Just off of the iconic Blue Ridge Parkway in western North Carolina, lies the dramatic Linville Falls. Here the Linville River tumbles down a series of epic gorges and crevices. These falls are surrounded by a rugged landscape of forests and cliffs. If you and your adventurous pal want some great vantage points of these waterfalls, take a hike along the Linville Falls Trail! The hike offers different lookout points, with views of the upper falls, lower falls, and the surrounding gorge. The hike may be short, but the views are gigantic!
The hike starts at the Linville Falls Visitors Center, where you can find parking, drinking fountains, restrooms and maps. From here the trail crosses a bridge over the Linville River and winds through a dense forest, featuring golden leaves in the fall and wildflowers in the spring. The trail is easy leading to the first overlook, where the river gently flows over the upper falls. From here to reach the dramatic Chimney View, the trail is quite steep and strenuous. The effort is worth it though, from this high elevation you can see both falls, and the namesake chimney-like rock outcroppings. The next stops are the Gorge View Overlook and the Erwins View Overlook. From these lookout points you can enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding wilderness and the Linville Gorge.
Leashed dogs are welcome to enjoy the sights and sounds of the falls along with their humans. Be sure to bring along your own waste bags so your pup only leaves paw prints on the trail, and pack out what you pack in. There is drinking water available, but you may want to bring along a water bottle or bowl so your doggo can have a share. If you want to go on a real adventure with your canine companion, the Linville Falls Trail is a great option. This easily accessible trail has unforgettable views, and is sure to get your dog’s tail wagging!