Summary: This is a great short hike with some awesome waterfalls. However, judging by the amounts and types of trash I found on this hike, it is probably a popular area for the locals on the weekends.
You can begin the trail on either side of the parking lot. I started on the "Upper Falls" side. Descend switchbacks down to the creek. The trail here is located at the top of the high falls. Be careful not to get too close to the edge! Continue across the creek through a campsite. Again descend to various side trails that give you views of the Upper Falls. Continue downstream until you see the Lower Falls. Just downstream of the falls look for the trail on the other side of the creek. Cross the creek and ascend switchbacks to return to the parking lot. Please do not shortcut the switchbacks! This causes unnecessary resource damage and erosion.
Trailhead: From Morganton, NC, take HWY 181N towards Linville. The trailhead and parking lot are approximately 0.8 miles North of the Barkhouse Picnic Area on HWY 181. You will see a brown and yellow USFS sign on the right side of the road. If driving from the Linville area, travel HWY 181S. Approximately 4.1 miles South of the HWY 181/183 junction, you will see the sign, parking lot, and trailhead on the left. (Lat:35.96029 Lon:-81.86101)
Trail Guides for Upper Creek Falls Loop Trail:
North Carolina Hiking Trails
by Allen de Hart (Appalachian Mountain Club Books)
Best Seasons: Year-Round
User Groups: Hikers, Dogs,
Ranger Contact: U.S. Forest Service, Nebo, NC 828-652-2144
Localhikes Reporter: This hike was submitted by Tim Johnson, who has posted 15 other hikes on this site
Trail Reviews Submit your own review
Reviewed by Big E on 10/3/2010
My group including my 7 and 3yr old took the hike. It was a cool and windy day but we all really enjoyed it. The scenery at the upper and lower falls was great. It was well worth the climb back out. We all enjoyed this one and we will be back to do it again.
Reviewed by brian on 10/22/2009
only did the upper trail, I had just done the greentown trail and it was getting late. Great view from top of falls.I plan on making it back to see the lower part.Check out the raven cliffs gorge section to see some amazing falls and cascades it is about 1.5 miles downsteam from where the greentown tail intersects the creek.
Reviewed by amy on 10/25/2008
My boyfriend and I have been camping there for a while now. We love everything about it. The creek is good to jump rocks on, and there are so many trails around. It's one of my favorite spots!
Reviewed by Adam on 1/29/2008
Talk about some good scenery. Love this hike and have many memories hiking from the lower trail all the way up to the upper falls fly fishing along the way. If you want true untainted beauty make a day out of hiking the creek- beware waders advised as this hike goes from moderate- to incredible hardcore!
Reviewed by Debbie on 11/12/2006
Very nice hike. Couldn't do the loop because the creek was to high and couldn't cross over in order to follow trail down stream.
Reviewed by joe on 12/20/2005
My girlfriend and i have been going to upper creek falls for about six years now. In fact i asked her on August 20 2005 on top of the water fall to marry me, she said yes. Hopefully in the near futuer we'll have a little clan of are own to go spend the day up there.
Notice: Traveling in the backcountry can be hazardous. You are responsible for informing yourself about these hazards and taking necessary precautions. Information on this web site comes from volunteer reporters and may contain errors or omissions. A current guidebook and proper equipment are essential for safe enjoyment of the hikes posted on this site.
Keys: North Carolina Hiking, North Carolina Trails, North Carolina Hikes, Burke County Hiking, Burke County Trails, Burke County Hikes