The Bold And The Beautiful Mooney Falls

(Trails Illustrated Map, National Geographic)

(Trails Illustrated Map, National Geographic)

You want waterfalls? Have we got waterfalls! They’re everywhere around the Nantahala Mountains. Little ones. Big ones. And some grand ones too.

You can easily see several waterfalls along the Mountain Waters Scenic Byway, which is great for sightseeing, but, for the more adventurous souls, there are many more waterfalls to see off the beaten path.

So if you want to avoid the tourists, the crowds and the congestion, you’ll want to get out of your car and head off into the woods.

Trailhead

Trailhead

Take Mooney Falls, for example; it’s big, bold and dramatic. It’s situated only two tenths of a mile off Forest Service Road 67 in Standing Indian. It’s a very short walk – with long, gentle switchbacks – and there’s hardly ever anyone there.

Upper Mooney Falls

Upper Mooney Falls

Lower Mooney Falls

Lower Mooney Falls

This might have something to do with its remote location. Mooney Falls is about 6 miles past the Backcountry Info Center on a scenic, basically one lane gravel road. It’s not like people are just passing by on their way to somewhere else.

Most tourists won’t venture this far off the main road unless they’re interested in hiking, which makes it perfect for enjoying the beauty and solitude of this spectacular waterfall.

You’ll never have to compete for prime photo ops at Mooney Falls. It’s about as far off the beaten path as you can get. In fact, I’ve always had it to myself whenever I’ve visited.

Check it out yourself sometime. Oh! And let me know if you do. I’d love to hear what you think.

See ya’ on the trail,
Tastelikchickn

Trail at a glance
Mileage: .2 mile (one way)
Elevation change: about 200 ft
Water sources: Fill up before you go
Trailhead: 5.4 miles past the Backcountry Info Center at Standing Indian

Leave a Reply