Grassy Creek Falls Highly recommended waterfall for everyone!

Grassy Creek Falls

Nikon D800, Nikon 17-35mm lens at 17mm, f/11, 0.6 second, ISO 200, polarizing filter. Photographed in pouring rain.

Beauty Rating:
6
Accessibility:
Trail
River:
Grassy Creek
River Basin:
French Broad
Watershed:
Small
Elevation:
3,080 feet
Type and Height:
25-foot free fall with cascades below
Landowner:
Private
County:
Mitchell
USGS Map:
Little Switzerland
Hike Distance:
about 0.9 mile
Hike Difficulty:
5
Photo Rating:
5
Compass:
255°
Canopy:
Closed
Waterfall GPS:
Trailhead GPS:
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Driving Directions

At Milepost 333.9, turn off the Blue Ridge Parkway and follow the ramp to the stop sign. Turn right on Chestnut Grove Church Road, drive back under the parkway, and park on the right at Grassy Creek Falls Road, which is 50 feet from the parkway.

Hike Description

Walk down Grassy Creek Falls Road for about 0.3 mile to a creek crossing. Continue straight ahead for 0.25 mile to where the road makes a sharp right turn. A blue gate is at the end of the curve. Just before it, another road turns off to the right. Take that right turn to reach the falls in about 0.3 mile. You can see the falls easily from the road, but for the best view you’ll have to take the scramble path to the base.

Overview

I’m happy that I can finally give directions to Grassy Creek Falls. The public has never been turned away, but the owners haven’t publicized the waterfall. Now, a sign near the start of the road kindly invites visitors to the falls. Horses and walkers are welcome. You can show your appreciation by exercising good manners—no loud talking, no littering, no dogs off-leash, and staying on the road. And don’t drive down the road. There is no place to park and nowhere to turn around.

Grassy Creek Falls has been a popular destination forever. The old dirt road that leads to it was the original route to Little Switzerland. Years ago, a local old-timer told me that the road right-of-way still belonged to the state, even though it has been decades since you could drive it. I didn’t investigate it further and have no idea if it is true. At any rate, it doesn’t matter, as the landowners along the road don’t seem to mind that the public visits the waterfall.

Grassy Creek Falls

Nikon D800, Nikon 17-35mm lens at 24mm, f/11, 0.8 second, ISO 200, polarizing filter. Photographed in pouring rain.

Winter view

Nikon D800, Nikon 17-35mm lens at 17mm, f/16, 1/8 second, ISO 200, polarizing filter.

Grassy Creek Falls

Nikon D800, Nikon 17-35mm lens at 25mm, f/20, 1/6 second, ISO 100, polarizing filter.

Grassy Creek Falls

Nikon D800, Nikon 17-35mm lens at 17mm, f/8, 0.3 second, ISO 400, polarizing filter. Photographed in pouring rain.

Grassy Creek Falls

Nikon D800, Nikon 17-35mm lens at 17mm, f/11, 0.3 second, ISO 400, polarizing filter. Photographed in pouring rain.

Nearby Waterfalls

  •   Emerald Village Falls