Accessibility – Moderate
Height – 35′ over three tiers
Distance – 0.4 out and back
Beauty – 6
Photo rating – 7
Solitude – 6
GPS Info: LAT 35.0080 LONG -83.3288
Last Updated – 08-27-2018
Upper Middle Creek Falls is a 35 foot high three-tiered waterfall located off NC106 about a tenth of a mile before the parking area for Highlands Aerial Park on the right. The trailhead is on NC106 very close to a School Bus Sign. The trailhead parking is 9.25 miles from the intersection of US64 and NC106 is Highlands on the right side of the road. There is room to park on the shoulder at the trailhead.
The trail enters the woods at a National Forest Boundary sign and descends from the road on a moderate grade while paralleling a white fence. After passing a gate in the fence the trail splits. The right branch leads upstream to Upper Middle Creek Falls while the left branch heads downstream toward a wicked adventure getting to Middle Creek Falls. Follow the graded and mulched trail to the right to a set of wooden steps. The trail will swing upstream and after a modest ascent you will be standing on a overlook. Poised about 12 feet above the river the entirety of the falls is spread before you, offering a great photo subject.
This one is certainly kid friendly even though the descent from the road is a little steep. If you want you can climb down off the bank for a closer look but the view is so nice from the overlook I didn’t see a reason.