The Ultimate Guide To Asheville and the Western North Carolina Mountains
The Ultimate Guide to Asheville & the Western North Carolina Mountains

The Online Version of the Best-selling Regional Guidebook

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    Within an hour’s drive of Asheville and Hendersonville are a number of truly spectacular waterfalls in the Brevard area. A great day trip can be planned to visit these easily accessible falls. Be sure and take a picnic lunch. Besides the close-by Brevard area waterfalls, there are a few others worth mentioning.
    Chimney Rock Park  has the 404-foot high
Hickory Nut Falls, one of the tallest in the eastern United States. The park has an short hiking trail, which leads to the base of this magnificent falls. In the Boone area, about a two hour drive from Asheville is Linville Falls in Linville Gorge, the best-known waterfall in the Appalachian Mountains, and one of the most scenic.
    Located in nearby
Flat Rock is the little man-made waterfall at the Highland Lake Dam. This delightful spot is worth driving by if you are in the area. It is located on Highland Lake Rd., off Hwy. 25 between Flat Rock and Hendersonville.
Brevard waterfalls (Transylvania County) are a real treasure and worth a visit at any time of the year. There are hundreds to choose from but due to space restrictions, only some of the major ones will be listed below. The most popular and easily accessible is Looking Glass Falls in the Pisgah National Forest. It is suggested that if you wish to visit the waterfalls, you first check into the Brevard Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center in Brevard and pick up a copy of their “Land of the Waterfalls” guide and map. Another proven resource is Kevin Adams best selling book North Carolina Waterfalls.

Looking Glass Falls in the Brevard Area
Location: Pisgah National Forest
Distance: 1 hour from Asheville
Address: Highway 276, Pisgah National Forest
Telephone: Pisgah District Office: 828-877-3350, 828-257-4203
Of Note: The most popular waterfall in North Carolina, it is a picturesque and unbroken rush of water 30 feet wide and 60 feet high. Right along Highway 276 for immediate easy access.
Cautionary Note: While all of the falls are beautiful they can be treacherous. Death or injury may be only seconds away if one misjudges the force of moving water or height of the cascades. Rocks are slippery when wet. Do not attempt to climb the rocks beside the falls or venture near the top. Viewing the falls is safe, family fun only if you stay on the designated trails and viewing areas.
Fees: None
Allow: 1-2 hours
Nearby: Pisgah National Forest, Blue Ridge Parkway
Resources: Brevard Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center, 35 West Main Street, Brevard, NC 28712; 800-648-4523
Directions: From Asheville, take NC 280 South. NC 280 begins as Airport Rd. after you leave Hendersonville Hwy. (US 25). Take a right into Pisgah National Forest at Highway 276 in Pisgah Forest just before you reach Brevard. Follow 276 for 6 miles.

Other Western North Carolina Waterfalls
Bird Rock Falls: Take Highway 64 West from Brevard 8.5 miles and turn right on NC 215. Continue approximately 9 miles. Falls are on the left just below the confluence of Shoal Creek and the North Fork of the French Broad River in the Balsam Grove Community.

Bridal View Falls: Bridal Veil Falls is unique because you can drive your car right underneath it! The water falls 120 feet from above, right over the highway. From
Brevard take Highway 64 West, and look for the sign  2.5 miles west of Highlands in the Cullasaja Gorge.

Cullasaja Falls: The lower portion of Cullasaja Falls is a cascade of water which flows about 250 feet down. It is located on the Cullasaja River, 9 miles west of Highlands off Highway 64 in the Cullasaja Gorge. Cullasja Falls is only visible from your car, there is no adequate pull-off spot from the road.

Wild & Furry Animals of the Southern Appalachian Mountains, by Lee James Pantas

Dry Falls: Dry Falls is located on Highway 64 between Franklin and Highlands, and  you can find the falls with a short, easy walk. Once there you can walk right behind them without getting wet! A well-marked path and hand rail to guide you behind and around the 75-foot curtain of rushing water.

Linville Falls: Linville Falls is located on the Blue Ridge Parkway at mile post 316.3. Two main hiking trails lead to beautiful views of the Linville Falls. Both begin at the Linville Falls Visitor Center, which is operated by the National Park Service. The trails range in difficulty from moderate to strenuous.

Rainbow Falls: Follow Highway 64 West from Brevard 18 miles to Whitewater Rd. (NC 281) and turn left 2.5 miles. A trail begins at a turn in the road and continues downstream past Drift Falls a half-mile to the 200 foot high Rainbow Falls.

Silver Run Falls:
Silver Run Falls has a drop of 30 feet into a quiet pool below, and are located off NC 197, 4.1 miles south of
Cashiers. Park in the pull-off on the left.

Toxaway Falls
Take Highway 64 West from
Brevard 15.5 miles. The highway crosses the top of the falls 123 feet just below Toxaway Dam. The area was named Toxaway (Red Bird) by the Cherokee Indians. Easily visible from the road.

Upper Creek Falls:
A steep, 0.8-mile trail leads to this popular cascading waterfall.  Upper Creek Falls is located in the Jonas Ridge Area of Burke County, and is only accessible by hiking in. The Falls are located 13.5 miles from
Morganton. Take NC 181 North from Morganton. The parking area is on the right about 6 miles north of the Pisgah National Forest boundary.

Whitewater Falls: A spectacular plunge of 411 feet makes this the tallest waterfall east of the Mississippi. A park with parking and restrooms provides easy access. Take US 64 West from Brevard, go 18 miles to Whitewater Rd. (NC 281), turn left 8 miles to park entrance on left. Falls can be viewed from the end of a paved road 100 yards from the parking area.


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Map of the Western North Carolina Mountains

Walking, hiking, and biking are all great options for outdoor recreation. While some people prefer hiking challenging tall mountain peaks, others may just want to relax with an easier Central Park bike rental tour instead. Getting outside and enjoying nature wherever you happen to be is the key.


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