Best Hiking Trails Near Maggie Valley NC

Alright, hikers! Maggie Valley NC isn't just a cute and historic mountain town, Maggie Valley is a launching pad for epic outdoor adventures. This guide is your cheat sheet to the very best hiking trails near Maggie Valley NC, all perfect for weekend warriors and chill nature lovers alike. 

We're Maggie Valley NC locals and avid hikers, and this guide highlights all of our personal favorites.

Hiking Trails Near Maggie Valley NC

Hiking Trails Near Maggie Valley NC - Waterrock Knob

There are many things to do in and around Maggie Valley NC, but many don't realize that Maggie Valley offers central access to many of the best hiking trails in the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Hiking trails near Maggie Valley NC provide scenic views, creek-side hikes, waterfall destinations, and many historic insights into the way mountain settlers lived, over a 100 years ago.

No matter what type of hiking trail you're looking for, there is one nearby that will meet your desires.  Many are family friendly as well!

Our Top Picks for the Best Hiking Trails Near Maggie Valley NC

Maggie Valley NC isn't just a charming town - it's a gateway to a hiker's paradise. 

We've spent years exploring trails through the amazing forests, waterfalls, and stunning views here in the Blue Ridge Mountains.

This guide will be your compass, pointing you to the best hiking trails near Maggie Valley NC. We have hiked each one of these many times and often brought our kids along with us.

So, lace up those hiking boots and let's explore some fantastic hiking trails near Maggie Valley! These trails are within a 1 hour driving distance of Maggie Valley.

Alum Cave

Alum Cave Trail

Big Creek Trail – Great Smoky Mountains National ParkOur favorite trail and hike, Alum Cave Trail has it all: water, bridges, caves, and gorgeous scenic views. This is a 4.4 round-trip and moderate hike to Alum Cave, or a longer 11 mile round-trip and strenuous hike to the top of Mount LeConte.

Family hiking at Big Creek

Big Creek Trail

Located in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, this 4.5 mile round-trip hike will take you along an old Logging railroad grade, and to two different waterfalls, one a very popular swimming hole. Big Creek Trail is one of our favorite hiking trails near Maggie Valley NC.

Black Balsam Bald

Black Balsam Knob

This is a really exceptional and beautiful hike, that should definitely be on everyone's “must do” list. The Black Balsam area, in Pisgah National Forest, and off the Blue Ridge Parkway, offers some of the most spectacular scenic views in the Blue Ridge. This is a moderate and 2-5 mile round-trip hike.

Boogerman Trailhead

Boogerman Trail

If you're looking for a more challenging and rustic hike, Boogerman is it, and probably one of the best hiking trails near Maggie Valley NC.

You'll see pristine old growth forest, historic home sites and graveyards and cross creeks with no bridges. This is moderate to strenuous, and 7.4 miles round-trip.

Indian Creek Falls

Deep Creek Loop Trail

Deep Creek Loop Trail, in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, near Bryson City is a 4.6 mile round-trip hike and moderate hike that takes you to 3 different beautiful waterfalls.

Flat Creek Trail

Flat Creek Trail

Gabes Mountain Trail to Hen Wallow FallsLocated in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, this is a gorgeous 5.2 mile round-trip and moderate hike. Off the beaten path, and not heavily hiked.

Hen Wallow Falls Tall

Gabes Mountain Trail

Located in Cosby, TN this 4.4 mile round-trip hike is a family friendly, moderate, and takes you out to Hen Wallow Falls, a remote and beautiful waterfall.

Kepart Prong Mountain Laurel

Kephart Prong Trail

A very nice and historic out and back trail, featuring beautiful water crossings, creek-side hiking, and a hiking shelter. 4.2 mile round-trip and moderate

Max Patch - Appalachian Ranger District

Max Patch

Max Patch is an amazing hike that is 1.4 to 2.4 miles long and offers breathtaking 360 degree views from the top of a bald mountain. You'll get to hike along the Appalachian Trail as well.

Palmer Creek - Pretty Hollow Gap Trail

Pretty Hollow Gap Trail

Pretty Hollow Gap Trail is an 8 mile round trip out and back trail that follows alongside Palmer Creek and Pretty Hollow Creek to Pretty Hollow Gap, where the trail ends and runs into Mount Sterling Ridge Trail and Benton MacKaye Trail. The trail is creek-side for a good portion, and moderate.

Woody House Rough Fork Trail

Rough Fork Trail

2 mile round-trip and moderate trail up to the Woody House in Cataloochee Valley. Mainly flat trail, with a few bridge based creek crossings. The Woody house is beautiful and historic.

Waterrock Knob

Waterrock Knob

Waterrock Knob is a short (1 mile round-trip) but very strenuous hike from the parking lot up to the top. The views from the top are amazing and well worth it. This hike is just a few minutes from Maggie Valley NC.

Wildcat Falls NC

Wildcat Falls

Wildcat Falls is a 50-60 foot waterfall located 3/4 of a mile down Flat Laurel Creek Trail. The hike is moderate and 1.5 miles roundtrip. Very family friendly and nice.

While out hiking, be sure you have the necessary Day Hiking Essentials.  Also, there are bears in and around Maggie Valley, and while you probably won't see one, knowing the Black Bear Necessities will really help you if you encounter one.

Planning Your Maggie Valley Hike

Hikes near Maggie Valley trails cater to a range of abilities. Consider these factors when picking your hike:

  • Difficulty: The trails have designations of easy, moderate, or strenuous. Easy trails are great for families or casual walks, while moderate options give you a bit of a climb and some delightful views. If you're up for it, strenuous hikes have steeper climbs and longer distances for experienced hikers.
  • Length: Hikes can be quick or all-day adventures. Choose a distance that fits your schedule and fitness.
  • Interests: Want breathtaking views, a cool waterfall, or an epic historical journey? Check out the highlights of each trail to find the perfect match for what you like.

Before you head out, make sure your hike is safe and fun.

  • Trail Information: Pick up a map and information brochure at the Maggie Valley Chamber of Commerce or consult websites like the National Park Service or Blue Ridge Parkway for specific trail details, closures, and current conditions.
  • Safety First: Always let someone know your planned route and estimated return time. Pack all the hiking essentials. We recommend wearing sturdy hiking boots on most trails. Be aware of potential wildlife encounters and practice responsible bear safety.

Enjoy your hike!

Top Hikes in the Blue Ridge Mountains

Looking for great hikes in the Blue Ridge Mountains?  There are plenty of them!   

See our ALL of our hiking guides for hikes in the Blue Ridge Mountains. 

About the author

Larry Deane is co-owner of Blue Ridge Mountain Life. He has spent more than 20 years exploring the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains and has a deep passion for nature, history, storytelling, and adventure. Along with his wife Jenn, they combined these passions to create Blue Ridge Mountain Life, a travel guide to these stunning mountains they are fortunate to call home.

Larry has more than 20 years of experience as a writer and journalist, and has established himself as a leading voice and expert for Blue Ridge Mountains. He is also an avid hiker, photographer, and videographer. He loves sharing his mountain adventures and knowledge with more than 500,000 people per month on Blue Ridge Mountain Life.


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