Waterfall is one of a kind and hard to beat. The visitor center is open, but the exhibit area, classroom, and auditorium remain closed. Hiking Trail. Turn right into Gorges State Park. We encourage park visitors to conduct their own First Day Hikes with members of their household. We came here to hike the Rainbow Falls Trail. Le Conte. Driving to the Trailhead: Take Historic Nature Trail Drive (traffic light #8 in Gatlinburg) into the park.At mile 3.4, just after the road becomes one-way, turn right into the Rainbow Falls Parking Area. IMO, it’s better than Turtleback Falls so if you want to stop here, feel free to. There's a mild eddy to the right of falls and current to the left so swim towards the shore once you take your plunge. Hiking trails take you to the top & bottom of this fall, but hiking is not necessary to view this waterfall. Sorry for any inconvienance. Although the Rainbow Falls Trail is difficult and will take 3-5 hours to hike, this is one of the most enjoyable and scenic hiking trails in the Smoky Mountains. You will cross into South Carolina approx. Hikers report that the beautiful Rainbow Falls, lush vegatation, and amazing scenery make the difficult hike well worth it. It’s mostly downhill on the way to the falls and uphill on the way out. The are 2 sections of narrow, very shallow streams you cross on stepping stones. Within the next.3 mi you will come upon Turtleback falls (10ft), and a 3rd ' … The trail is primarily used for hiking, and camping and is accessible year-round. Dry Falls is a kid-friendly hike with only a quarter of a mile trail to reach the falls. Rainbow Falls. Loved it! It is not recommended that anyone swim in the Horse Pasture River. Its combination of height and power are almost unmatched (save for perhaps Linville and Whitewater falls). Very wet but a beautiful day with family. Rainbow Falls Trail is a 5.5 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Gatlinburg, Tennessee that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. You will … Picnic shelters and group campsites that accommodate less than 50 people are open. Rainbow Falls is a 150-foot waterfall that boasts impressive 360-degree views. ). awesome hike....the water was flowing heavy. Rainbow Falls is one of the most spectacular waterfall settings in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. Rainbow Falls. Rainbow Falls Trail. View the cascading waters as they plunge over the rock ledges of Rainbow Falls on their way to Lake Superior. Directions: Entrance from Hwy 281 (Whitewater Hwy) approx 1 mi south of Sapphire NC (junc US HWY 64). Serious injuries and deaths have occurred along this trail. NOTE: Pets are not allowed on this trail. The 7,500-acre park incorporates a portion the long-distance Foothills Trail and touches Lake Jocassee at the South Carolina border. Easy trail perfect for all types of adventurers. The Rainbow Falls Trail to Mount LeConte is a challenging 13.8 mile hike with a total elevation gain of 3,993 feet. Cullasaja Falls – Visible from U.S. 64, in Cullasaja Gorge, 11 mi. The 2.5-mile loop hike can be strenuous at parts but continuously rewards you with beauty, including the stunning Crabtree Falls that cascades a total of 70 feet. All campsites are open. 10/10 recommend. A properly worn mask or face covering, covering both the nose and the mouth, is required to enter the visitor center. Great trail, tremendous views. Half-Day Hike: From the Rainbow Falls parking area, head out on the Rainbow Falls Trail. https://www.exploreasheville.com/stories/post/rainbow-falls-and-turtleback-hike Visiting the Falls. Rainbow Falls gets its name from the mist that’s generated & often creates a rainbow effect when the sun is bright. and turn R (W) on US 64 to return to Cashiers. As you continue on, you'll soon come to Rainbow Falls, which is big and powerful. It takes about 2.2 miles to get to the base of the waterfall from the park's registration area. Turn left into the access to the Gorges State Park Visitor Center. Great trail, and the most beautiful waterfall I’ve ever seen.. It's about 1.3 miles to Hidden Falls (about 2/10 of a mile before Rainbow Falls). COVID-19 information for parks under Modified Stay at Home Order, Maintain a social distance of 6 feet, regardless of the behavior of others, Bring a mask or face covering; they are required to be worn inside buildings and when social distancing cannot be implemented, Share the trail — warn other trail users of your presence, step to the side or wait at the end of a bridge, Do not enter restrooms until others have cleared out and please be patient when staff is cleaning them, Wash or sanitize your hands before, during, and after your visit, Do not share equipment like phones or cameras with other visitors, If the park seems crowded when you arrive, come back another time, Stay at home if you are exhibiting symptoms. weekdays only, 121 W. Jones St. Rainbow Falls at Gorges State Park, N.C., a beautiful hike in stunning GoPro 4K quality (4k 60fps). Continue down the river trail. Details about taking this hike: Trail: Rainbow Falls Trail. FEATURED IN. After driving another 2.2 miles you'll enter the one-way Cherokee Orchard Loop Road. It takes about 2.2 miles to get to the base of the waterfall from the park's registration area. There are signs to indicate when you are entering and leaving State Park property. Starting from Light 8 in Gatlinburg, turn onto Historic Nature Trail / Airport Road. The 80-foot waterfall is the tallest single-drop waterfall in the national park, cascading dramatically over a jutting cliff face and … The Horsepasture River thunders down a 125-foot drop spraying up a mist that creates rainbows that sparkle in the sunlight. Rainbow Falls, Stairway Falls, Turtle-back Falls, and Bust-yo-butt Falls! If you stay straight on the trail, you'll end up at another waterfall: Jones Gap Falls. Beautiful autumn hike to see the 3 falls along this trail. The park has a parking lot, picnic area, a self-guided Nature Trail Loop and a trail … Approximately 10 miles east of Cashiers, NC, turn right (south) on US-64 and NC-281 at Sapphire. This trail goes by Rainbow Falls and Turtleback Falls. A moderate 1.7 mile hike gets you to the first two falls but a little trail takes you up to the third one that boasts a swimming hole at it's base. Return to NC 215, turn L (S), cont. This short hike along the Horsepasture River features outstanding views of 4 large waterfalls and good camping. This 150-ft. tall waterfall is impressive, especially after rainy weather that swells the Horsepasture River. The hike to Rainbow Falls in the Great Smoky Mountains begins from the Rainbow Falls Trailhead, located just outside of Gatlinburg. Hike, Swim. Turtle Back is a very safe place for riding the waterfalls. IMAGE VIA @GOLDNEOPHOBIA | INSTAGRAM. View the contact sheet for the email address and phone number of each park », (General information – please do not call this number for camping or park-specific questions), Office Hours to the 60 ft. falls. Directions: This 411 ft. waterfall is higher than Niagara Falls and is the highest waterfall in the eastern U.S. The area surrounding Panthertown is incredibly scenic and offers some of our all-time favorite waterfall hikes in Western NC. Beautiful views! Use the Grassy Ridge Access entrance off of Hwy 281s, in Sapphire. Parks are open every other day of the holiday season, including New Year's Day. The Hike to Rainbow Falls Julie starting the hike to Rainbow Falls from the Grassy Ridge Trailhead. Walk-up camping are available only at certain loops at Jordan Lake and Kerr Lake and at backcountry campsites with self-registration boxes at trailheads. The Rainbow Falls Trail continues for approximately 4 miles beyond the falls to the summit of Mount Le Conte. The hike is rated strenuous, not due to the length, but due to the hilly nature of the trail itself. The hike to Rainbow Falls is a steep climb that crosses over several foot bridges along the river. At the 1.25 mile mark is a very nice clearing for tenting. Hiking boots recommended. Swim beaches and areas are closed. Reviewed June 3, 2018. Go right and just keep following the trail. Camping reservations must be done online. Absolutely worth it. Rainbow Falls Trail located in Gorges State Park, NC is a rally nice deep woods hike, that begins in Gorges State Park and ends in Pisgah National Forest at either Rainbow Falls or Turtleback Falls.. You will cross into South Carolina approx. Turn right into Gorges State Park. for 10.7 mi. At about the halfway point, the trail turns to the right to head up to Rainbow Falls. 1 mi. Absolutely amazing! This popular trail is jointly maintained by Gorges State Park and the Pisgah Ranger District. 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