Upper Cedar Rock Falls is a really beautiful 20′ tall waterfall that is accessible via an easy-moderate 2 mile roundtrip hike.  

Location: Pisgah National Forest, Ranger District near Brevard NC
Roundtrip Distance: 2 Miles
Difficulty: Moderate
Handicap Accessible: No
Dog Friendly: Yes
Features: Waterfall, bridges, forest
Directions: From The Blue Ridge Parkway, take Highway 27 towards Brevard. After passing Looking Glass Falls, watch for FR475 on the right, and turn right onto FR475 (sharp turn). Watch for signs for the Pisgah Center for Wildlife Education, and turn left into the center. Park in front of the center.
Recommended Gear:Standard Day Hiking Gear

Upper Cedar Rock Falls NC

Upper Cedar Rock Falls, in the Ranger District of Pisgah National Forest is one of four waterfalls that can be access via the Cat Gap Loop trail, which begins at the Pisgah Center for Wildlife Education.  Upper Cedar Rock Falls is the second of these four falls, and is a 2.0 mile roundtrip hike.

The Trail to Upper Cedar Rock Falls 

To reach Upper Cedar Rock Falls, follow the trail instructions to Cedar Rock Falls.  Cedar Rock Falls and Upper Cedar Rock Falls are very close together, and while in the area you should see both.

After visiting Cedar Rock Falls, at the top of the spur trail to Cedar Rock Falls, go left.  Just a little ways past the trail, you’ll see a primitive campsite down the hill and to your left.  Head down to this campsite to find Upper Cedar Rock Falls. 

This descent is easy, and only about a 10-15 foot hill.  Not near as steep and long as the spur trail down to Cedar Creek Falls

Upper Cedar Rock Falls

Upper Cedar Rock Falls

Cedar Rock is only about 10 foot tall, but it’s a pretty waterfall, with a nice smooth pool at the base, and it is surrounded by Mountain Laurel, as you can see in the photo above.  The falls is really more of a slide than a waterfall.   

The wading pool is nice, and a great place to let kids enjoy the cool, clean and crisp water.   Just be careful of the rocks, they can be a little slick.  Looking Glass Rock is also viewable from this campsite, if you look away from the waterfall in the opposite direction, and up.  The combination of the falls, and the view of Looking Glass Rock, make this an excellent campsite.

After viewing Upper Cedar Falls, you can return back the way you came to get back to the Pisgah Center for Wildlife Education.  

If you’re still up for another 1 mile hike, you can hike from here up to Grogan Creek Falls, the 4th waterfall on this hike.  You’ll pass the third, and unnamed falls, on the way to Grogan Creek Falls.

>> See our guide for more than 30 other waterfalls

Upper Cedar Rock Falls Photo Gallery

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Upper Cedar Rock Falls Video

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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