Pets allowed
Elevation Gain
200.00 ft (60.96 m)
Trail type
1.60 mi (2.57 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

Linville Falls is an iconic waterfall that drops 90 feet into the Linville Gorge. Overlooks at the top of the falls and from across the gorge provide unique vantages of the twisting mini-gorge immediately above the falls and the falls itself.

From the trailhead at the Linville Falls Visitor Center, cross the bridge on the right over the Linville River. The trail is moderate, with one steeper grade near the middle. In 0.3 miles you'll reach a trail intersection with a trail to the left toward the Upper Falls Overlook. This leads to a viewing area of the 15-foot Upper Falls and sharply zigzagging slides and ledges leading to the lip of Linville Falls. The bedrock here is remarkable.

Returning to the trail intersection, the trail toward Chimney View, the Gorge View, and Erwin's View will be to the left. This trail is mostly flat with the steepest portion coming just after an open meadow. During the climb you will be surrounded by eastern hemlocks, white pine, and the occasional Carolina hemlock. Roughly half a mile down the trail the Chimney View will be to the left. It offers a view of Linville Falls and the plunge pool below from nearly directly across the gorge. Chimney View gets its name from the two tall pillars of rock that start just off the base of the near side of the gorge.

The Gorge View is next, roughly 0.1 miles further down the trail. Here you will be able to see into the Linville Gorge Wilderness Area downstream of the falls.

Only a few hundred feet back down the trail, a turn to the right leads to Erwin's View, the viewpoint that offers the most comprehensive vista of the gorge and falls. It's possible to see the Upper Falls from here as well.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass

Not Required


Great views. Well maintained trails.


Can be crowded.

Trailhead Elevation

3,160.00 ft (963.17 m)


Big vistas
Old-growth forest



Have updates, photos, alerts, or just want to leave a comment?
Sign In and share them.