I visited Setrock Creek Falls recently, on the same deary day that I visited Roaring Fork Falls. These 2 waterfalls are usually always visited together as they are both off the same turnoff from NC Hwy 80. While Setrock Creek Falls is considerably higher at 75 feet than Roaring Fork Falls, which sits around 40 feet, I still consider Roaring Fork Falls to be the main attraction here, due to water flow. The picture above was taken in an ideal situation, on a cloudy, foggy day with a good deal of recent rain. A hike during drier times could leave viewers disappointed.
To get here, find your way to the intersection of NC Hwy 80, passing under the Blue Ridge Parkway. You will be in the vicinity of Mount Mitchell, accessed via NC 128 about 15 miles south on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Head north on Hwy 80 2-3 miles. Look for a left turn on South Toe River Rd. (If you see the Mount Mitchell Golf Course and Clubhouse on NC 80, you will have gone too far). Roaring Fork Falls turnoff will be an immediate left. I highly recommend taking this 1/2 mile hike to a very scenic, yet unique waterfall. Otherwise, stay on South Toe River Rd for several miles. It starts out paved, then turns to gravel, but is well maintained. Pass by many views of the golf course, homesites, and rental homesites, and the road gradually heads deep into the forest. The South Toe River will be running along the passenger side. Expect some up close, scenic views of this pretty river. The road soon makes a sharp turn to the right, almost appearing to head back the other way. Take this, it will round out and bring you out at a small parking area with a big info board for the Pisgah National Forest.
There will be several trails heading out into the forest here including the Mountains To Sea. I have yet to venture on these to see where they go, but hey….it’s more trails to hike! To get to Setrock Creek Falls, head up the road a tad more, the cross the South Toe River on a bridge into the Black Mountains Campground. This is a large campground, look for the office to be on the right once you cross the bridge.
Most people visit the top of Mt Mitchell by driving to the top with only a short paved trail to arrive at the summit. If you are one that would get a better feeling by doing it this way, here is a detailed trip report from Zach’s Mild Adventures…Mt Mitchell.
Just past the Mt Mitchell trailhead, is another trailhead for Setrock Creek Falls.