Stone Mountain Loop Trail

MODERATE 467 reviews
#1 of 17 trails in

Stone Mountain Loop Trail is a 4.5 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Roaring Gap, North Carolina that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. 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.

Distance: 4.5 miles Elevation Gain: 938 feet Route Type: Loop

dogs on leash

hiking

nature trips

walking

bird watching

running

forest

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

blowdown

Hike around the granite dome at Stone Mountain State Park south of the Blue Ridge Parkway. A granite bulge forms the centerpiece of Stone Mountain State Park. Stone Mountain Loop takes you to the top of the bulge, past a scenic waterfall and through the restored homestead of a family that lived in the shadow of Stone Mountain for four generations. The park also provides an excellent side trip for travelers along the nearby Blue Ridge Parkway. Two trailheads at Stone Mountain State Park lead to the loop. While the Lower Trailhead in the park's northeast corner gets you to the base of the mountain more quickly, the far better hiking route is from the Upper Trailhead on the west side of the park. From there, you hike a short spur to reach the loop trail, hang a left, walk down past Stone Mountain Falls and then continue till the massive wall of granite starts to fill the background behind the thinning tree.. Slack-jawed wonder is a perfectly natural response to seeing Stone Mountain for the first time. Once you get your wits about you again, you can explore the Hutchinson family's homestead, occupied for a century from 1855 to 1955. Then it's a steep slog to the summit - a vast, sloping field of granite striped black by one rainstorm after another. Finally, it's all downhill to get back where you came from.

hiking
rocky
snow
washed out
7 days ago

We started out at the Upper lot and turned left to seethe waterfall first. Since the trail log said 900 foot elevation gain, we weren't to worried when we hit the stairs at the waterfall. We lost the trail slightly at the homestead but found it quickly enough. It started snowing and we weren't expecting the stairs going up the mountain. They are extra difficult in the wet. Not moderate. We will try again in the Spring or Summer.

hiking
13 days ago

Great trail. Took two kids (9 and 6) on this and it was just about the 6-year-old’s endurance limit (though maybe if it were summer hiking season they’d be better conditioned). We started to the right, in order to get the elevation gain out of the way. But that meant ending with climbing the stairs by the waterfall, which very nearly did the little ones in. (My knees were also not fans of going down the stairs on the side of the mountain itself. Should’ve gone up the stairs and down the switchbacks.) Might be the best views in NC (other than Chimney Rock), especially in winter with the leaves off the trees so there was more visibility. Kids loved scrambling around on the rocks at the top and walking across the stream along the way back. Trail is easy and in great condition (only a few missing stairs). Will definitely do again.

hiking
13 days ago

Awesome trail. Definitely want to start at. Upper loop. You’ll start off with a waterfall, have several side trails you can explore along the way, and you’ll eventually end up in a clearing with an old family farm homestead. From there you’ll start your glute activating ascent to the top of the big stone mountain. Be ready! This portion is steep and windy! But once you’re at the stop the view is great and you’ll have plenty of room to stretch out in the sun to relax. Luckily the descent from this portion does have some switchbacks but isn’t too bad. Recommend for a good day hike as there’s lots to stop and explore along the way. Our 2 dogs loved it

hiking
28 days ago

Great hike! Booty burn is real!

1 month ago

We took our 6 & 7 yr old and they were able to complete it with no problems. We started at the Upper Trailhead Parking Lot which takes you to the falls much sooner. However, whichever trailhead you choose to begin at (Upper or Lower), you will encounter many, many stairs. Great trail and well marked!

Diverse routes and very well maintained. Dog friendly!

1 month ago

Great hike with so many different aspects - stairs, waterfall, homestead, beautiful views of the rock below that you hike on top of, lots of birds, pathways of roots, smooth rock, and dirt/rocks. You should definitely do the loop! We saw lots of dogs. I took my 3 kids ages 7-11 who did great. We took about 2.5 hours and started at the upper parking lot and went left to begin the loop.

hiking
1 month ago

Nice hike. First time out with our new dog. He did awesome!

Beautiful Hike with Spectacular Views. Feels like what being on the moon might be like (if the moon had trees - LOL). Nice sections through the woods and also along the stone sections. Didn't realize there are steps either direction you go. We went counter-clockwise and felt that was best for us. The steps this direction are going down and they are manmade into the terrain (ie. uneven heights and spacing). This left the staircase (ie. consistently spaced stairs) toward the end when you are more apt to be getting tired.

hiking
2 months ago

Very enjoyable. Good for a day outing for whole family . Start from the entrance side and go up the mountain a bit easier going and around to the waterfall. 200 foot climb up from falls all stairs. Great views

Great hiking!!!

2 months ago

Great hike but NOT FOR A BEGINNER. The Wolf Rock trail is a good one for a beginner!

hiking
over grown
3 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

A great hike for beginners! I enjoy taking the students in my "hiking club" here because it offers a nice balance of views, forests, waterfalls, history, and, of course, exercise. :) It's definitely a local favorite.

hiking
3 months ago

Loved this trail. Diverse scenery and landscapes - from waterfalls to fields with historic cabins and stone overlooks. Highly recommend for dogs - plenty of spots for them to get their paws wet

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful, well marked trail with a large waterfall and great views in multiple spots! We also loved exploring the historic house and farm on the trail.

hiking
3 months ago

Great trail. Well marked. Took is about 3hrs. 61yoa. Will visit the park again.

hiking
4 months ago

Loved this trail. Definitely doing it again. Absolutely Gorgeous! Only part that kicked my butt in the end was the never ending steps coming up from the waterfall. But it was completely worth it!

hiking
4 months ago

Relatively easy trail for hiking. Can be busy on weekends. Spent an hour + just hanging out on the rock. Its awesome.

hiking
4 months ago

Easy to follow and well trafficked. There are a lot of things to see along the way, including a homestead. Beautiful falls and well maintained trail. I do recommend hiking boots and hiking sticks.

hiking
4 months ago

Hard! But worth it! I would love to go back during the week and see if it’s not so crowded. There were a lot of people there!

hiking
4 months ago

Trail is well marked ....traveled fairly heavy..lots of dogs and children excellent views and plenty of water at the lower end of the trail... beginning of the trail is easy to moderate but does get a little dicey on the upper all in all a good hike

hiking
4 months ago

Well-maintained trail, great views and facilities at both ends of the loop. Lots of stairs and climbing, not for those who are unprepared for a rigorous workout. If you’re hiking with kids, I’d recommend starting at upper parking area and heading right on the loop to get to the summit and then coming back the same way.

hiking
4 months ago

Great hiking trail. Great views, good variation in trail surface, good number of people on the trail but not overcrowded. You can find a number of places on the trail where all you hear are the birds and the breeze.

hiking
rocky
4 months ago

This trail is DEFINITELY STRENUOUS in stretches - specifically between the lower trailhead and summit (rapid elevation gain, steps, some cables), and again between the upper trailhead connector and the Stone Mountain falls (over 300 wooden stairs directly up the falls). It’s a gorgeous hike, but don’t plan on the loop if you’re not fit or have plenty of time for breaks. We stopped for lunch and snacks multiple times, loved the views and found the trail busy but wide and shaded for the most part. It was a great 1/2 day hike-and the homestead we tacked on at the end was pretty. Two dogs with us did well and had a ball! We slept well as did they after this one :)

hiking
4 months ago

Should be labeled "Hard" just because of the amount of steps. Didn't realize it was a loop trail so we went down the steps to see the waterfall from the bottom and then climbed back up the steps. Thought I was gonna die!!! Didn't think the waterfall was worth it.

hiking
5 months ago

Easy 2 hour hike with enough exercise and beautiful views for anyone who hikes. Well marked, maintained and shaded. Around 5 miles all said and done. Definitely recommend starting at upper trail parking lot and going clockwise.

hiking
5 months ago

This trail was a great workout but my two children were able to hike it with us!! The summit offers amazing views!

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