It's moderate in difficulty, with some steep and narrow spots. Rufus Morgan Falls One of North Carolina’s most beautiful wildflower trails, the hike to Rufus Morgan Falls is best trekked during the second half of April. Either way leads back to the small parking area where you started. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. Safety First: The Nantahala National Forest receives high recreational use throughout the summer, and traffic along the forest roads can be heavy, especially near developed facilities. As a result, adequate rain gear and warm clothes are recommended, even during the summer. my 3 year old absolutely loved it! We recommend the Rufus Morgan Trail to the entire family, including "Fido." Rufus Morgan Loop Trail Reports no reports have been added for Rufus Morgan Loop yet, add a trail report. Have fun! Directions: From Franklin, take U. S. Highway 64 west about 3 miles. Continue on Wayah Rd. It is a 1.6 mile loop trail total with 1 mile to the gorgeous waterfalls. We usually always take family and friends on this hike when they come to visit. We only passed two other groups of hikers coming and going so doesn’t seem like a busy waterfall trail. Although the area contains abundant streams, all surface water should be treated before drinking or cooking. So keep going. May and October are the best mo Drive 2.0 miles to the parking area. Rufus Morgan Trail is situated southwest of Wayah Depot, close to Left Prong Rough Fork. My boyfriend and I did this on our way back from Wayah Bald, and we were definitely glad we made the trek! Turn right at the signs for the LBJ Job Center/Wayah Bald areas, then left onto Wayah Road (State Route 1310). Rufus Morgan Falls Trail. The loop trail itself is only 1 mile long. There are some steep and narrow spots, but overall it's a moderate trek. Over the weekend, we got out of town to head to the mountains. The easy one-mile loop is well-marked and well-maintained, meandering through a mature hardwood forest and crossing a babbling stream via foot bridge. One end starts across the creek from the parking area, and the other end starts in the parking area itself. Description: A gentle, 1.0 mile loop trail takes visitors through a mature cove forest with nice displays of spring wildflowers, and a small waterfall reached by a short side trail. We stopped to take it all in quite a bit so, it took us about an hour and a half. At the top of the trail are the Rufus Morgan Falls, which gently cascade down the granite rock. Nonetheless, hiking can be difficult at times. A little slick and muddy because of recent rain. pretty wet up here today, crossed water about 6 times. We will also hit up Siler Bald and Wayah Bald after Rufus Morgan Falls. Come in late May- July (at this elevation) to enjoy the multitude of blooming Rhododendrons, Flame Azeleas and Mountain Laruel. A 60' waterfall, but if you're looking for high levels of water flow, you may want to head up US 64 to Dry Falls and the Cullasaja River. The waterfall was definitely worth the hike. If you’re hiking here with young children, part of this trail is narrow with big drop offs to the side. After you take the exit, continue down the hill for just under 0.2 miles to Wayah Road (SR 1310) on your Left ("Loafers Glory" gas station will be at the intersection of Old Murphy Rd. Rufus Morgan Falls - Nantahala National Forest 6-5-19 - Rufus Morgan Falls is a really nice 60-70' waterfall not to far west of Franklin, NC. HIGHLIGHTS: This short hike starts at the Nantahala Outdoor Center (NOC) at Wesser, NC and climbs 500 feet heading southbound on the Appalachian Trail to the Rufus Morgan Shelter.For the most part, it is a steep grade of switchbacks until the last few hundred yards before the shelter. There is a footbridge at one point below a smaller slide downstream of the main drop. Second half of the loop had lots of mushrooms and a small meadow with loads of goldenrod. A mile and a half down the dirt road is a clear placard for the Rufus Morgan trailhead. The trail is Blue Blazed and is well maintained. There was a mild rain when I did the trail, which made the rocks slippery. Hike Summary: This short hike starts at the Nantahala Outdoor Center (NOC) at Wesser, NC and climbs 500 feet heading southbound on the Appalachian Trail to the Rufus Morgan Shelter. Loved it ! It's super eaay and doesn't take long. The trail is moderately easy. The road to the trail was a little misleading. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. Got here around 330 and we're the only folks on the trail! If you have dogs, please keep them on a leash and the two stream crossings will give them a chance to hydrate during the trek. It’s up there. It leads to 60' Rufus Morgan Falls at its far end - a great destination. The structure sits about 50 yards off the trail to the east and looks to sleep roughly 6-8 people. The signed, blazed, and easy-to-follow trail is a loop, about a mile long, with no intersections. This is a loop trail but you can simply hike to the falls and return the same way you came if you like. Some were only 2 inches wide and two or three were much wider. The falls are beautiful and the sounds of cascading water by the creek are both relaxing and rejuvenating to sit and listen to. You have to take a trail off to the right of the loop to get up close to the waterfall. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash. We drove about an hour to get to the trail head – many years ago we did this trail with our first dog, Dolly, in the fall of 2010, so it’s been almost a decade since we have hiked this trail. Trail Guide. Morgan was a longtime Appalachian Trail volunteer, and the trail to the falls is reminiscent of many portions of the AT in the southern Appalachian Mountains. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and bird watching and is best used from March until October. Hiking the Appalachian Trail is a wonderful experience. Loved the waterfalls and slow climb to the top. The structure sits about 50 yards off the trail to the east and looks to sleep roughly 6-8 people. This 50-foot slide (aka Rough Fork Falls) emerges from a rhododendron thicket following a moderate .5-mile hike along the Rufus Morgan Trail. Trail Guide Best Trails & Photos. Follow the blue blazes into the cove. Great waterfall and hike. Such a worthwhile hike! Description: A gentle, 1.0 mile loop trail takes visitors through a mature cove forest with nice displays of spring wildflowers, and a small waterfall reached by a short side trail. The fall leaves were pretty! Hike with Gravity. The road is very narrow so be careful. This 50-foot slide (aka Rough Fork Falls) emerges from a rhododendron thicket following a moderate .5-mile hike along the Rufus Morgan Trail. Trail Guide Best Trails & Photos. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, and nature trips. Gnats are ubiquitous during the growing season, and often become a nuisance, due to both their numbers as well as their persistence. Rufus Morgan Trail, NC Latitude: 35.1539817 Longitude: -83.5446048 County: Macon Area: Wayah Bald Elevation: 871 meters - 2858 feet The Rufus Morgan Trail, located just outside of Franklin, NC off of the 'Wayah Road' is a great hike for just about anyone. I would recommend good grippy hiking shoes for those wet spots, but it was beautiful! Rufus Morgan Trail is a 1 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Franklin, North Carolina that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. Rufus Morgan Trail - Franklin, North Carolina in summer. steep climb to the fall but it is WORTH IT! Shortly thereafter (around 0.5 mile) a side trail is reached which travels to the 50' Rufus Morgan Falls, aka Rough Fork Falls. The falls were amazing after the rain. The water gal at the end is absolutely beautiful. Alan Cressler Both mosquito and tick bites can transmit diseases, however, and appropriate measures, such as long clothing and repellants, should be used. Nice quicker hike with a wonderful view of a spectacular waterfall! And the only way out is back the same way. ... At the moment, wikitrail only has information about the Appalachian Trail, but if this site proves to … We had our two Springers with us and they loved the stream crossings. Raised in the far western mountains of North Carolina he was well acquainted with the various peaks and valleys of the area. I hiked with my 3 year-old nephew, 39 year-old brother-in-law, his 70-something father, and their 12 year-old dog. We suggest that you come in mid to late April through early May for the best chance to see the floor of the forest covered with wildflowers. The road is gravel, but well maintained. The signed, blazed, and easy-to-follow trail is a loop, about a mile long, with no intersections. 3.3S: Jump-Up Lookout 0.8N: Bryson City, Nc. Loved this trail. Rufus Morgan Falls is named for the beloved poet, priest, and conservationist who lived in the area for nearly 100 years. People who have a lot of experience hiking long distance trails will often give this advice: "Don't quit on a bad day." Mosquitoes and ticks are present, but usually not a nuisance. Followed google maps and found the trail perfectly. Rufus Morgan Trail is located in western Franklin, North Carolina. Even with all of that it was great! The 1 mile (round trip) hike is family friendly and moderate in difficulty. Rufus Morgan Trail: Located within Nantahala National Forest, the 1 mile Rufus Morgan Trail forms a loop which is rated moderate.Marked with a blue blaze, Rufus Morgan Trail reaches a 10' waterfall (no name known). Total mileage is 1 mile. Short, 1 mile hike loop with beautiful waterfall in the forest. Carry and drink plenty of fluids, and use sunscreen on exposed skin, especially at higher elevations. trail is actually 1.5 mile loop. A. Rufus Morgan Shelter. Located 64 miles west-southwest of Asheville North Carolina. next shelter north ↑ 7.9 miles. Awesome hike! It does drop down the mountain right off the trail so watch the little ones, but over all we loved it. you'll feel like you're in middle of nowhere. There’s another one higher up. A relatively easy hike of a 1 mile loop trail leads you to Rufus Morgan Falls. Rufus Morgan Trail to Long Rocks Trail [PRIVATE PROPERTY] is a 2.1 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Hendersonville, North Carolina that offers the chance to see wildlife and is rated as moderate. Related terms: jeep trail, path, ski trail Man-made. Rufus Morgan Trail is a 1 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Franklin, North Carolina that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. Facilities are not available at the trailhead. I held my nephew’s hand the whole time as the drop off along parts of the trail was pretty steep. trail little muddy at stream crossings, easy to follow, well marked for a remote trail, kids 5 and above okay, no steep climb. Dwarf-crested Iris (Iris cristata). Trail Guide. The Rufus Morgan Trail February 21, 2017. (SR 1448) on your Right (Wayah Bald Sign). Rufus Morgan Falls. There’s a very large tree down about halfway to the falls and other hikers have made a muddy path up and around a bank so hikers can access the rest of the trail. Definitely not for children. This trail is more difficult than "moderate." I’m not really sure why this trail is rated “moderate” instead of easy. We balanced ourselves on boulders through about 3-4 creeks/streams. Makes for a great day! Rufus Morgan Falls is only about 30 minutes from Franklin North Carolina. This hike primary trail can be used both directions and has a moderate overall physical rating. The trail was making a long climb up to Cheoah Bald, frustratingly long. The fa… when turn off main road onto packed gravel, just keep driving, maybe 3-5 miles. Best Photos. US Forest Service, FM-RM-VE After 6.5 miles, turn left onto Forest Service Road 388, a well-maintained gravel road that may be gated in winter. Easy loop hike great for families and dogs. The top tier of the falls, which tumbles nearly 70-feet, is visible from an observation area just half a mile down the trail, and the second significant portion of a falls, a wide, 60-foot flume, appears another quarter mile down the trail. Be aware that it is slick, and there are lots of drop offs. Don’t stop at the first waterfall. Had a small dog and carried an infant in a backpack. Nice short hike to a beautiful waterfall. Rufus Morgan Trail Rufus Morgan Trail is a trail in North Carolina and has an elevation of 2884 feet. Get the app Rufus Morgan Intermediate. Higher elevations, however, can experience cold, wet weather at any time during the year. Loved the waterfall at the peak of the trail. The gps took us right to the road and then said we were there but we still had to drive another mile or so up the mountain. beautiful view of the falls and great views of the surroundings. And so worth it. Flowers Naturalist, Author, explorer: Rufus Morgan was one of the early pioneers in the founding and development of the Appalachian Trail. COORDINATES 35.15398, -83.5446. great hiking trail for all skill levels. Sunday was supposed to be a 75 degree day, and we were anxious to get back on the trails after a 6 week hiatus. The first part was a little tough for the smaller kids (ours was two when he hiked it) because it was a little steep, but once it leveled off there were plenty of great views and a reasonably easy hike. The trail was easy and a nice loop that takes you to a gorgeous waterfall. Morgan was a longtime Appalachian Trail volunteer, and the trail to the falls is reminiscent of many portions of the AT in the southern Appalachian Mountains. Wayah Bald Recreation Area via Appalachian Trail, Appalachian Trail: Wayah Bald to Tellico Gap, Winding Stair Gap to Siler Bald via Appalachian Trail, Appalachian Trail: Deep Gap to Dicks Creek, Bartram Trail: Wallace Branch to William's Pulpit, Standing Indian, Mount Albert, Nantahala Basin Loop, Wayah Bald to Sawmill Gap via Bartram Trail, Bartram Trail: Wayah Bald to Wallace Branch, Wayah Bald to Wilson Lick Ranger's Station. Rufus Morgan Falls Trail is a 1 mile hike with 470 feet elevation gain. I feel fortunate every day to be able to do this hike. The trail travels through a rhododendron-covered mountainside northeast of the falls. AT 2017: Day 13, Rufus Morgan Shelter to Stecoah Gap Goin' down the road feeling bad. Best time to enjoy: mid to late April. oh yeah, love the Waterfalls. Other than a few wet/muddy spots there wasn’t anything concerning or difficult. In addition to all of the other work he did, he was also responsible for single-handedly maintaining a 50-mile portion of the nearby Appalachian Trail. As stated earlier, the hike to the falls is about 1 mile long and is a nicely blue blazed loop trail. My husband and I hike a lot and would rate this more easy to moderate than easy due to hiking up in elevation most of the way to the big falls and due to stepping over and around a lot of roots and rocks on the trail. Biting insects are generally not a problem. Rufus Morgan Falls Trail is a moderately easy, 1 mile hike in Nantahala National Forest that will take about 40 minutes to complete with Fido. One end starts across the creek from the parking area, and the other end starts in the parking area itself. for another 6.4 miles until you come to FR (forest road) #388 on your Left (you'll need to pay attention to your odometer because there are no signage for Rufus Morgan Falls or Trail, just a small brown sign with the numbers "388" on it). My kiddos lover this hike. Rufus Morgan Waterfall is a 233 ft black diamond singletrack trail located near Franklin North Carolina. We all did just fine. For the most part, it is a steep grade of switchbacks until the last few hundred yards before the shelter. ", THE LOCAL DIRECTIONSFrom intersection of U.S. Hwy-64 W and U.S. Hwy-23/441 North in Franklin take Hwy-64 W towards Murphy, NC for 3.8 miles to "Old Murphy Rd. A large tree was over the trail on the ascent that was hard to avoid due to the mud. The waterfall is at the half way point of a 1 mile loop, so the hike can either be done as a loop or an out and back. Route for passage from one point to another; does not include roads or highways. Mailstop Code: 1103 There are no restroom facilities at the trailhead. It was great. Please take necessary precautions while hiking outdoors. I was getting Cabin Fever at home, so no better cure than a trip to a mountain cabin! If you have dogs, please keep them on a leash and the two stream crossings will give them a chance to hydrate during the trek. Best Photos. Rufus Morgan Falls The 60-foot Rufus Morgan Falls is located just outside the town of Franklin. Rufus Morgan Trail; Rufus Morgan Trail Trail. GPS Coordinates. Wildlife encounters with large animals such as black bears and wild boar are unusual but potentially very dangerous. The first 1/2 mile was covered with lush greenery and wonderful windflowers. wear good shoes, boots if you have them. This little out of the way trail is a lovely spot that has soft ground and several water sources for Fido. Common wildflowers include crested iris, large flowered-trillium, jack-in-the-pulpit, black cohosh, blue cohosh, foamflower, Solomon’s seal, Clinton’s lily, showy orchid, waterleaf, large-flowered bellwort, umbrella-leaf, and turtlehead. Overall great nevertheless. Fairly easy as we took our time. Rufus Morgan Trail A short 12-mile drive from Franklin, NC, the Rufus Morgan trail is a great option for hikers of all ages and abilities. A. Rufus Morgan Shelter: Edit. Took our smal yorkie and and he did well. If you're looking for a nice half-day hike to see a local waterfall, the Rufus Morgan Falls trail is a great place to wander to. and Wayah Rd, so you'll know where to turn). Not too many people on a weekday. Don’t stop. In addition, trails in the region are often rocky, and require supportive shoes and sure footing. Great little trail with a few stream crossings. Hike with Gravity. Great for kids and dogs. Pretty, short jaunt up clearly marked trail. Really nice short loop trail to lovely waterfall. AT 2017: Day 12, Wayah Shelter to Rufus Morgan Shelter These things that are pleasin' you can hurt you somehow. Hiked today following 3 days of heavy rain; if you usually go without, I’d recommend hiking polls as crossings were quite slick. Top Hikes. A. Rufus Morgan Shelter Waypoint: ARufusM 35.32427,-83.59018 County/State: Swain NC Elevation: 2300' or USGS elevation 135.9 miles from Springer and 2057.1 miles to Katahdin next shelter south ↓ 4.9 miles. Macon County, North Carolina. Photo by Bill Lea. Would definitely recommend to people of all ages! County. Near the falls the trail crosses a rock slab at the site of a fairly recent landslide. Would recommend for anyone, easy for kids, older adults and dogs. Continue on FR #388 for 2 miles to the parking area for "Rufus Morgan Trailhead". There is a smaller waterfall but the main event is a few dozen yards above that, so don't get faked out and miss the bigger one. A little steep at the start. Trails > Appalachian Trail > Franklin to Fontana Dam. 1400 Independence Ave., SW Recent Ridelog Activity on Trail Gorgeous forest all around. The large falls at the end of the hike was quite beautiful. He loved it and the waterfall is a great payoff. Several tiny creek crossings on the loop. Great hike! Get the app Rufus Morgan Intermediate. Ownership and Management: U.S. Forest Service, Nantahala National Forest, Wayah Ranger District. One big tree down across the path as of November 2020. Washington DC 20250-1103, Pollinator-Friendly Best Management Practices, Native Plant Material Accomplishment Reports, Fading Gold: The Decline of Aspen in the West, Wildflowers, Part of the Pagentry of Fall Colors, Tall Forb Community of the Intermountain West, Strategic Planning, Budget And Accountability, Recreation, Heritage And Volunteer Resources, Watershed, Fish, Wildlife, Air And Rare Plants. Trail reports are used to indicate a trails current condition and inform builders and other riders about any issues on a trail. The entire right hand side of the falls are lined with Rhododendron. dont worry you can't miss sign for trail head access, it's only parking and sign on the road, clearly marked. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and bird watching and is best used from March until October. Make a day out of it and see the nearby "Wayah Bald Lookout Tower. Not too bad at all. Weather in the southern Appalachians is generally mild but wet, with abundant rainfall throughout the year. After turning off the paved road, the trail head is about 2 miles up the mountain on a dirt road. This muddy path around the tree was slick/slippery. Rufus Morgan trail has really lovely creek crossings several places along the trail. all shelters Top Runs. No bathrooms but it’s a short hike. 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