Two or three times a year I have to get my mountain fix. To do this, we drive 4-5 hours to the Blue Ridge region of North Carolina. Over the years we have stayed in Asheville, Little Switzerland, or somewhere else close to the Blue Ridge Parkway. The small mountain town of of Brevard was recommended to us by several people, being a favorite weekend destination for a lot of Charlestonians. We had read about the movies that were filmed there (The Hunger Games, The Last of the Mohicans) and were intrigued by the many waterfalls (250!) in Transylvania County.
Where We Stayed
We rented a tiny house outside of Brevard through Airbnb. The cabin was clean and cozy—just what we needed for a weekend escape. We were also some of the first people to stay there. There were fire pits for roasting marshmallows for S’mores. (We smashed our previous record for most S’mores consumed in one sitting.) Best of all, it was close by to the waterfalls we wanted to see in DuPont State Forest.
One Hike, Three Waterfalls
The highlight of DuPont State Forest is a hiking trail with a big payoff—three waterfalls all within a 3-mile round trip hike. Hooker Falls, Triple Falls, and High Falls can all be accessed from the Hooker Falls parking lot. We went in mid-October when the colors were at their best. The weather was spectacular, if a little on the warm side, which drew large crowds. My advice is to go early or on a weekday, otherwise you’ll be sharing the trail with lots of people. And also maybe a cute pig—one family brought their miniature pig with them on their hike, and it was adorable.
Walk Behind a Waterfall
Highway 276 in the Pisgah National Forest offers several short hikes leading to stunning waterfalls. We found Moore Cove Falls by accident. We were trying to find Looking Glass Falls. In our defense, the waterfalls are located about a mile apart from one another. Both are great to visit!
The hike is relatively easy (1.5 miles round trip). There’s a wooden bridge across the creek at the beginning of the trail, and the pathway stays close to the stream for most of the hike. Depending on how much rain the area has gotten, the falls can be as faint as a trickle or much stronger. There’s a large rock overhang that is a perfect cove to walk underneath to see what it’s like behind the falls.
Looking Glass Falls
A popular spot for photographers, Looking Glass Falls is one of the most visited waterfalls in western North Carolina. It’s named for Looking Glass Rock, a large monolith that’s also a popular (though strenuous) destination for rock climbers. A short walk down to an observation deck leads you straight to the falls. There will be a crowd, but it’s a must-see!
Side Trip: Traveler’s Rest
Head to the South Carolina border for the small-town charm of Traveler’s Rest to find shopping and dining. This mountain town is the happy hippie heart of South Carolina. We’ve stopped at Tandem Creperie more than once for a cup of coffee and brunch. I’d also recommend checking out Swamp Rabbit Brewery and Sidewall Pizza Company.