Down some stairs to the lookout. This quarter mile stretch drops around 600 feet/mile and is super sick. Linville Falls Hike. Then you can walk down 40 or 50 wooden stairs with a handrail to another viewing platform with a better viewing angle of the entire falls. An in-and-out-hike from this location, due to the ruggedness of the terrain, is a difficult goal to achieve as a day trip. Turn left and continue 2.3 miles to the intersection with SR 130 (SC). No camping. Hours: Dawn until dusk, year-round. You see the entire waterfall from a distance. The orogeny of the steep slope is uncertain, but its effects are better understood. Rained off and on so it was a bit like hiking through the rainforest and a sauna at times. We all gathered in the Upper Whitewater Falls parking lot under clear blue, but cool skies. We did not go deeper into the canyon. It’s about more than standing on the mountain top. The rugged terrain around these two waterfalls remains wild and undeveloped. So if you want to visit both sections in one day, it’s very easy. March 28, 2015 from Whitewater Falls to Bad Creek. Maybe a slightly cleaner Garden of the Gods if you will. All rights reserved. The view of Sculpted Falls described here is known as the River Right Perch, because it is on the south side of the river - the right side looking downstream. The series falls is 800+ feet in total, but this hike only catches the upper 400 feet of the falls. Upper Whitewater Falls was definitely a waterfall that left a lasting impression on us. The hike catches its first views of Whitewater Falls at.25 mile, as the upper falls tumble in a series of wispy white cascades over a blocky, boulder-riddled cliff. Sculpted Falls is arguably the most scenic waterfall on the Upper Whitewater River, located in the middle of the Upper Whitewater Slot Canyon. First little bit is easy and then it gets at least moderate. Easy paved walkway to semi-tree obstructed view that’s still good and stairs to lower platform with view of entire falls. A post shared by Chad Chandler (@chad.chandler) on Jan 21, 2018 at 12:04pm PST We believe good things come from people spending time outside. We'll head west on the Foothills Trail and pass several incredible views of Lake Jocassee and beyond. Some technical sections with rocks and roots. Left to right: Upper Whitewater Falls on the NC side of the state border, Lower Whitewater Falls on the SC side of the state border. Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. GPS Coordinates to parking area: N 34.81473 W 083.30512 Definitely recommend if going up stairs is too much on your knees. You'll see a short wooden ladder that leads up a boulder next to the bridge, but if you go that way you'll have to step or jump across a gap between boulders to get to the bridge. Also, take a staircase down to a second overlook. Make another left and drive north on SR 130 (SC), which becomes SR 281 (NC) at the state line. Monte Bello Open Space Preserve, California. (If you are coming from Toxaway (easterly direction), start at US 64 and SR 281 and drive south 8.6 miles to the Whitewater Falls parking area. First time I’ve been to the river. Thus, while the trailhead for this hike is in South Carolina, Upper Whitewater Falls lies in North Carolina. Experienced hikers and rock climbers can continue on to a challenging hike to the stunning Upper Catawba Falls. It’s possible to bushwhack to the base of the falls by crossing the bridge and following the river upstream to the left. Very easy paved hike! (3 miles roundtrip, easy) This waterfall in the Pisgah National Forest is just three miles from I-40 in Old Fort. The trail now goes downhill, sometimes on dirt, sometimes on stones placed like steps, and in a couple places on wooden steps. More energetic hikers can continue down the half-mile spur trail that drops 600 feet in elevation to the Whitewater River and Foothills Trail. It was with it. The Whitewater River drops 700+ feet in about a half mile before it flows into Lake Jocassee. Would definitely do again. Refreshing swimming hole. Directions From … From the parking lot, there's a 1/2 mile smooth, paved, slightly uphill path/walkway to a viewpoint at the top of the falls. Upper Whitewater Falls Base Hike Route Map The approximate route of my hike to the base of Upper Whitewater Falls as depicted a la Google Earth... Foothills Trail Trailhead - Highway 281 The trailhead I'd be using on this hike is located just south of the Whitewater Falls Recreation Area access road. The Best Winter Adventures in North America. The trail was in great shape today. Steep hike. The walkway begins at a parking lot and is accessible to wheelchairs. The parking lot and falls overlook is managed by the Forest Service. Absolutely stunning views of the North Carolina South Carolina border in the gorges park, Easy gradual uphill walk to the overlook. The easiest overlook to reach is a quarter-mile from the parking lot along a paved path. Fee (honor system): $2 for vehicles with seven passengers or less. To experience these breathtaking falls up-close-and-personal, take the paved ¼ mile walkway to the upper overlook. Upper Whitewater Falls path is about a 1.6 mile partially paved trail to an overlook and is rated as easy. The Upper Whitewater Falls trailhead is located off of NC 281 right near the South Carolina border. It is managed by Forest Service. You will cross again over Whitewater River before making a steep ascent up to the junction with Upper Whitewater Falls Trail, around 6.3 miles in. Upper Whitewater Falls overlook can be accessed via a walkway/trail, rated as easy, and located at a different parking lot off of SR 281. Hike by the river to the lower falls, a 100-foot cascade. Other reviews say that, instead, you can follow the trail that goes to 281 to get back to the parking lot, but the images on GPS seemed to show that trail going out to the main road (281), not to the Whitewater Falls parking lot. Then leave the pavement to form a slightly longer loop along a short section of the 76 mile Foothills Trail. There is a pretty Because of the orientation and of the slope and jet stream’s forces, moisture-laden air from the plateau to the southwest is forced to condensate and rain when it is rises up the escarpment. drop on the Chattooga River with whitewater in action. Whitewater Falls is part of a series of six different falls on the Whitewater River along the North and South Carolina border that collectively fall over 800 feet. Good hike! Easy hike down to the valley floor where the river is and bridge to cross it. Then we will circle around Grassy Knob onto the Old Foothills Trail which will return us to SC Hwy 130/NC Hwy 281. There is net ascent of about 800 feet (200 m). A hike a bit south of here leads to the lower falls. Upper Whitewater Falls Take in the view of the Upper Whitewater Falls in the Nantahala National Forest in North Carolina. Stairs down to a great overlook. Stairs are steep and wet going down to the viewing platform but never felt unsafe. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. From there you can go back up the stairs, past the viewpoints, and back on the paved path to the parking lot. It is maintained by Duke Energy Co. North Carolina Div. Once you hit the stairs to the foothills trail though, it becomes an easy moderate. Annual pass available for $15; One-day or season permits are also valid at Whiteside Mountain and at Dry Falls. Really easy- has a small uphill road towards the first outlook and then a series of stairs down to the second. It’s actually only a 5 minute drive from the Bad Creek parking lot for the Lower Whitewater Falls hike. Nice spot to rest by a bridge. The other whitewater stretch is the breakdown of Upper Whitewater Falls. Upper Whitewater Falls (A8) to Sloan Bridge (A9) Bad Creek Access (A7) to Upper Whitewater Falls (A8) Canebrake (A6) to Bad Creek Access (A7) Laurel Fork Falls (A5) to Canebrake (A6) More Stats for Foothills Trail (Upper Whitewater Falls) hike trail. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure. North Carolina's Upper Whitewater Falls is a spectacular 411-foot cascade that rests near the border of South Carolina, dropping precipitously from the Blue Ridge Escarpment toward Jocassee Lake. Sign up to receive our weekly newsletter packed with the best adventure guides, travel ideas, news, and articles. The Nantahala National Forest is the largest National Forest in the state of North Carolina spanning over 830 square miles; almost the entire Western tip of the state. Very very beautiful and magnificent even from a distance. The hike to the falls starts in the corner of the lot next to the sign and while the scenery might not look too impressive at first, it quickly changes and becomes quite beautiful. After a short downhill section (.1 mile) you reach the Foothills Trail. The parking area for Upper Whitewater Falls is large and includes picnic tables and restrooms. The easiest overlook to reach is a quarter-mile from the parking lot along a paved path. It’s located in the Nantahala National Forest, about 60 miles from Asheville. Upper Whitewater Falls, near Cashiers, drops over 411 feet and is the highest falls east of the Rocky Mountains. We had a wintry start to this early spring hike. Some bushwacking required to reach a good view of the falls. Partially-paved trail to an overlook of the Falls then on to Whitewater River. Tallest: Upper Whitewater Falls. Foothills Trail (Upper Whitewater Falls) is a 6 mile blue singletrack trail located near Brevard North Carolina. It’s about protecting what sustains us. Tough with my toddler on my back and slippery leaves. Beautiful though. Outdoor Project may earn commission on products purchased through our links, which supports the work we do for our readers. Turn … Never get tired of the view. If you’re looking for a traditional hike this isn’t going to be for you, but if you’re looking for a short easy paved path to two observation points of a beautiful waterfall, this is exactly for you. We only hiked to the observation deck today. Follow along the Whitewater River, and after crossing the river the access trail will run into Foothills Trail. Get a little peace and quiet at the popular Upper Whitewater Falls with a short trip down the Foothills Trail on this less than one mile loop. Clean, well maintained. Linville Falls—near Linville, NC. There are a picnic area and bathrooms by the parking lot. Anyone can do it. Southern Blue Ridge Mountains, North Carolina, Southern Blue Ridge Mountains, South Carolina. Very nice trail. This area regularly receives over 100 inches of rain per year, and it hosts a large population of tropical plants that are typically found in the Caribbean and Central Americas. This hike primary trail can be used both directions and has a moderate overall physical rating. You'll see them soon, along with a metal footbridge over the river. You can also reach the bridge by walking/scrambling over rocks in the water to the right. Moderate terrain to bottom. A lower overlook is located at the bottom of 154 wooden steps. To reach the upper falls first, turn left on Foothills. The Falls at the very start are the big pay off and amazing. Lower Whitewater Falls is a smaller version of its bigger brother the Upper Whitewater Falls further upstream and across the state border.. That said, it was still 200ft tall as the waterfall cascades and plunges in a similar manner to its bigger brother. 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