399 – Yellow Creek Falls

Accessibility – Easy+

Height – 30′

Distance – 0.8 miles (out and back)

Beauty – 5

Photo rating – 7

Solitude – 5

GPS Info: LAT 35.41940 LONG -83.88588

Last Updated – 01-08-2019


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Yellow Creek Falls is a 30 foot high waterfall about ten miles from the middle of Robbinsville NC. The hike is short and family friendly a nice portion of the drive borders the scenic Cheoah River. On my visit in late December of 2018 the water was at flood stage so there was no exploring closer to the falls. It was scarier enough getting out on the huge boulder downstream with the creek raging past. Due to the ease of access and the scenic locale, consider yourself lucky if you have this one to yourself as I did.

To get to the trailhead from the center of Robbinsville, (Intersection of SC443 and US129) take US129 North for just shy of 10 miles to the parking area on the right. There is a kiosk and parking for half a dozen cars. As long as your paying attention and not admiring the Cheoah River it is very easy to spot. The parking area is roughly 4 miles before the pull-off for Bear Creek Falls so if you’re coming from the opposite direction (South on US129) the pull out is 4.0 miles from the Nantahala Sign.

The trailhead leaves from the parking area and enters the mostly open woods. There are several huge boulders on the right and a scenic cascade as the trail begins to ascend. The grade is moderate and never strays from the crook. The property to the uphill side of the trail is signed as private so stay on the trail. After the trail bends to the right to follow the creek, start looking for a path down toward the rock. There is a junction but I didn’t bother with the route closer to the falls since there was no way to get down to the base with the water so high. The boulder extends into the creek and gives a nice view of the falls.

I didn’t find the falls terribly appealing on my visit due to the volume of water but I’m sure that in a more modest flow, this is a very nice waterfall. With lots of exploring left to do in the Robbinsville area, I expect a return trip for comparison’s sake.

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Flood stage on Yellow Creek – December 2018
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Too much water to see any detail – December 2018

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