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South River Falls Trail

 5.0 (2)

Length


1.6 Miles 2.6 Kilometers


73' 22 m

Ascent

-837' -255 m

Descent

11%

Avg Grade (6°)

23%

Max Grade (13°)

2,948' 899 m

High

2,114' 644 m

Low

Shared By Larry W. Brown

Conditions


All Clear 98 days ago
Mostly Dry History

Getting forecast...

A steep trail leading to an overlook of South River Falls.

Larry W. Brown

Dogs Leashed

Features Birding · Fall Colors · River/Creek · Views · Waterfall · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Family Friendly Though steep, the shortness of this trail makes it great for kids, especially as they'll be able to see a waterfall at the end.

Description

This trail heads past the drinking fountain at the South River picnic area. The trail begins by descending across the white-blazed Appalachian Trail (AT) and continues downhill along a straight, drawn-out stretch. The trail bends to the left, drops along several switchbacks, and then straightens out as the South River merges from the right (south).

Head across the tributary stream, which can be hard to spot in places, but can be heard fairly clearly. After around a third of a mile, the trail will cross another stream. Here, the edge of the falls should start to come into view as the trees thin out, revealing views of the park beyond.

Follow the trail for another hundred yards or so, and you'll arrive at a path on the right. This path dives very steeply toward the head of the falls and provides a number of slipping hazards to avoid. Stay straight on the South River Falls Trail as it leads to an observation point down on the right, toward the falls. Look for the ledge surrounded by a constructed guard wall.

From here, you'll find the best views of the falls, out toward the gorge, and the northeast ridge of Saddleback Mountain beyond. The trail continues down where it ends at the South River Falls Road.

Thanks to Larry W. Brown, for sharing this description. If you’re interested in learning more details about great hikes, weather, camping / lodging, wildlife, and scenic drives, check out the comprehensive Guide to Shenandoah National Park.

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Your Check-Ins

Check-Ins

Apr 14, 2018
Hope Riale
Beautiful hike. For beginners the way back was a little tougher because it's all up hill. Well worth it because the waterfall was stunning. 3mi — 4h 30m
Feb 17, 2017
Eric Konecny
Jul 27, 2016
Sarah King
11 times
Jul 3, 2016
Alejandro Lastra

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Trail Ratings

  5.0 from 2 votes

#657

Overall
  5.0 from 2 votes
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Rankings

#19

in Virginia

#657

Overall
13 Views Last Month
263 Since Apr 19, 2016
Intermediate Intermediate

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