Rainbow Falls Trail

MODERATE 413 reviews
#1 of 5 trails in

Rainbow Falls Trail is a 4.3 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Cleveland, South Carolina that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from September until May. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
4.3 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1,207 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

nature trips

walking

forest

views

waterfall

wild flowers

bugs

rocky

scramble

Parking is limited and is known to be full sometimes during weekends

6 days ago

Great hike, not too tough, well marked. Great waterfall

19 days ago

Well worth the incline!!! Easy but rocky at bottom on blue trail then red trail climbs at times pretty steep w some stairs.

hiking
19 days ago

You’ll definitely get your heart rate up on this one! Beautiful falls are worth the effort!! Jones Gap State Park can sometimes be hard to get into as there is limited parking. Be sure to go early if there’s beautiful weather!

25 days ago

Great hike!

1 month ago

Very nice trail, fairly easy climb. Not to much traffic when we went and trail is well maintained.

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike with awesome payoff at the end. My one quibble is the difficulty rating for the hike. This is definitely not a "moderate" hike though a physically fit person shouldn't have too much trouble completing it.

hiking
1 month ago

Great Hike! A bit tough, but well worth it!

1 month ago

Great trail - really well marked and maintained. The views were absolutely beautiful and I loved hiking with the sound of the creek and waterfalls nearly the whole way up. I had to wait about an hour to get into the park, but it was well worth it. If you're going on the weekend, I would advise getting there before 9.

hiking
2 months ago

Exhausting, but so worth the hike! strenuous, flat, rocky, waterfalls and mist

hiking
2 months ago

Hard to believe every new trail seems even more beautiful than the last one. Trail was easy to follow (even I couldn’t get lost). Runs along the stream most of the way. Crosses under a sheer rock cliff and takes you to the base of the falls. Great today and would be great once the leaves are off in order to get a whole different perspective. Only about six others on the trail. Had the falls to myself.

hiking
2 months ago

Great hike with awesome falls at the end. As stated in other reviews, easy 0.6 mi beginning then 1.6 mi climb to the falls but well worth it. Took our dog and we had no difficulties. Went on a weekday afternoon and found ourselves alone at the falls.

hiking
2 months ago

Loved this trail! Lots of rocks and roots on the path, so you have to watch your footing, but overall it was a great hike to some awesome falls.

hiking
2 months ago

An easy hike the first hour from Main Entrance of Park, on Jones Gap Trail then a strenuous hike thereafter. Beautiful views of the river along the way, and many mini waterfalls along the way. Wide trails and some narrow paths along rocks, rock jumping too, so much variety and so worth the trek. A nice park with $5 per person fee. Plenty of parking and clean bathrooms. From parking area to Jones Gap Trail to Rainbow Falls Trail and back is about 5.1 miles.

hiking
3 months ago

This trail was very fun to hike. A lot of great views.

hiking
3 months ago

This trail is amazing! Very beautiful and a great view of the falls at the top!

hiking
3 months ago

One of my favorite and most rewarding hikes. A decent distance and moderate trails leading up to an amazing waterfall. Absolutely hiking here again!!

hiking
3 months ago

Gorgeous hike with a great pay off! Most of the trail has water alongside, which makes for beautiful views and cooler temperatures. My hiking buddy and I are both out of shape, novice hikers but we could do it! Took us 2 hours to the top and two hours down with plenty of breaks. Watch your footing as most of the smaller rocks are ankle turners!

hiking
3 months ago

I would recommend this trail to anyone. At the end of the hike there was a rewarding view. On the way up is steep and can be challenging but on the way down was the easy part. Overall this trail was amazing.

3 months ago

It’s worth the effort because the falls are AMAZING! This trail is rated “easy” but it definitely should be rated moderate to hard. Wear hiking boots as this is not for running shoes. The terrain is very rocky and unstable. We do a lot of Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina hiking. This is one of our favorites. You will not be disappointed with the falls.

3 months ago

1) Arrive early - limited parking at Trailhead.
2) First 1/3 of trail parallels river & riverbed, only a slight elevation gain, with many good photo ops w/rolling water & large boulders.
3) Once you cross over the river (on bridge) the next 2/3's of trail has a very appreciable elevation gain providing a good physical workout
4) BUT, the Rainbow Fall at the top of trail makes all efforts VERY much worth it - aprx a 160 ft free-fall water fall to which you can hike to within feet of the Fall's base.
5) GREAT Trail in all four seasons (had the opportunity to hike last winter with snow on the ground - it creates a whole different ambiance & atmosphere!). GO FOR IT, you'll be well rewarded.

hiking
3 months ago

It was super hot and humid yesterday when I hiked it which made the trail way harder. It’s not an easy trail, definitely a moderate as the second mile is most of your elevation gain. Very rocky terrain on the trail. The end is completely worth the trek. Amazing waterfall at the end. I’m used to hiking out west and this was similar to those trails. Who knew this kind of thing existed in SC!? Do this hike for sure, just don’t do it in the middle of a 90 degree day!

hiking
3 months ago

Amazing waterfall!! Harder than I expected, I broke a pretty good sweat getting up there. Totally worth it.

hiking
3 months ago

Would rate this as moderate as opposed to easy. Well marked trail, but long uphill at times. Great waterfall

hiking
3 months ago

Great workout. Definitely broke a good sweat on the way up. Beautiful towering waterfall. Get there early because parking is limited.

hiking
3 months ago

Awesome! Very good workout. Had to stop a few times to take a breather!

hiking
3 months ago

Fairly easy trail. Would be difficult to get lost.
Beautiful views all around. Enjoy the climb

3 months ago

Great workout and beautiful views! Highly recommended!!

3 months ago

This trail is steep, but very well maintained and Rainbow Falls was a great reward for my 11, 10, and 8 year old hiking companions.

hiking
3 months ago

Good hike to beautiful views of the falls and mountains. Well worth the time.

hiking
3 months ago

Great hike and decent workout. The only bad thing i would say is that parking at Jones Gap sucks. Make sure you get there early or you will be waiting a long time for a parking spot.

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