072 – Lower Cascade Falls

Accessibility – Easy

Height – 35′

Distance – 0.8 miles (out and back)

Beauty – 8

Photo rating – 7

Solitude – 6

GPS Info: LAT 36.4149 LONG -80.2687

Last updated – 04/01/2017

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Like Torys Den Falls, getting to the Lower Cascade Falls requires leaving the main park area. The drive is less than ten minutes and is on the way to Torys Den. My personal recommendation is if you’re going to go to both falls, go to Torys Den first. Once you get to Lower Cascade Falls you’re going to want to stay for a while. This will likely not be the case as Torys Den Falls.

From the visitor’s center parking lot, make a right onto Hanging Rock Park Road and follow it to the main entrance. After passing through the gate, take a left on Moores Springs Road. Follow Moore’s Springs Road to Hall Road, which will be on the left. Pay attention or you will drive right past it. Follow Hall Road for 0.4 of a mile to the parking area on the right. It will likely be crowded so consider yourself warned. This waterfall is the primary hang out in warmer months owing to the large pool at the base and ample places to sit and hang out. Like some of the over-visited waterfalls in Pisgah, such as Sliding Rock and Looking Glass Falls, Lower Cascade Falls is a collection point for trash, discarded towels and wet clothing. If you get there first thing in the morning. you may have to do some tidying up before you can start shooting.

The trail is about 0.4 of a mile and finishes up on a series of boardwalks and stone steps that get you to the base. There is a large rock area directly in front of the pool that you can stand on to shoot. It really is a beautiful setting with a large cliff dominating the left side of the falls and thick woods the right. the falls is a single drop of about 35 feet along a black rockface. If there is no one here you can make your way along the right side under the trees and shoot the falls and cliff from the side. You can even wade into the pool. No matter what you so, I suggest you get here early. I did some exploring downstream and the steps below the main pool are worth a shot or two.

The upper drop – May 2016
Lower Cascade Falls – May 2016
The falls, the cliff and the pool – May 2016
Falls and the cliff from the right bank – May 2015
My chance to relax before the long drive home – May 2016
The steps – May 2016
The lower part of the steps – May 2016
A little friend I met along the way – May 2016