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North Carolina BRP Highlights Blue Ridge Parkway
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Developed Areas

Linville Falls

Linville Falls, Linville Gorge, Duggers Creek and Erwins View

 

   

The Linville Falls Recreation Area and visitor information center provides many activities for motorists traveling along the Parkway. This area provides picnic grounds, self-guided trails, campground, campfire talks, nature walks, trout fishing and rest rooms.  A spur road located at milepost 316.4 of the Parkway leads to the campground, visitor center and most of the hiking trails, as well as the main features of the area, Linville Falls and Linville Gorge.

The picnic area has 100 sites available with rest rooms close by.  There is the short 0.1 mile Linville River Bridge Trail available for picnickers.  The Linville Falls Campground is a popular overnight destination along the Parkway.  There is the normal $16 per night fee.  The campground is usually open by April and closes by November.  There are 50 tent sites and 20 RV sites available.

Two main hiking trails lead to beautiful views of the Linville Falls. Both begin at the Linville Falls Visitor Center and pass through remnants of a virgin hemlock forest mixed with other familiar trees such as white pine, oaks, hickory, and birch.

There is the 1.6 mile self-guided trail, called the Linville Falls Trail, to the magnificent Linville Falls. The Linville River flows innocently into a small set of upper falls and then plunges over the lower falls with a powerful force into the Linville Gorge. The river is responsible for cutting out the Linville Gorge over a long period of time.

Several overlooks extend from the self-guided trail to observe the beautiful upper and lower falls. The exquisite sound of the falls along with the natural beauty of the forest with trees up to 150 feet tall brings delight to all those who experience it.  Below is some info about each overlook along the trail.

The first overlook is often called "Balcony View" or "Upper Falls View", but is not formally named. It can be reached by traveling 0.5 mile along the Erwin's View Trail. The overlook displays a gorgeous view of the smaller, upper falls and a glimpse of the lower falls as the water flows out of sight.

The second overlook is called "Chimney View" and is the most often photographed scene of the falls.

The third overlook is named the "Gorge View Overlook" and provides a breath taking view of both the upper and lower falls. The beauty and vastness of the Linville Gorge below becomes much more apparent. The Linville River seems to just cut right through the centers of the enormous mountains.

The fourth overlook, named "Erwin's View Overlook", is the last overlook on the Linville Falls Trail. This view has the highest elevation of the four overlooks on the trail, and provides a distant, but inclusive panorama of the falls and the gorge. It is nothing short of absolutely amazing.

The trails to Linville Gorge (1.4 miles round trip) and to Plunge Basin (1 mile round trip) also start at the visitor center. The trail to Linville Gorge forks 0.2 mile from the visitor center. The right fork takes hikers to Plunge Basin Overlook where they can view the lower falls and the Chimneys. The left fork winds down through rock cliffs to the bottom of the falls where the force of the water cascading over the falls creates a large pool. Both of these trails are strenuous.

The short Dugger's Creek Loop Trail crosses the creek and loops its way back to the visitor center.  It's one trail that doesn't receive as much traffic as the other trails in the area, however it shouldn't be missed.

Dugger Creek Falls

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Linville Falls

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