Fall Branch Falls


The Benton MacKaye Trail rises from Stanley Creek Road to these beautiful falls with a viewing deck just a few feet from the trail. This relatively short hike to this tall, normally full fall offers a wide trail and easy-to-moderate leg stretch, good preparation for a hike up Rocky Mountain or one of the other nearby trails.

These falls, along the Benton MacKaye Trail west of Aska Road, are shorter, although a bit harder, walk than Long Creek Falls. Turning off Stanley Creek Road just past the bridge over Falls Branch, there is a small parking area. As you enter the parking area, note the old road on the left. This road used to be a major road at one point; the banked turn 30 feet from the trail gives a hint to that.

At this point, the Benton MacKaye Trail begins the ascent up Rocky Mountain. The path to Falls Branch bears off to the right after .25 miles (it may seem like slightly more). If you come to the first switchback on the Benton MacKaye, you have passed the side trail. You can identify this by the well-worn path. From the wide Benton MacKaye Trail, the narrow path leads to a deck that allows a good view of this cascading waterfall. The upper portion of Fall Branch Falls is a series of cascades that lead to a single major drop of some 30 feet, with the water plunging into a deep pool at the base of the falls. The area is also full of wildlife. After visiting the falls, you can continue on the Benton MacKaye Trail for another 2 miles (total elevation climb of 1400 feet) for some excellent views from Rocky Mountain. (The trail actually climbs to the top of the mountain, and the climb is well-done and gradual.)

Directions to the falls:

  • From Blue Ridge, take Aska Road south 8 miles
  • Turn right on Stanley Creek Road )across from Toccoa Riverside Restaurant)
  • Go 3.1 miles to the parking lot on the right just past the bridge over Falls Branch
  • Trailhead is on the right