall is a very small one near the start. The trail is not steep but the 3 miles out is entirely uphill. The view at the top is definitely worth it though!

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