The upper section is a huge free fall, probably 150 feet. Look for signs directing you to Whitewater Falls. You can either scramble through the lush undergrowth to find your own personal angle of Whitewater Falls, or you can easily access a spectacular panoramic view on the paved walkway. Stay on the marked trail, tell someone where you're going, pack safety and wayfinding essentials, and don't rely on a mobile phone to find your way. 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. LOCATION:near Cashiers and Highlands North Carolina, PACK:our Osprey day pack and our hiking gear list, OFFICIAL MAP: Nat Geo 785 Trails Illustrated Map (find it at Trailful Outdoor Co.). Whitewater Falls is part of that group, very close to the South Carolina border. His mission? Difficulty: 8 if you take the stairs Views open immediately to the east from the trailhead, where the rounded, rolling southern Appalachian mountains stretch far into the horizon. 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. The hike departs the trailhead and parking area off NC 281 (view maps and driving directions), following the paved Foothills Trail northbound from the picnic area. From the intersection of US Hwy. Whitewater Falls on the Whitewater River is the last river in the Jocassee Gorge area just before you reach South Carolina. Whitewater Falls is the Unofficial name of this waterfall. Whitewater Falls is the highest waterfall east of the Rockies, falling 811 ft.! Easy 10 minute walk to a viewing platform at the end of an asphalt path. Cascading waterfalls plunge over towering cliffs all along the East Coast, and more than one has been claimed to be the tallest, highest or greatest volume (including Amicalola Falls in North Georgia). Turn left on NC-281. However, it is a difficult climb back up. There is a small fee to park here, but it’s on the honor system as I’ve never seen any park or forest official here actually collecting money. Hike to the beautiful cascades of High Falls at Lake Glenville, a gorgeous multi-drop falls set in a rocky forest. As you approach the entrance, it may look like it isn't a place open to the public; but it … 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, favorite Highlands and Cashiers hiking trails. Did you have trouble accessing the trail, or notice some recent trail updates or storm damage? Your Address * Comments. Many people hike the old road from the upper overlook thinking it will take them to the top of the falls… Check out the full list of our favorite Highlands and Cashiers hiking trails for even more adventures. Forest: Nantahala National Forest District: Highlands Ranger District Description: Whitewater Falls is accessed by way of a steep, 1.0 mile trail through a cove forest, beginning at the overlook for the falls, and descending to a bridge crossing the Whitewater River. For more information, contact: Height: 411 feet Much of it parallels the Whitewater River. Upper Whitewater Falls is on the NC side of the border and the Lower Whitewater Falls is on the SC side. ALL PHOTOS ARE COPYRIGHT ERIC CHAMPLIN OR SUMMIT19 STUDIO LLC. From the turnaround at the lower end of the parking area, a paved path leads to an upper overlook of the falls. From the parking area, a moderate hike of 45 minutes to an hour will get you to an overlook where you’ll find an unparalleled view of Lower Whitewater Falls. $1 extra per passenger for vehicles over 7 passengers. We parked and took the half mile, up hill walk to view the falls which, of course, are spectacular. Turn right, drive up to … Go to the Asheville Airport/Brevard Exit (exit 40) and take a right onto US 64. Whitewater Falls. This is also a dandy little spot to take a swim. Whitewater Falls Recreation Area is a popular spot to visit, so be prepared to see some other folks while you're there. The Upper Falls plummets 411 ft. and is 60 miles from downtown Asheville in the Nantahala National Forest.It's on the Whitewater River in the Jocassee Gorge area of North Carolina - in Jackson County.The 400-ft. Lower Falls can be accessed from a different location in South Carolina. It is described as being near Whitewater cemetery, but the cemetery is quite a ways north of the ghost town site. Some sources say it's the highest falls east of the Mississippi River at 411', but I'm not so sure. And the picnic area near the trailhead makes a great post-hike snack spot set in a rocky, shady forest. Both the upper and lower falls feature scenic overlooks that can be accessed by car. When we visited Lower Whitewater Falls, we were staying in Brevard, North Carolina so we’ll describe the directions from there.. There are a series of over 100 steps that lead down to a lower viewing area as well. Location & Directions. Lower Whitewater Falls. A moderate one-hour, two-mile hike along the Foothills Trail and a spur trail takes you to a spectacular overlook. © 2014 - 2020 Trailful Outdoor Co. // Made in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Mid-hike, the trail scores its first views of the upper waterfall before descending a set of wooden stairs to catch a closer, wider view of the waterfall. Scattered benches line the trail as it curves, meanders and climbs, offering great resting spots to enjoy the increasingly more beautiful view. WHITEWATER FALLS DIRECTIONS Bad Creek Access to Upper Whitewater Falls is a 2.3-mile section of the trail. Contact us here, and thanks for helping us keep this site updated! Whitewater Falls is one of the tallest chains of waterfalls in the eastern U.S. and the Lower Falls are not as frequently visited but just as impressive. This waterfall is not known to have been named, but considering Gail Falls, a mile or so upstream, was named at one point, I'd be surprised if this waterfall didn't recieve similar attention. 64 and NC Hwy. Let's work together to keep these fantastic trails maintained and open for use! We were in the area on 2/22/2020 and stopped for a short visit to the falls. Make another left and drive north on SR 130 (SC), which becomes SR 281 (NC) at the state line. He's the co-owner of Trailful Outdoor Co, a locally-owned hiking outfitter shop in Hiawassee in the Georgia mountains near the Appalachian Trail. Views open immediately to the east from the trailhead, where the rounded, rolling southern Appalachian mountains stretch far into the horizon. This hike turns from the platform at the base of the stairs, retracing the outbound route and climbing the wooden stairs to the upper overlook. This waterfall has a claim as the tallest waterfall east of the Rockies, which is apparently disputed. Google Directions Descend into the lush Panthertown Valley to Schoolhouse Falls, a beautiful single-drop waterfall that cascades into an enormous, shallow, pebble-lined pool below. Directions: 1.) So from Brevard, we drove about 17 miles southwest on NC64 (Rosman Hwy) then turned left onto Hwy 281 going south.. There is net ascent of about 800 feet (200 m). Coordinates: 44.70444, -121.82972 Elevation: 5369 feet USGS Map: Mount Jefferson 7 1/2" View this location in Google Earth However, we recommend this area highly because of the magnitude of the falls and great viewing area. So from Brevard, we drove about 17 miles southwest on NC64 (Rosman Hwy) then turned left onto Hwy 281.. During our visit to the Lower Whitewater Falls, there was ample parking at the trailhead parking lot The crown jewel of these falls is Whitewater Falls - the highest waterfall east of the Rockies. Please support them by making a donation or joining a volunteer day. Get Directions to Whitewater Falls. 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. It’s a gorgeous waterfall, and well worth the half-mile (round trip) hike to view a 400+ foot cascade. From Asheville, NC: Take I 240-West to I 26-West. The hike trails a short, paved stretch of the Foothills Trail through a wildflower-filled forest, and catches some stunning views of Lake Jocassee nestled in the rolling surrounding mountains. A lower overlook is located at the bottom of 154 wooden steps. Trailful Outdoor Co. is a registered trademark of Summit19 Studio LLC.Privacy Policy | Terms of Use No photo, illustration, data, or text on this website may be reproduced, published, or distributed without prior written permission and license. The trail climbs elevation, meandering as it rises beside a tall rock outcrop on the trail’s left. The upper section is a huge free fall, probably 150 feet. From the base of the stairs, an unpaved trail provides access to the 76-mile Foothills Trail, descending along the river to Lower Whitewater Falls in South Carolina. The hike reaches the lower observation deck at just under .3 mile, catching broad views of the rushing waterfall. This map shows our approximate route while exploring this trail, but does not replace an official trail map. The best time to visit would be through the week to try and avoid any large crowds. A hike a bit south of here leads to the lower falls. Annual passes available. Always leave no trace, pack out everything you pack in, and if you see trash, pick it up and pack it out. The waterfall holds a (sometimes disputed) claim as the highest waterfall east of the Rockies. The Whitewater Falls are absolutely stunning. Directions: From Walhalla, SC, drive SC 11 east past Tamassee, SC to Salem, SC at the intersection of SC 11 and SC 130. In Whitewater’s case, it’s loosely defined as “a continuous tumble of some sort.”. The entire path is paved and gradually ascends the ridge before coming to a wide viewing area of the falls. Please refer to the official trail map for the most current and accurate route. You’ll pass the entrance to. $2 per vehicle (up to 7 passengers). Coordinates: 35.0716, -82.8869 Elevation: USGS Map: Reid 7 1/2" Directions are … The Lower Whitewater Falls comprises a dramatic 200-foot drop. The view only gets better, though, as the trail begins a descent down a series of wooden stairs and landings. 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