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Crabtree Meadows

Crabtree Meadows is a campground and recreation area along the Blue Ridge Parkway at Mile Post 339.5 in Yancey County.  The highlight of the area is Crabtree Falls, a beautiful 70-foot waterfall on Big Crabtree Creek.  There was once a large number of Crabtrees in the area, hence the name, but few remain.  However, the area is home to a large number of beautiful wildflowers.

Directions:

Crabtree Meadows is located at Mile Post 339.5 along the Blue Ridge Parkway.  From Little Switzerland, get on the Blue Ridge Parkway southbound for about 5.5 miles and the park will be on the right.  From Burnsville, take NC-80 south for about 14 miles and turn right to get on the Blue Ridge Parkway heading north.  The park will be on the left in about 4.5 miles.  Use the map below to generate customized directions.

Map:

Hiking:

Crabtree Falls Trail:

Length: 2.5 miles (loop)
Difficulty: Moderate to Strenuous

Crabtree Falls Trail is 2.5-mile loop trail that leads from the campground down to Crabtree Falls and back.  From the trailhead, follow the trail 800 feet to a split.  You can either way at this point - it's about 0.7 miles to the falls going right and 1.5 miles going left.  Taking the shorter route, the trail quickly becomes steep as it heads down to the waterfall with switchbacks and a number of stone stairs.  At the base, a footbridge leads across Big Crabtree Creek to views of the waterfall.  Continuing on, the trail heads steeply back up through a number of stairs and switchbacks, then levels off.  From here, it follows Big Crabtree Creek upstream past a number of pretty little cascades.  The trail then crosses the creek and heads towards the campground before returning to the split.

Crabtree Falls:

Crabtree Falls, also called Upper Falls, is a beautiful 70-foot cascading waterfall on Big Crabtree Creek.  The water fans out as it cascades down a number of small ledges, making this a rare waterfall that looks better with lower water flow.  When the water flow is too high, many of the cascades will be drowned out.

Photos:



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