The Rufus Morgan Falls trail is really special. You have to visit this area! We found this trail on All Trails and it was a super surprise. Not only was there a beautiful 70′ waterfall, turns out there were three waterfalls and so many wildflowers that we could hardly keep pace with Wessy on the short-just-over-a-mile hike. According to Kevin Adams’ NC Waterfalls guide book, the area is loaded with spring wildflowers in mid to late April, but we still saw plenty in May!
The trail begins with a slight up hill climb then splits at the double blue blazes on a tree. We went to the right and I’m so glad we did because the flowers were just gorgeous on this part of the trail.
Wessy loved the six (plus) water crossings.
The hike is family friendly and moderate in difficulty. The main waterfall is at the half way point of this trail that loops, so the hike can either be done as a loop or an out and back. You could combine this hike with Big Laurel Falls and Mooney Falls in the Standing Indian area and have a really nice half to full day of “water falling.”
I was amazed at these ferns and wanted to do a little something special with the photo.
At just over 0.4 miles, you’ll come to a nice waterfall, which is on Left Prong Rough Fork. It has some downfall on it, but it was nice because of recent rains.
The upper section of the same water fall. We loved all of the water and all the green.
Wessy was in the water at each crossing. I just let her play. The water was running fast and the water was so clear.
So grateful for good friends to hike with. We don’t have to go far to have a great time! In this case, the hike was short but we all said it was one of the prettiest we had done. It was nature overload! Some bloggers wrote that the water crossings were dangerous, but we just went right over them. The area in the above photo was probably the toughest.
Here’s your payoff: Rufus Morgan Falls. The trail to the falls is a little steep but we made it without any trouble and that was with a very eager Boykin Spaniel. This is one of the prettiest places I have been in a long time. I was able to place my camera on a boulder at the base of the falls and with a super wide angle get this long-exposure shot.
We even hiked over a little bit of rock shelving.
I have no idea what these plants are—the one above or the one below. I just know this area was one of a kind! Wonderful trail. If you have read this far on my blog, be sure to follow the directions below and check it out yourself.
Directions: This waterfall is near Wayah Bald fire tower. From the intersection of US64 and US441/23 in Franklin, drive west on 64 for 3.8 miles and turn right on Old Murphy Rd. Drive another 0.2 miles on Old Murphy Rd and turn left on Wayah Rd (SR1310).
Continue for 6.3 miles on Wayah Rd and turn left on the gravel FR388. If you are coming from the Robbinsville area, drive east on Wayah Rd for 21.9 miles and turn right on to FR388. Then drive 2 miles on FR388 to the obvious parking area on the right. This forest road is open seasonal and usually is closed from January 1 – March 15 depending on conditions.