Local Family Adventure Experts: D.D. Bullwinkel’s
50 S. Broad Street, Brevard, NC
DuPont Waterfalls (Cedar Rock): When it comes to outdoor recreation in the Brevard area, there are few things more enticing than going to explore one of the many beautiful waterfalls found in the region. In fact, there are few places anywhere with more amazing waterfalls in close proximity than in DuPont State Recreational Forest.
One favorite excursion is the trifecta of Triple Falls, High Falls, and Hooker Falls – which can all be easily accessed in one outing on trails from the Hooker Falls parking lot. Starting out towards Triple Falls, it’s barely a mile before you’ll be graced with the views of the three tiered falls. Hike the wide trail another 3/4 mile to reach the bottom of the 150’ cascade of High Falls. Once you soak up a little spray, make the return trip back the way you came. If you want to catch some rays, take a little dip in the river, or picnic on the rocks. After you pass Triple Falls again and make it to the bottom of the hill, look for the trail that cuts back to the right following the river along the rocks. Hooker Falls is a 1/2 mile beyond the parking area following the Little River downstream. During the summer, this area is a hotspot for swimming, picnics, and fishing, so be sure and get an early start if you want to beat the crowds.
Directions from Brevard: From the intersection of Highway 64/276/280 in Pisgah Forest, take Highway 64 towards Hendersonville. Take a right on Crab Creek Road and follow to a right on DuPont Road (the road name change to Staton Road before you reach the parking lot). Park in the Hooker Falls parking lot on the right.
Sliding Rock (Pisgah National Forest): This incredible adventure is consistently ranked as one of the best swimming holes in the U.S. and, as a result, draws big crowds during summer months. We can’t blame them though, as the sloping waterfall creates a natural waterslide that is a lot of fun. Sliding Rock has a gentle slope and ends in a large, deep pool at the bottom, making a ride from the top a fun adventure that isn’t to be missed during a summer visit to the area.
Directions from Brevard: To get to the Sliding Rock recreation area travel north from the intersection of U.S. Highway 276 approximately 7.7 miles to the parking area on the left ($2 entry fee per car). Other options nearby include Moore’s Cove Falls and Looking Glass Falls, both beautiful waterfalls worth checking out when in the area.
Explore The Brevard Greenway: For those looking for a great place to walk, bike or stroll, the Brevard Greenway is a great option. This paved path traverses 5 miles between Brevard and Pisgah Forest, but once it enters the Pisgah National Forest – the most scenic part of the trail – the path changes to a crushed gravel surface. The greenway is easily accessible from several parking areas throughout town, making different mileage routes possible. For those looking for a short, scenic walk or ride, we recommend parking at Lowe’s Hardware and crossing into the Pisgah National Forest and continuing to the Davidson River Campground. Beyond the campground is the North Slope Trail, a great 5-mile loop that is a good addition if you’re feeling ambitious.
Directions from Brevard: Access the greenway at one of the following locations: the Davidson River Campground within Pisgah National Forest, Ingles grocery store or Lowe’s Hardware.
Moore Cove Falls (Pisgah National Forest): This hike is understandably one of the more popular in Pisgah. A short hike (just under 1.5 miles round trip) on a well-marked trail provides access to this 50’ waterfall. Suitable for young kids and less experienced hikers, the trail has some fun features like creeks and boulders to explore. Although the destination free-falling waterfall is pretty spectacular, the most awesome aspect of Moore Cove is the expansive dry cave that is behind the falls. The viewing platform offers a stable area of footing and perfect views of the falls and cave, while the shady cavern under the protruding rocks provides a unique experience from behind the veil of water and offers opportunities for soaking up the damp spray to cool off on a hot day.
Directions from Brevard: Take NC-280 East. Take a left onto US-276 West into the main entrance for Pisgah National Forest. Proceed on US-276 for 6.8 miles to the parking area on the right, just before the highway crosses a prominent stone bridge.
Cove Creek (Pisgah National Forest): A good mix of road bed and trail – Cove Creek is suitable for the novice hiker, yet even the avid outdoor person will enjoy the territory. If 2.5 miles round trip is too lax of a hiking journey, then be sure to sit and slide down the rock in the frigid river to up the adventure ante. The first section of the hike truly is just a road bed, but it parallels the creek with some lovely cascades surrounded by vibrant greenery. Just before you hit the first field, which can be reserved as a group camp site, you’ll cut into the actual trail (called Caney Bottom) on the left. When the field is open, it’s a perfect frisbee-throwing location. After a very short distance on the trail, turn right to cross a small creek at the intersection with Cove Creek Trail and continue straight until you reach the Cove Creek Falls trail to the right. Follow it down to the waterfall. Head back the way you came, and then at that field where you meet back with the road bed, follow the road through the field and check out the miniature “Sliding Rock” of sorts that’s on the right before returning to the parking lot.
Directions from Brevard: From the main intersection at the entrance of Pisgah Forest drive 5.2 miles north on 276 into the forest, and turn left on the paved Forest Road 475 towards the Pisgah Center for Wildlife Eduction. Drive 3.2 miles and park on the left just before the pavement ends at the one lane bridge. The gated road to begin the hike (and into the group camp area) is on the right.