Were it not listed on the official USGS topo map (and therefore also on nearly every other map published since), Dutch Creek Falls would be mostly unknown except to the lucky few who live nearby. As it is, however, it is among the more well known waterfalls in the region. The only problem is that you can’t see it.
Dutch Creek Falls is on private property, and while it is very close to a public road (you can see the brink from the road), there is no way to view it legally without permission. For those who might be tempted to slip in unnoticed, you should know that a house sits on the brink and one at the base.
The waterfall is listed at 80 feet and 90 feet high in various publications. I have a hard time believing it is more than 60 feet. What is not debatable is its beauty. I’d rank it among the more scenic waterfalls of the Boone and Blowing Rock region.
Although I assume the waterfall has always been private, it has not always been out of the public eye. Early tourists in Valle Crucis visited the waterfall and it was a common subject on postcards of the era. The 1938 book The Scenic Resources of the Tennessee Valley featured Dutch Creek Falls with a full-page photo. Margaret Morely, in her 1913 book The Carolina Mountains, describes how early travelers went out of their way to see the falls. “From Valle Crucis to Banner Elk, under Beech Mountain, is another day’s walk, when again you take the longest way, up Dutch Creek to see the pretty waterfall there…” Morely says the route from the falls follows Dutch Creek upstream and to Hanging Rock, the prominent promontory seen from various viewpoints in the surrounding valleys. I’m not aware of a public access to Hanging Rock, although some of the property on its lower slopes is now part of Grandfather Mountain State Park.