Looking Glass Falls, North Carolina

Looking Glass Falls in March 2009

Looking Glass Falls just so happens to be one of my favorite waterfalls in North Carolina, though there are a number of other equally impressive falls in the state. Looking Glass Falls is found in Pisgah National Forest in the waterfall-infested Transylvania County. The first plus is that is very easy to visit, being found right off of US-276. The drive to the falls is amazingly beautiful, even in the time just before spring.

Once you get to the falls, you have two options. The first option is to view the falls without much effort. It is disability accessible when not going to the base. Even from this viewpoint, it’s impressive. If you have the option of heading down the base, you definitely should. From here, you can get some great shots of the falls. The rock hanging to the upper right of the falls is uniquely interesting, and the shadows that form on the falls make this a gem.

Directions:

  1. From Brevard, drive north on US-276.
  2. After about 5.5 miles you’ll pass the pullout/parking for Looking Glass Falls.
  3. Pull off on the right, park, and head to the falls.

Accessibility: 10/10 (easy)
Height: 60′
Length of Hike: negligible (essentially roadside)

Where in the World is Looking Glass Falls?

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Batson Creek/Connestee Falls, North Carolina

Should I suggest visiting Batson Creek and Connestee Creek Falls? I don’t know. On the one hand, the falls are right off of US-276 and it is very easy to get to the “viewpoint.” On the other hand, the view is rather disappointing. I get the sense that there may be a better viewpoint somewhere else, but I’m not totally sure.

The current viewpoint blocks off most of the view of Connestee Falls. Looking on the internet, I’ve seen pictures of the falls, but I’m not sure how they got to view them. It seemed pretty blocked off to me. If you look in the picture, you can see stairs that lead down next to Batson Creek Falls, but I think those are blocked from use as they look pretty slippery and just abruptly end! It seems that a boardwalk was built after I visited, but still doesn’t allow for great viewing. From what I understand, the best views are to be had for those that are in the housing development in the area.

Directions:

  1. The park, if it is open, is found off US-276 south of Brevard, about 6 miles south of the city.
  2. If you are driving south, the falls are on your right side at the Top of the Falls Realty center (which may be named something else now).

Accessibility: 10/10 (easy)
Height: 85′
Length of Hike: negligible

batson

Batson Creek/Connestee Falls in March 2009

Where in the World are Batson Creek/Connestee Falls?

Hooker Falls, North Carolina

Of the three waterfalls you can most easily view in the Dupont State Forest in North Carolina, Hooker Falls is the easiest of those three to visit. High and Triple Falls both require hikes up a steeper hill, though they are still clearly marked. There are many other falls in the area, though the trails can become a little bit confusing.

Hooker Falls is also the smallest of the three falls, and many people may skip in favor of the other two more photogenic falls. I had a fun time, though, at Hooker Falls. The height of the waterfall is not that significant, but that apparently makes it a favorite of kayakers. When I visited in early March, there were two kayakers actually plunging over the falls. I was excited to use my newer camera to capture the image as they plunged over the falls. That’s the only waterfall that I’ve ever seen somebody kayak over, so it sticks with me.

Directions:

  1. You’re going to want to get on US-64 heading south of Brevard. (Head north on US-64 if you’re coming from South Carolina.)
  2. Turn right on Crab Creek Rd. and head 4.3 miles to Dupont Rd.
  3. Turn right on Dupont Road, which is also called Station Road in places.
  4. Go for a ways until you cross the Little River. During busy times of the year, you’ll realize that right near the bridge is the parking area for the falls. You can also park on the side of the road.
  5. The short 0.25 mile (one-way) trail to Hooker Falls is clearly marked, and is found directly opposite the start of the trail leading to Triple/High Falls.

Accessibility: 10/10 (easy)
Height: 14′
Length of Hike: 0.5 miles round-trip

Hooker Falls (9)

Hooker Falls in March 2009

Hooker Falls (20)

Where in the World is Hooker Falls?

High Falls, North Carolina

In DuPont State Forest in North Carolina, there are multiple different waterfalls to be found. Some of them are along more trails that are more complicated to navigate, but three are found along one of the main trails. Hooker Falls, Triple Falls, and High Falls are all found along the Little River.

High Falls is my favorite of the three falls, though each of them are great in their own right. Of the three waterfalls, High Falls is the most difficult of the waterfalls to get to along the river. Hooker Falls is extremely easy to visit. Triple Falls is more difficult because of the incline. After passing Triple Falls, you keep heading up the steep incline to High Falls, which means you will be tired out at the end, and your legs will be burning. Even so, it is definitely worth it!!!! If you continue on past High Falls, there are more waterfalls, though I decided not to do that.

Directions:

  1. You’re going to want to get on US-64 heading south of Brevard. (Head north on US-64 if you’re coming from South Carolina.)
  2. Turn right on Crab Creek Rd. and head 4.3 miles to Dupont Rd.
  3. Turn right on Dupont Road, which is also called Station Road in places.
  4. Go for a ways until you cross the Little River. During busy times of the year, you’ll realize that right near the bridge is the parking area for the falls. You can also park on the side of the road.
  5. The trail to Triple Falls and High Falls starts across the road from the parking area.

Accessibility: 4/10 (moderate/strenuous)
Height: 125′
Length of Hike: 1.2 miles round-trip

High Falls (2) (1)

High Falls in March 2009

Where in the World is High Falls?

Toxaway Falls, North Carolina

Sometimes, a waterfall can be so close, and yet so far away. As you’re driving along US-64 in North Carolina, you’ll pass right over the Toxaway River only a few feet from the beginning of Toxaway Falls. There are no places to pull off on the road to get a better view, so give that idea up from the beginning. There is no place to stop on the one side of the river, so that’s also an issue. The only “view” is from a restaurant parking lot near the falls. You can’t get any closer to the falls because of private residences. Oh well, some waterfalls have to be nearly unobtainable. Who knows, ten years from now the view might be different.

Directions:

  1. The falls will be found on the Toxaway River, which US-64 intersects in Transylvania County, North Carolina.

Accessibility: 10/10 (easy)
Height: 150′
Length of Hike: roadside

Toxaway Falls in March 2009

Where in the World is Toxaway Falls?

Upper Whitewater Falls, North Carolina

I always have a hard time choosing favorites. I like most waterfalls that I’ve seen, and each of them has it’s own unique qualities, whether big or small. Upper Whitewater Falls has the distinction of being one of my favorites, though. It’s a big waterfall, but that alone does not make it my favorite. I’ve seen waterfalls that are bigger (Multnomah Falls), but that doesn’t mean that they’re my favorites. There is a complexity about Upper Whitewater Falls that puts it in the top ten.

At 411′ tall, it is one of the larger waterfalls east of the Mississippi River. It’s not a straight 411′ drop, but instead a series of drops that add up to the total. This is what makes Upper Whitewater Falls so beautiful. It’s narrow and then it’s wide, and then narrows down again. At some points, there are actually three separate “waterfalls”, or at least the river splits into three. In the picture below, you can’t even see the whole falls because it’s so large.

There are at least two easily accessible viewpoints. One of the viewpoints is right near the parking lot, while the second is accessed from a walk down some stairs. There may be a third viewpoint at the base of the falls, though I’m guessing that this is more complicated!

Directions:

  1. From US-64 in North Carolina, turn left onto NC-281.
  2. Head south on NC-281 to the entrance for Upper Whitewater Falls.
  3. After parking, pay the $2 entrance fee, which is definitely worth it. Then follow the paved trail to the upper view.

Accessibility: 10/10 (easy)
Height: 411′
Length of Hike: 0.4 miles round-trip

Upper Whitewater Falls (3)

Upper Whitewater Falls in March 2009

Where in the World is Upper Whitewater Falls?

Triple Falls, North Carolina

If the view were not so advantageous, Triple Falls might be classified as three separate falls. But with Triple Falls, you see all three drops simultaneously from multiple different viewpoints. This makes Triple Falls one of the more popular waterfalls in the waterfall-infested Transylvania County.

Triple Falls isn’t necessarily that easy to get to. Let’s just say the walk back down wasn’t even that simple, even though I was going downhill. There is a clearly defined trail, but the trail is consistently steep in parts. It’s not the kind of steep that requires strategically placed ropes, but it is steep enough to wear you out. Unless you’re really out of shape, you should be able to do it, but plan to take a well-deserved break at the falls. If you love waterfalls or love the feel of lactic acid burning away in your calves, you can head even further up the trail to the equally spectacular High Falls. (Hooker Falls is on the opposite side of Dupont Road.)

Directions:

  1. You’re going to want to get on US-64 heading south of Brevard. (Head north on US-64 if you’re coming from South Carolina.)
  2. Turn right on Crab Creek Rd. and head 4.3 miles to Dupont Rd.
  3. Turn right on Dupont Road, which is also called Station Road in places.
  4. Go for a ways until you cross the Little River. During busy times of the year, you’ll realize that right near the bridge is the parking area for the falls. You can also park on the side of the road.
  5. The trail to Triple Falls and High Falls starts across the road from the parking area.

Accessibility: 6/10 (moderate)
Height: 120′
Length of Hike: 1 mile round-trip

Triple Falls

Triple Falls in March 2009

Where in the World is Triple Falls?