DuPont State Forest NC Waterfalls & Hiking Guides

DuPont State Forest: Waterfalls, Hikes & More

DuPont State Recreational Forest is an outdoors-lover's dream with many waterfalls and 86 miles of trails on protected 10,000 acres. Located between Brevard and Hendersonville, it's an easy 40-mile drive from Asheville. Most visitors flock to the three-mile roundtrip hike to three waterfalls (Hooker, Triple and High Falls), but there's so much more to explore! Take a variety of waterfall and lake hikes, or trek to the top of Cedar Rock or Stone Mountain for mountain views. It's also one of North Carolina's best mountain biking and horseback riding areas.

For more solitude and to avoid the weekend crowds, arrive early and visit on weekdays. Take a breakfast for an early morning picnic on the rocks at Triple Falls. DuPont is open everyday 5 AM until 10 PM. Admission is free. The Visitor Center and restrooms are located at the High Falls parking area. About a mile away on the same road is the Hooker Falls parking area. There are four additional access areas with parking. Find plenty of spots for picnics, but no beverages or food are available to purchase. It's pet-friendly, but keep dogs on a leash.

DuPont State Forest Top Things To Do

DuPont Forest Waterfall Hike
3-Mile Waterfall Hike, DuPont State Forest
(3 miles, moderate) Our most popular waterfall hike takes you to Hooker, Triple and High Falls in DuPont State Recreational Forest. Take a picnic! Since it's so beautiful, expect big crowds on nice weekends.
DuPont Forest Waterfalls
7-Mile Waterfalls Hike, DuPont State Forest
(7 miles roundtrip, strenuous) See three waterfalls on this hike in DuPont State Forest: High Falls, Triple Falls and Bridal Veil Falls. Or you can mountain bike most of it on old logging roads. Extend the hike about 1.5 miles to see Hooker Falls, too!
High Falls at DuPont State Forest
High Falls, DuPont State Forest
This 150-ft. waterfall is in the middle of an amazing 10,000-acre nature sanctuary. One of the most powerful waterfalls in the North Carolina mountains, High Falls is an easy hike from the parking area (1.2 miles roundtrip) and you can walk or bike to see additional waterfalls nearby.
Triple Falls at DuPont State Forest
Triple Falls, DuPont State Forest
This unique three-tier waterfall offers a chance to safely get a close-up view in the middle of three cascades (great picnic spot!). It's only a one-mile roundtrip hike - and a half mile from High Falls and Hooker Falls.
Hooker Falls at DuPont State Forest
Hooker Falls, DuPont State Forest
Located near Triple Falls, it is an easy 1/2-mile roundtrip stroll from the parking area. While it's only 12 ft. tall, it's wide and cascades into a beautiful pool that is a popular swimming spot.
Bridal Veil Falls at DuPont State Forest
Bridal Veil Falls, DuPont State Forest
(4.4 miles roundtrip hike, moderate) This beautiful waterfall can be enjoyed from many angles. You can even walk behind the top section! Take a picnic since there are many spots by the waterfall to relax and enjoy the view. You can also mountain bike to it.
DuPont Forest Cedar Rock Mountain
Cedar Rock Mountain, DuPont Forest
(4.5 miles loop, moderate) This hike provides wonderful views and dramatic scenery - and it's not difficult. Rising only a few hundred feet above the surrounding plateau, walk across areas of granite with great views.
Dupont Forest Lake Hike
DuPont State Forest Hidden Lakes
(4 miles, moderate) Discover some hidden lakes on the quieter side of DuPont State Recreational Forest, as well as an airstrip with a great mountain view. Fawn Lake and Lake Julia are great swimming holes, too.
Wintergreen Falls in DuPont State Forest
Wintergreen Falls, DuPont State Forest
(3 miles roundtrip, easy) This 20-ft. waterfall is tucked away in the beautiful setting of DuPont Forest. The hiking trail is gentle - you can also mountain bike or horseback ride.
DuPont Forest Stone Mountain
Stone Mountain, DuPont State Forest
(2.4 miles roundtrip, moderate) A mostly wooded hike with a gradual climb takes you to the top of a rock face with great views across DuPont State Recreational Forest.
Waterfall Tours
Tumblestone Waterfall Tours
Get picked up at your accommodation in the Asheville area for a guided, half-day waterfall excursion that will take you to three impressive waterfalls in two protected forests. Plus, ride on a very scenic portion of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Licensed & Insured. 

Covered Bridge
Crossing the river above High Falls is a beautiful covered bridge that was built in 2000 for a planned, exclusive real estate development. Thankfully, the state bought the land (after a long legal battle) from the developer so it could be preserved. Read the full history of saving Dupont Forest.

Movie Location
The Hunger Games, the major motion picture released in 2012, was filmed at various locations at DuPont State Forest, including Hooker Falls and Triple Falls. Read about The Hunger Games film locations.

Trails Map
Download a PDF of the DuPont Forest Trails Map.

Mountain Biking
DuPont State Forest is fast becoming one of the leading mountain bike destinations in Western North Carolina with 80 miles of trails open to both equestrians and mountain bikers. DuPont offers everything from gentle forest roads to exciting single tracks, with an impressive variety of scenic attractions located only minutes apart. Bike to waterfalls or go to the quieter side at Guion Farm Access. Download their Mountain Bike Guide. Also see our Mountain Biking Guide.

Horseback Riding
DuPont's trails are used by hikers, bikers, horseback riders, fishermen and hunters (during season). Read more about horseback riding here and elsewhere in the area.

Accessibility to Waterfalls
Visitors with disabilities can obtain an automobile permit that allows them to enter the gate at the High Falls access area on Staton Road and drive to High Falls, Triple Falls and the covered bridge. Passes are limited, and you need to put in your request 48 hours in advance. From June through October, permits are granted for Monday-Friday to enter at 11 AM, 12 noon or 2 PM. During the remaining months, they are available seven days a week. Call the Forest Supervisor’s office at (828) 877-6527, extension 242. The trail to Hooker Falls is wheelchair accessible. Twice a year, ride shuttles to the waterfalls with Tour de Falls.

DuPont State Forest Directions
Directions from Asheville (via Brevard) to two parking areas: I-26 East to exit 40 for Highway 280/Airport exit toward Brevard. Turn right onto 280 and drive about 16 miles. Turn left on U.S. 64 as you enter Brevard past Wal-Mart. Travel east on U.S. 64 for 3.7 miles to the gas station in Penrose. Turn right on Crab Creek Rd and continue 4.3 miles and turn right on DuPont Rd. After 3.1 miles, find the Hooker Falls parking area on the right just before the Little River Bridge. One mile past this parking area is the larger High Falls parking area with restrooms, visitor center and water. (Street address: 89 Buck Forest Road, Cedar Mountain, NC 28718)

Directions from Hendersonville: Take Business US-25 (Church St.) south to Kanuga and turn right. Kanuga becomes Crab Creek Rd. after 3.9 miles at Little River Rd. (flashing traffic light). Continue on Crab Creek Rd. 7.1 miles to DuPont Rd. Turn left for 3.1 miles.

Guion Farm Access (For Stone Mountain hike, Wintergreen Falls, horseback riding and mountain bikes): Same directions as above. After you turn right on DuPont Rd., go 7/10 of a mile and turn left on Sky Valley Road. Go past the junction of Old CCC Road to the Guion Farm Access Area 1.6 miles on the right.

Picnic Shelter Reservations
Picnic shelters inside the forest are available for group rental, and include a limited number of vehicle passes. Reservations are for the entire day (9 AM-5 PM). Call 828-877-6527.

Waterfall Safety
Although beautiful to see, waterfalls can be very dangerous. Every year, people fall to their death after a slip on wet rocks above and around waterfalls in the area. Never climb or slide on waterfalls, or swim, wade or play in the water above a waterfall within 300 feet. Climbing on rocks using your hands is prohibited. Supervise children closely and keep pets on a leash. It is easy to underestimate the slickness of rocks and the strong flow of water. Stay on the established trails and enjoy the view from the overlooks.

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