Drift Falls via Rainbow Falls Trail

7 reviews #3 hike out of 510 in
3.9 mi
Distance
2 hrs 4 min
Time
terrain
388 ft
Elev Gain

Overview

This is a easy out and back trail to Drift Falls in Gorges State Park. This trail goes by Rainbow Falls and Turtleback Falls. These falls are spectacular and worth seeing in any season.

From the Visitor Center the trail leads upstream to spectacular Rainbow Falls. Continuing upriver, Turtleback Falls (Umbrella Falls) are reached in 0.3miles. The trail ends at a property boundary where there is a view of Drift Falls (also known as Bust-Your-Butt Falls from when swimming was permitted). Do not trespass on private property.

Getting Started

From the intersection of US 64 and NC 281 is Sapphire, NC follow NC 281 south for 0.9 miles and turn left on Grassy Ridge Road. Follow Grassy Ridge Road 1.1 miles to the Gorges State Park Visitors Center.

Taking Children

This hike is suitable for well-supervised children. Note that Rainbow Falls claims lives annually due to failure to take proper precautions. DO NOT allow children (or adults) to enter the water above the falls. The river at this location is deceptively shallow with a slippery bottom and strong current, making it easy for people to get swept over the falls. While swimming is popular at Turtleback Falls the same precaution applies.



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Public Tracks

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Frank Erk 5 months, 3 weeks ago
Rainbow Falls 5/2/19 10:52:36 AM
Hiking at Gorges State Park to Rainbow Falls. Great weather but wind and mist in your face from viewing area across from the falls. Rainbow seen in 1 photo;-)
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Jason G. 3 years, 1 month ago
Rainbow Falls Trail Pisgah National Forest,NC
ONEWAY Trail(Out & Back) 3.5m.Total(Moderate Rough) Area-Gorges State Park, NC Views-Waterfall, River Highest Elevation-2920ft
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sameckstroth 5 years, 4 months ago
Track (6/7/14, 8:31:43AM)
Rainbow Falls. Gorges State Park
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