Pisgah Forest Waterfalls | Hike ot our favorite Waterfalls in the Pisgah.
There are many waterfalls to visit within the Pisgah National Forest and Transylvania County. We recommend that you pick up one of the following resources to find where they are and how to get to them:
1. There is a brochure published by the Brevard Chamber of Commerce that shows the major waterfalls in Transylvania County. It has a map, photos, and directions to the falls. You can get this at the Chamber of Commerce, and we also have a supply of them at the Pisgah Forest Visitor Center.
2. There is a wonderful map available showing the waterfalls of Western North Carolina. This map is available at the Visitor Center for $11.95 plus tax. It lists numerous falls that are not covered in the Chamber's brochure.
3. There are also several books with photographs and directions to various waterfall. The most noted one locally is North Carolina Waterfalls: A Hiking and Photography Guide. It is available at amazon here.
4. The Forest Service has a free handout called "Popular Waterfalls in Pasgah Forest". It is available here in pdf format.
Our Favorite Waterfalls | Why we Like Them
Looking Glass Falls - This is the nicest and most iconic and popular falls in the Pisgah District. A photo is shown below. It is very popular because it has easy access and a pretty reliable water supply, so it almost always looks great. Looking Glass Falls is on highway 276, four miles above the Ranger Station just north of the intersection with Forest Service Road 475. There is parking for about 30 cars, and a sidewalk to a viewing platform. About 90 steps lead to the area below the falls.
Moore Cove Falls - We like this falls more for the hike to the falls and the unusual rock formation of the falls than the waterfall itself. It is located on highway 276 one mile north of Looking Glass Falls. There is a footbridge across the stream and a kiosk at the head of the trail. The trail itself is a 1.5 mile round trip rated easy, although you will have to watch your footing in some areas. It is a lovely trail which has good populations of wild flowers, especially in the spring. The water flows over a rock ledge onto the rocks below and provides an opportunity to rest behind the waterfall in a natural stone grotto.
Daniel Ridge Falls - also called Jackson Falls and Tom Springs Falls. We like this falls because it is an easy hike to the falls, and to get there we cross a lovely bridge over the beautiful Davidson River. It is nice, but not spectacular, and it is a little difficult to see from the forest service road. It is, however, one that we recommend because of the easy access. To get there, fake Forest Service Road 475 from highway 276. Go past the entrance to the Cove Creek Group Camp to the next parking area on the North of the road. Follow the gated road across the bridge and take the road (more of a track in the weeds) to the right after you cross the river. The falls will be on your left. Caution - there always seems to be lots of Poison Ivy on this road.
Slick Rock Falls - This small falls is easily accessible, but not very interesting. It is about 1.5 miles up Forest Service Road 475B from FS 475. Turn onto FS475B a couple hundred yards west of the driveway to the Pisgah Center for Wildlife Education. The falls is located on the right side of 475B near the trailhead to trail 117 - a trail that is used a lot by people climbing Looking Glass Rock. The falls is less than 50 yards from the parking area. It is best to go after a very recent rain.
Cove Creek Falls - A friend who also volunteers at the ranger station just posted on his facebook page that a visitor reported they could not find Cove Creek Falls. He went and checked, and it is still there. The waterfall guides are a little unclear on this falls - my opinion. Begin your hike at the Cove Creek Group Camp on FS475. Walk into the Cove Creek camping area and go to the vault toilets in the second campground you come to. Follow the trail to the left of the toilet. It soon crosses the creek on a bridge. Bear right after crossing the creek. Continue to where the blazed trail turns leaft and goes up hill. At this point follow the trail along the creek going upstream to the falls. You will have to scramble a bit over some rocks and a tree or two to get to the falls.
Courthouse Creek Falls - This beautiful falls is a short hike from FS Road 140 at the intersection with Summey Cove Trail. Follow the wide (and often wet) trail going downstream from the road. An unblazed trail on the left leads down to the falls. NOTE: Bridge construction on the low water ford will halt driving access to the falls from May 5, 2014 until mid-October. While non-motorized traffic will be allowed, you will not be able to use the ford. Access to the falls is available via the Summey Cove Trail.