Sunset Rock Trail is a 1.4 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Highlands, North Carolina that features beautiful wild flowers and is good for all skill levels. 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.

Length1.4 miElevation gain236 ftRoute typeOut & back
Dogs on leashkid friendlyHikingMountain bikingWalkingBird watchingRunningForestViewsWildflowersWildlife
Description
Waypoints (0)
Contact

Driving up to Ravnel Park is not recommended unless you have four wheel drive.

Highlands-Cashiers Land Trust 828-526-1111 www.hicashlt.org

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (163)
Photos (118)
Recordings (109)
Completed (422)
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SaraSam Dawson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 27, 2021
HikingGreat!

Two rocks for viewing the one to the right overlooks downtown Highlands and you walk on large rocks at the top that are super easy and wide to walk on. The view is epic. To the left is a pretty view of the mountains. You do the trail and turn left and right at the top so literally do one walk across and then do the other. Fairly easy to park at the bottom close to the nature center and a mostly gravel driveway walk up. Overall quick and easy work it for the views at the top. Would definitely do again! Note: DO NOT DRIVE UP TO TRAIL UNLESS YOU HAVE 4x4 with a decently lifted but not to wide narrow suv

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Aaron Bridgman
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Hiking
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Martha Beam
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HikingGreat!

Great view. Fun trail so easy

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Jeb Barton
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WalkingIcy

We had heard alot about Sunset Rock but after doing Whiteside Mountain Trail earlier in the day, this one disappointed. It essentially feels like walking up a long driveway before it opens with views of the town. Good news is that it takes less than 30 minutes so not much time spent. And it is close to downtown so food and drink awaits !!

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Colleen Bourdeau
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 19, 2021
WalkingIcySnow

Wide, easy trail with a gradual incline. It had snowed the day we hiked it so it was a little icy and slippery. I suspect most of the time it is no problem. The views are amazing! We will be back!

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John Caccavaro
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJanuary 14, 2021
Hiking

find but unexciting walk up a gravel road but the views at both lookouts are 5 stars.

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Blake Rogers
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarDecember 26, 2020
Hiking

Beautiful little gravel road trail leading to a scenic overlook.

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Bridget Grimsley Friedman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarDecember 24, 2020
WalkingIcy

Trail was challenging because it was all uphill to the top. It was unclear if driving was permitted because a pedestrian only sign was moved to the side of the road. Cars were at the top when we got there, so apparently they were permitted, but several people walked from the parking lot at the bottom. Once at the top, the wind was whipping and it was chilly. The view was beautiful, but the rock itself was quite impressive. It looked like a natural granite stadium sloping down to more of the mountain below. The sunset was nice, too! The view overlooks the town of Highlands.

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Jordan Trost
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarDecember 18, 2020
Hiking

Short paved gravel path, there is an incline but I saw people driving up in 4WD cars also. lovely views at the top

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JAMES GRIMES
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 26, 2020
Hiking

Great!

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Kristin Zupancic
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 21, 2020
Hiking

Veryyyy easy gravel road and then you can go to the left for sunrise or the right for sunset. I personally thought the sunrise view was better, just not as big of a look out.

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David Neale
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarNovember 15, 2020
Hiking

It’s not as easy as they make out. It’s about a mile uphill the whole way to summit. You’re walking on a gravel road the whole time. Tons of people sitting watching sunset. Ppl had wine, beer and liquor. Don’t drive up unless you have four wheel or all wheel drive.

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Julie and Leonard Wood
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 5, 2020
Hiking

great hike! parked across from nature center and walked up. 8t forks at the top. to the left is sunrise rock and to the right is sunset rock.

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Tal Kelsey
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarOctober 24, 2020
Hiking

Tourist Attraction rather than a hike. Still beautiful. Great views of Downtown Highlands. Park at the Highlands Nature Center and walk up the gravel road. Sunrise Rock to the left, Sunset Rock to the right.

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Joel Minter
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Hiking

Confusing as to where the trail actually is. You can park at the bottom or drive almost the whole thing.

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Gregg Lunsford
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Hiking
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Michael Smith
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Hiking

Great for those who want an easy trail and want to enjoy the mountain views.

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JAMES GRIMES
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Hiking
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Carly Steele Johnson
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HikingGreat!Muddy

I’d say it’s more moderate than easy, but worth it to get to that beautiful view!

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Jim Knoer
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Hiking

Easy hike to a beautiful sunset view.

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Bev Hollis
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 16, 2020
Hiking

Easy up and down. Sunset rock has plenty of room to social distance. Highly recommend both and don’t miss Sunset Rock in the morning!

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J.T. Gaden
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 14, 2020
Hiking

Easy hike up, takes you on a small gravel road. Park at the nature center and follow the signs. Beautiful view for such a short hike! Good spot to bring a sack lunch and take in the scenery.

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Spencer X
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJune 25, 2020
Hiking

Pretty easy climb up a mostly gravel path to a nice overlook. Close to downtown Highlands. Overall, very low commitment. Likely much nicer during a clear sunset.

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Fred D**** 4
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJune 17, 2020
Hiking

If you follow the red line given on the app you will be facing East and Whiteside mountain. That’s the sunrise view. For the sunset side take the trail to the right once you reach the small upper parking area.

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Shani Dowell
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 27, 2020
Hiking

We had a fun time on this trail with our kids and dogs. It was a good way to start doing hikes in Highlands as it was an easier one with a great reward at the top with the awesome views and fun rock feature. It also helped that when we went it was pretty sparse.

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Tayler Lewis
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 11, 2020
Hiking

Park on the side of the road - I would not recommend driving this. When we went, there were washouts all along the road. The hike up the road really isn’t bad, it’s a decent little workout but nothing too crazy. It is a rock/gravel road so wear good shoes. When you get to the top, the view of Highlands is beautiful. We didn’t stay for sunset, but I wish we would have. If you plan on staying for sunset, make sure you bring a headlight or flashlight because the road is not lit.

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Julia Leach
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarOctober 27, 2019
HikingMuddy

A beautiful sunny day after heavy rain. The modest gradient trail up would have been a problem by car unless by 4x4. Autumn (fall) colours were spectacular. The trail was a bit muddy with shallow flooding at the top, but we had no problem walking along the edges and the view from the top was well worthwhile even without a sunset.

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Keri Keene Miller
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarOctober 24, 2019
Hiking

Great spot to see the sunset. Easy parking below and easy walk up.

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