Waterfalls in Haywood County, NC

Graveyard Fields, Midnight Hole, Skinny-Dip Falls

Waterfalls Near Asheville

Haywood County boarders Buncombe County on its eastern site and borders Tennessee to its west. The county seat of is Waynesville, which is a located less than 30 miles due west of Asheville on Hwy 40. For our waterfalls guide we have chosen to feature eight waterfalls in Haywood County including several along the Blue Ridge Parkway. There waterfalls have a wide range of trail difficulties, sizes, and types.

For more on Haywood County visit Wikipedia’s Haywood County Article.

Midnight Hole

Directions: Midnight Hole is located in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. From Asheville, take I-40 west until just after the Tennessee border. Take the Waterville Exit and turn left off of the exit ramp to reach Waterville Road, which is also on the left. Drive on Waterville Road for 2.1 miles until you reach a crossroads. Drive straight through the crossroads to enter the national park, and park your car at the end of that road. Big Creek Trail begins just before the parking area and runs alongside Big Creek. Hike along this road until you notice a well-worn footpath leading from Big Creek Trail to the falls.

Trail Length: 1.4 miles
Trail Difficulty: Easy

Skinny-Dip Falls

Directions: Drive to Milepost 417 on the Blue Ridge Parkway and park at the Looking Glass Rock overlook. The trailhead is located across the road from the parking area. Bear left when you reach the upper part of the trail. (Note: Hikers can reach a different waterfall by bearing right instead. It takes about 20 minutes to walk from the parking area to this second, lesser known, waterfall.)

Trail Length: 0.5 miles
Trail Difficulty: Easy to Moderate

Waterfalls of Graveyard Fields:

Second Falls

Directions: Drive to Milepost 418.8 on the Blue Ridge Parkway and park your car in the large, paved parking area. Take the paved trail from the north end of the overlook. You will arrive at Yellowstone Prong after 0.2 miles. Cross the creek and make a right. Continue until you see a sign indicating that you have reached Lower Falls. The trail then forks to the right and descends to the base.

Trail Length: 0.3 miles
Trail Difficulty: Moderate

Yellowstone Falls

Directions: Follow the directions to Second Falls, but instead of turning right at the Lower Falls sign, make a left instead and continue on for another 0.25 miles. (Heads Up! This fall can also be seen from your car while driving on the Blue Ridge Parkway, almost one mile south of the Graveyard Fields overlook.)

Trail Length: 1.1 miles total
Trail Difficulty: Ranges from moderate to difficult. Please note that the last 0.6 miles of the trail, the part that descends to the base of Yellowstone Falls, is very difficult and potentially dangerous for inexperienced hikers.

Upper Falls

Directions: Follow the directions to Second Falls. After crossing Yellowstone Prong, take a left onto the Graveyard Fields Loop Trail. This trail will lead you to the falls.

Trail Length: 1.6 miles
Trail Difficulty: Easy to Moderate

Waterfalls in the Sam Knob area:

Waterfall on Sams Knob Trail

Directions: From the intersection of N.C. 215 and the Blue Ridge Parkway, drive 0.8 miles north on N.C. 215. You will see a parking area on your right. Hop across Bubbling Spring Branch and follow the old railroad grade until you reach the cement bridge below the falls.

Trail Length: 0.7 miles
Trail Difficulty: Easy

Flat Laurel Creek Cascades

Directions: Follow the directions to the waterfall on Sam Knob. Continue for another 1.3 miles.

Trail Length: 2 miles
Trail Difficulty: Easy

Bubbling Spring Branch Cascades

Directions: Follow the directions to the parking area for Sam Knob Trail (as described for Waterfall on Sam Knob Trail above), but continue driving past the parking area on N.C. 215 for one more mile. There is a pull-off where you can park, from which the falls are visible.

Trail Length: Falls can be viewed from the roadside.
Trail Difficulty: No Sweat! Handicapped Accessible.

Waterfalls Near Asheville

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Waterfalls in Haywood County, NC