Dry Falls

Nantahala National Forest / Macon County, North Carolina, USA

Rating: 2.5     Difficulty: 1
Dry Falls


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Dry Falls (like the nearby Bridal Veil Falls) was another roadside waterfall. But instead of driving behind the waterfall, this one lets you go behind it the old fashioned way - by walking!

A short and well-developed walking path from the car park led down some stairs towards the backside of the falls. The wide path continued a little beyond the falls from the other side before reaching a dead-end. So given the infrastructure invested in this falls (apparently it recently re-opened just a month prior to our arrival), it wasn't surprising to see this place full of people.

This 65ft waterfall exhibited pretty forceful flow during our visit so getting behind something like this certainly caused us to get a little wet from the mist, but it also allowed us to appreciate its power at close range.

We came here in the middle of an Autumn afternoon so we were treated to gorgeous Autumn colors around the waterfall. However, when viewed from its front, the sun was right against us. So that might be a consideration if you're concerned about photographs.

To give you an idea of how easy this excursion was, we spent about a half-hour here encompassing the walking and all the picture-taking.

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Pretty Fall colors from behind Dry FallsPretty Fall colors from behind Dry Falls
Looking down at Dry Falls from an overlook by the car parkLooking down at Dry Falls from an overlook by the car park
The busy car parkThe busy car park

Going down steps as we approached the fallsGoing down steps as we approached the falls

Getting closer to the fallsGetting closer to the falls

Another look from behind the fallsAnother look from behind the falls

Context of the falls from the upper overlookContext of the falls from the upper overlook

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Right to left sweep following the stream before ending at the falls

Left to right sweep from directly behind the falls showing the trail on both sides

L-shaped sweep from the far side of the trail that went behind the falls itself

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Highlands was the nearest town to this waterfall so we'll describe the driving directions from there. So from the Hwy 64/106 junction (where Main St turns into Franklin Rd) in the town of Highlands, we continued northwest (towards the town of Franklin) on Hwy 64 for about 3.2 miles. The signed car park was on the left. This waterfall was only 0.8 miles west of Bridal Veil Falls.

We do have to warn you that it can get quite busy here so there's a chance the car park can get full. During our visit, we had to wait a few minutes before someone finally pulled out so we could park. I don't think there's any other options for parking outside of this lot.

Finally, for some context, Highlands was about 38 miles (roughly an hour drive) west of Brevard on Hwy 64. Brevard was 35 miles (under an hour drive) south of Asheville, 47 miles (90 minutes drive) northwest of Greenville, South Carolina, and 126 miles (2.5 hours drive) west of Charlotte.

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For more information about our itineraries involving this waterfall, check out the following links.

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For more information about our experiences with this waterfall, check out the following travel stories.

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