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Post Thanksgiving Trek at Gorges State Park, to Rainbow Falls

November 28, 2023 @ 11:00 am - 4:00 pm

Where: Gorges State Park, hike to Rainbow Falls

Meet: Gorges State Park

Distance and difficulty: ~3 miles, moderate; trail type – out and back

Elevation gain: 770′

Join us for an approximately 3-mile trek to Rainbow Falls in Gorges State Park. At this location, the Horsepasture River plunges around 125′ creating mist as the water crashes on the rocks below, and when the sun hits this mist, just right, it creates a rainbow at the base of the falls, hence the waterfalls namesake.

The portion of the Horsepasture River that the hike will feature was designated as a National Wild and Scenic River in 1985. It is an escarpment river with five major waterfalls and numerous cascades, rapids, boulders, and rock outcroppings. Also, in 1999, a purchase of land by the State of North Carolina preserved what is now Gorges State Park which encompasses nearly 7,500-acres.

*Space is limited and pre-registration is required, and space is limited to 20 participants. RSVP in the block/link below and for more information, contact [email protected].


This hike sponsored by Conserving Carolina and the NC Cooperative Extension of Transylvania County and is free, guided, and open to the public. The hike will meet at Rainbow Falls and Turtleback Trailhead parking lot at 11:00 a.m. and will leave promptly at 11:15 p.m. Hikers should plan to return to the area in the late afternoon, time varying with group size and pace of hikers.

Be sure to wear appropriate clothing and sturdy footwear. Bring a bag lunch and/or snack and plenty of water for yourself.

In case of inclement weather, please contact Hannah by email at: [email protected] by 9:00 a.m. on the day of the hike and/or check the Conserving Carolina website ‘calendar’ and/or Facebook page to see if the hike will take place. Please also remember to bring any medication that you may need in the event of an emergency (ie: epinephrine, nitroglycerine, insulin, etc.). Hike leaders will carry a first aid kit; however, it may not contain specific medication for your individual needs.

Before each hike, you will be asked to sign a waiver form. For your safety, do not attempt any hike beyond your ability and experience. This schedule is subject to change.


November 28, 2023
11:00 am - 4:00 pm
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Rainbow Falls and Turtleback Trailhead
Lake Toxaway, NC 28747 United States + Google Map