Explore the most popular walking trails in North Carolina with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

15 hours ago

Wonderful little hike on a paved trail around a small pond and park area. Recommended for all levels.

hiking
22 hours ago

Such incredible views! Absolutely worth climbing the altitude. It’s pretty quick for a fit hiker but gosh you can spend the entire day at each overlook you pass. Loved it.

Not super hard, but if you are 50 like me you need to be in shape. I did it without issue. I have seen many average cars on the road in and they don’t have issues with it, but if you only have 3 or 4 inches of clearance don’t try the drive in.

hiking
23 hours ago

A very easy trail with wonderful views

hiking
1 day ago

What an incredible waterfall and a bit unexpected as you reach the bridge and witness this incredible natural beauty. This rainy year has made these waterfalls especially beautiful. An easy hike but about 160 stairs to climb. So worth the stair climbing.

hiking
1 day ago

Beautiful waterfall but a bit difficult to find after the hike through the logging road. The logging road was nice and easy, wide enough and an easy walk for about 1 mike in and 1 mike out. The trail around the waterfall was a bit cleared but still a challenge to see at times, especially as you tried to approach and see the waterfall. The trail was semi cleared, lots of debris, less traveled so lots of poison ivy along the way to watch out for. If you have allergies to poison ivy, wear long pants to avoid contact.

This is a super easy trail, relatively flat and not too rooty, but still quite nice. it is rare to come across many people in the leg past the bridge. You are also along the banks of Lake Brandt almost the entire time so you have a nice cool breeze in sumer. Plenty of wildlife, herons and gulls in the lake, an occasional snake, and deer tend to hang out in the area a lot as well.

Second on in and out and back to Big Butt Mountain. Little Butt has a heck of a climb from the gap below Point Misery. Thanks to the High Country Conservation group for installing stairs and maintaining this very narrow trail. On the back side are some great views east and west towards the rest of the Black Mountains and the Craggy Mountains. Unfortunately, the clouds closed in soon and I hiked in the rain from thereafter.

hiking
1 day ago

Difficult trail to navigate, but following the directions given earlier was able to find a path to the water fall. A pleasant adventure and a beautiful waterfall worth the trek.

Don't go on a rainy day. very muddy and you will get your feet/shoes wet. fall would be better. not very scenic.

A tough but enjoyable trail. A lot of steep steps. Trail is well maintained.

Great hike, some obstacles but well worth the small hike to the falls.

Great trail, look forward to doing it again.

Plenty of interesting things to look at. Enjoyed the Hebron rock community and the many creek crossings. Would def recommend

Super spidery, poorly marked, heinous hills with little to no reward. Waterfall was meh and no view to speak of. Also, park ranger was hateful. Would not recommend.

hiking
1 day ago

I live up here and this is my favorite hike to take especially when fall hits.

Park at the primitive lot off Roseborough Road and make sure you begin your ascent on the NW side of the spur creek (I started on the SE and ended up having to backtrack). The climb up Bee Mountain was alternately pleasant and grueling as slight ascents were followed by muddy 25-30% scrambles. Once at the top, I opted for the Timber Hollow Ridge Trail and was glad I did! The trail slowly descends to the MST near the confluence of Lost Cove Creek and Gragg Prong and has a beautiful view of Grandfather Mountain about halfway down. From here I hiked upstream on the MST past 5 medium to major waterfalls and sliding rocks, ultimately back to my car. Couple of bits of advice: be ready for muddy and rocky scrambling, lost of blowdown and 3-4 not unpleasant water crossings. Upper Gragg Prong Falls has a magnificent 8 foot deep pool just below a 10 foot waterfall. Perfect for swimming!

hiking
1 day ago

There are two ways to get to Big Butt: a stiff steep hike from NC 197 at Cane Gap or a longer ridge and multi peak climb from the Walker Knob Overlook on the BRP about 5 miles south of the Mount Mitchell State park entrance (NC 128). I took the latter route which longer, but ultimately more rewarding as you climb Brush Fence Ridge, and up and over Point Misery and Little Butt before arriving at the side trail to the summit of Big Butt.

These peaks form the western rim of the Black Mountain and lie thousands of feet above the Cane River Gorge that can be head roaring below when you get to Little Butt. The forest resembles the Mount Mitchell Trail flora and fauna, event though the elevations do not exceed 6000 feet. The trail is well maintained by the the NC High Peaks Trail Association and included hundreds of wooden step that make the climbs much easier to maneuver. The best views lie on the ridge between Little Butt and Big Butt. Unfortunately clouds rolled in when I hiked this track and so was only able to catch short glimpses of the valley to the east (and not the Black Mountain Crest). Hiking this route in early spring or late fall should give you a better chance of good weather and less foliage blocking vistas.

From the Walker Knob Overlook, take the trailhead to the SOUTH. **Be careful here as an old forest road and the Mountains to Sea also converge in the field behind the overlook parking lot. You will descend over a hundred feet before gently ascending to the top of Brush Fence Ridge and finally to the summit of Point Misery (the name was not indicative of this side of the mountain - the return trip up the backside will give you an appreciation of why it is appropriately named). The HP is just off the trail and there is a Geodetic Marker as well as several marked bearing trees nearby.

From there, descend steeply over 300 feet to a grassy gap and then ascend up a series of stairs around giant rocks to the inauspicious peak of Little Butt Mountain. The trail continues a very narrow ridge reminiscent of the Amphibuolite Mountains. Look for rock outcrops to the right and left of the trail for some tremendous views of the Black Mountains (east) and the Craggy Mountains (west).

Continue along the ridge ascending gently to a well marked side trail to the left that will take you via an interesting semi-open trail to the summit of Big Butt. No ascertainable views here, but I accidentally surprised a nide of about 30 pheasants. The tremendous fluttering and so much wing flapping and feathers flying gave a feeling of both being on the the set of THE BIRDS and of marveling at the sight of these beautiful creatures. Then the rain started. It continued off and on on the hike back and was so intense at times that I felt more like this was the Amazon rain forest, not western NC. And yet, once I got wet, it was pleasant. Only real obstacle was the relentless climb back up to Point Misery.

Of course once I got back to the car, the rain stopped and the sun came out! For completists, cross the road and hike to the crest of Walker Knob on the M-to-S trail (see separate entry for more detail on this peak and others described above).

I disagree with a few of the comments here. This hike is very easy, but enjoyable if you want to get a quick workout in while visiting Hot Springs. It took me about an hour to complete with my dog. The only challenge with this hike is the unmarked trails. The part of Lover’s Leap on the AT is clearly marked with white blazes, but the rest of the trail is not marked. Bring a map and a compass and you’ll be fine.

Viewed the lower falls and then hiked to the upper falls. The trail to upper was pretty muddy but not at all un-passable. We hiked back to the parking lot by going on the graveyard fields trail to add some variety. Lower falls were very crowded but the hike to upper falls had more solitude and when we arrived at the upper falls we were the only ones there.

hiking
1 day ago

This was a great trail with lots of shade. There were a few nice spots where the view of the lake was awesome. The kudzu at the end of the trail was a nice surprise. The trail is pretty flat, but the woods are pretty. We also got to see a mama deer and her fawn.

I moved from Fayetteville 10 years ago and pleasantly surprised when I visited this year at the improvements, beautiful welcome/learning center. I took my niece and had an incredible time! We went off the path, which allowed me to see parts I had not previously explored. I cannot wait for my next trip! This is family and pet friendly, lots of shade.

Not a fan. This trail is not well maintained, which increases its difficulty. It’s also worth noting that this is not a destination trail to the falls, but rather some falls located along 24 miles of total trail.

We took kids ages 7 and 3. Okay for the seven year old, not for the 3. I’ll pass on doing this one again.

on Lake Lomond

1 day ago

Paved trail great for all levels. Good way to walk off dinner.

1 day ago

Great paved trail for a little stroll.

hiking
1 day ago

This is definitely a busy place, but there's a reason. It is worth it big time. Make sure to hike to the bottom to swim!

A most favorite place to be. Walk, run, sit, paint, sketch, photograph, walk the dog.

I thought this was the best trail in the area. Went early on a weekday and there were no other hikers on the trail though there were MANY on Panthertown Valley trail on the way back

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