The crowds are not. If you are ever near this trail, I absolutely reccomend it!! For the adventurous, an unofficial trail leads up alongside the cascade to another, more secluded waterfall. Kids (9, 7, 5, 4) all able to hike entire way with no problem. Restrooms are available at the head. Here are the maps covering the Catawba Falls area of the Pisgah National Forest's Grandfather Ranger District. The only access points to the falls were a trail that went through private property, and an access point off of … Old Mitchell Trail & Mount Mitchell High Loop, Mount Mitchell Summit & Balsam Nature Trail, Best fall foliage hikes near Asheville and in the NC mountains, Linville Gorge hiking, camping & adventure guide, Blue Ridge Parkway hikes: our favorite summit views, Roan Mountain & the Roan Highlands on the Appalachian Trail, 2019 Fall color forecast for Asheville, NC, Mount Mitchell Summit and Balsam Nature Trail, Deep Gap Trail from Mount Mitchell to Mount Craig and Big Tom Mountain. The trail curved north toward the Catawba Gap. Catawba Falls Trail is a 2.1 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Old Fort, North Carolina that features a waterfall and is good for all skill levels. This waterfall hike, located in the Pisgah National Forest just east of Asheville, follows the cascading Catawba River along a mossy trail laden with hues of red, yellow and orange. Easy, short hike. Call (828) 668-4831 for more information. On this visit the Falls were not as dramatic due to less water but still scenic. The 100-ft. tall Catawba Falls is located near Old Fort (26 miles east of Asheville, just three miles off I-40). Get all the news you need in your inbox each morning. Before, this trail was difficult to follow and included three creek crossings, including one fairly deep one through the actual Catawba River. There is one tricky stream crossing (0.9 mi) on stepping stones which can be more difficult have heavy rains. Please support them by making a donation or joining a volunteer day. A steep side trail descends to the river’s banks at .9 mile, catching views of a tumbling waterfall on the river beside a small cave. Citizen-Times article. Until recently, around 2010, Congress was petitioned to acquire the land and extend the borders of Pisgah National Forest to include this incredible landmark. This map shows our approximate route while exploring this trail, but does not replace an official trail map. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, nature trips, and bird watching and is accessible year-round. The trail officially ends at the falls. Catawba Falls Events can be the backdrop for any type of company outing. The trail to the 100'+ Catawba Falls is 1.2 miles and is fairly easy for most, moderate for others. The trail ends at the base of Catawba Falls, a tall, multi-drop waterfall plunging more than 150 feet. Thanks to a man who frequents visiting the falls, he showed us a Copperhead behind a rock and the pen found two other Copperheads to show our grandchildren. The trail is an easy forest walk along the headwaters of the Catawba River to a … So very glad that I decided to do this trail before coming home. It is possible to continue steeply upstream to Upper Catawba Falls, but the Forest Service discourages this practice due tof environmental impact and because several fatalities that have occurred. Let's work together to keep these fantastic trails maintained and open for use! The trail begins at the kiosk and follows the left side of the river up to the new foot bridge. You'll hear the river picking up steam as you climb. Maybe it's better M-Th than when I went on a Friday? And it was fall so the water was cold but the waterfall was great. The trail to the falls was originally a pathway used by the Cherokee. Final few hundred feet at the Falls themselves is difficult but didn't hamper most hikers. Follow this trail along the scenic headwaters of the Catawba River for a 4 mile round trip hike to the beautiful 100ft cascading waterfall. This fantastic day hike explores waterfall after waterfall in a sun-dappled valley, hiking just over two miles through a shady forest to the seeping wall of vibrant green moss and tendrils of water known as Catawba Falls. All rights reserved. The hike time is roughly half hour each way with another half hour to enjoy the waterfall. The latest was February 2018. If you’re hiking with someone, stay together so that no one goes off on their own and gets lost. Hello everyone, I visited Catawba Falls on 25th, October. Great hike, beautiful falls. There are some trails off the main path to the water. Search. Note that the trail to upper Catawba Falls, as of this recording in early 2016, is unsafe and closed while the forest service reroutes the trail beyond Catawba Falls. Shortly up the trail, you'll see two rope assists to help you on your way. Still, plan to arrive early in the morning during the height of the tourist season to assure you get a parking spot. We had the trail to ourselves this morning which allowed the dogs to run off leash. Beautiful waterfall easy trail great day pretty streams. Parking is generous (and needs to be). However, if one stays on the main trail, they would miss many wonders. Catawba Falls, one of Western North Carolina’s exceptional Blue Ridge waterfalls over 100 ft high, is now fully accessible to the public and a highly recommended destination. Trail Type: Gravel and dirt Hike Distance: 2 miles round trip Difficulty: 6 Beauty: 9. A quick walkthrough of points of interest along this beautiful hike to the falls. Improving McDowell County access to trails and more. Beautiful falls at end of hike and quick trip back. 8-8-20 - updated the Long Branch Falls page. This wonderful trail has multiple bridges and a stream crossing that ends at a beautiful waterfall with water for both you and your dog to play in. By the 1800s, it was used as a stagecoach route to Asheville. Free parking is available at the trailhead. The trail curved north toward the Catawba Gap. Our photos do not truly capture it. This waterfall hike, located in the Pisgah National Forest just east of Asheville, follows the cascading Catawba River along a mossy trail laden with hues of red, yellow and orange. The majority of the Catawba Falls hike is a steady uphill and elevation will increase 465 feet from beginning to end. The trail meanders through a shady forest, fording several usually-shallow crossings to visit several small waterfalls as well as the tall cascades of Catawba Falls as it tumbles down a multi-tiered, moss-covered cliff. 7-31-20 - Apparently there's a new trail to Hooker Falls. Come enjoy a break from your typical work environment on our generously spaced grounds, to connect with your fellow colleagues while allowing yourself to disconnect from the distractions of daily life. In 2012, the U.S. Forest Service opened a parking lot and restrooms for the waterfall hiking trail in Pisgah National Forest. It follows an old road past a former power plant and dam to a spectacular cascade. Catawba Falls has long been known as one of the finest cascades in North Carolina. 2. The hike returns to the main trail, crossing the stream, Clover Patch Branch, and resuming the climb. So beware of where you step off the path. Even on its busiest day, the hike feels private, almost like walking through a primeval forest. Citizen-Times article. Passing one mile, the trail becomes rocky, scrambling over boulders and crossing Chestnut Branch, as the sound of rushing water grows louder. I can’t wait to come back in the summer...looked like there was various swimming areas to enjoy! Easy, short hike to pretty waterfalls. The hike continues climbing, reaching the concrete ruins of a dam, now covered in moss and lichen. The 100-foot-tall Catawba Falls, which is actually the lower of two falls in the 88 acres obtained by the Forest Service in 2010, may be the state’s prettiest waterfall. There are several points of interest: the historic remains of an old home, two bridges, and then the falls themselves. ALL PHOTOS ARE COPYRIGHT ERIC CHAMPLIN OR SUMMIT19 STUDIO LLC. Popular areas that are being reopened include Catawba Falls and the Art Loeb Trail. 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