Grassy Creek Falls is a beautiful waterfall hidden inside the DuPont State Forest.
Located almost in the center of DuPont State Forest in Western North Carolina is the long cascade of a waterfall – Grassy Creek Falls. The DuPont State Forest is a 10,000+ acre multi-use hotspot of beautiful trails, waterfalls, and lakes with breathtaking views of a priceless North Carolina forest. There is so much to see and do inside the forest but the day hike to Grassy Creek Falls in an easy walk that should be on your list of places to visit inside the forest.
Grassy Creek Falls can be easily reached from multiple parking areas. However, the Lake Imaging Parking area along Staton Road in Cedar Mountain North Carolina will provide the quickest and most direct path to the falls. The drive to the parking lot is very pleasant along easily traveled Carolina country roads. There is plenty of signage along the way and the 25 minute drive from downtown Hendersonville is effortless. Driving time from Asheville North Carolina or Greenville South Carolina is about 1 hour.
DuPont State Forest is a very popular spot and can be crowded at times. However there is plenty of parking and the Lake Imaging Parking area has limited restroom facilities via a porta-potty. There are better facilities, if you need them, at the High Falls parking lot which is another 1.5 miles down Staton Road. Like all of the trails in the DuPont State Forest, the trail from Lake Imaging is very wide and nicely maintained. The round trip total for the hike to Grassy Creek Falls is about 4.7 miles.
The hike starts out on the Lake Imaging Road trail which starts in the corner near the entrance to the parking area. This is a multi-use trail so watch for mountain bikers and people on horseback. After a short hike on the Lake Imaging Road trail, you will encounter Lake Imaging which is a small but beautiful lake containing a short dock and two covered picnic areas. You could easily make Lake Imaging your destination and relax by the lake if you wanted to, but Grassy Creek Falls is the destination on this episode so continue on the trail when you are ready.
You will hike for about 1 mile on the Lake Imaging Road Trail making a modest but somewhat steady elevation gain. Continue on the Lake Imaging Road Trail as you reach signs indicating the Hilltop and Locust Trails but watch for the turnoff on the right to the Grassy Creek Falls trail which is about 3/10’s of a mile further.
About 2/10’s of a mile on the Grassy Creek Falls Trail will put you right at the top of the long and beautiful cascade of Grassy Creek Falls. The viewing area for Grassy Creek Falls isn’t huge but it is sufficient as this isn’t as popular as some of the other falls inside the forest. This is a great destination for small children but you are literally right at the top of the falls and the area is unprotected. So take care and keep your little ones safe.
When you are finished viewing the falls, hike back the trail in reverse to return to the parking lot. You could also go left on the Hilltop Trail from the Grassy Creek Falls Trail in you want a little different scenery part of the way back. This will add approximately 8/10’s of a mile to your return trip and will return to you to the Lake Imaging Road Trail by where Locust Trail intersected the trail. If you take the Hilltop trail, turn left when you reach the Lake Imaging Road Trail to return to the parking lot.