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Quick Overnight - Huntfish Falls, Wilson Creek Wilderness
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Nate Powell
(powell1nj) - F

Locale: North Carolina
Quick Overnight - Huntfish Falls, Wilson Creek Wilderness on 03/13/2012 16:29:49 MDT Print View


Thought I'd do a quick write-up on an overnight I did last weekend. Headed out to the Wilson Creek Wilderness early Saturday morning and stayed until late Sunday morning. The weather was killer (lows of about 30 and highs at about 60 - sunny). I wanted to test out some gear I just finished making - a 9 x 9 tarp and a new pack - before taking it out on the Foothills Trail in a few weeks.


Got out on the trial by about 10:30am (2.5 hour drive and beers the night before made for a not-quite-crack-of-dawn situation). The trail starts descending right away down to Lost Cove Creek and intersects with the trail of the same name.

First Crossing

This is where Lost Cove Creek trail crosses the creek to go west. Super nice little trail with 5 or 6 creek crossings. I was loving my new La Sportiva Wildcats for these - just plowed right on through. I actually headed east along the trail though at first, which puts you at Huntfish Falls after about 10 seconds of walking.

Huntfish Falls

Huntfish Falls. Heading east, this is on your left and empties into a killer swimming hole...

Swimming Hole

I'm told this spot gets pretty busy in summer - I only saw two other people camped nearby. There is also another very cool little waterfall on the other side of the trail at this spot.

Little Falls

After snapping some photos at Huntfish I continued east / northeast for about 1.5 or 2 miles to Gragg Prong Falls. There's easy access to the top of Gragg Prong from the trail and I stopped for lunch.

Gragg Prong Lunch

The ramen was indeed tasty.

View from Gragg Prong

Looking down Gragg Prong Falls.

Strangely enough, a bat also decided it was lunch time despite the daylight. He was munching down on gnats in a major way.


I was dive-bombed at least 3 times.

After lunch I headed back down the Lost Cove Creek Trail the way I had come. This went for about 4 or 4.5 miles (including the backtrack and back by Huntfish Falls) to where the trail interects with the Timber Ridge Trail. This trail heads up from Lost Cove Creek and shockingly follows Timber Ridge, reconnecting with Lost Cove Creek Trail south of Gragg Prong Falls. There's a nice little camp right when you reach the top of the ridge. Just a note, it's mostly nice, easy switchbacks getting up to the ridge, but the last part (right after a bit of a trail junction - turn right) is a little harsh, especially when you're hucking extra water.


Setting up camp.

Tarp Camping

Blue tarp camping - totally digging the 9+ x 9+ space of my new tarp. I had fun playing with different pitches for about an hour before I decided a lean-to facing east for the sunrise factor would be key. Speaking of which...


Sunrise Tarp

Needless to say it was a fine morning. Nice and chilly - I took my time with coffee and breakfast before packing up for the short hike out.

Ridge View

This gives a pretty idea of the views you come across hiking along the Timber Ridge Trail. Not too shabby.


All in all it was a great little mini-trip. The new gear worked out great - my pack is the most comfortable I've ever carried and I'm digging the versatility and space of the square tarp. I'm all set for the Foothills Trail - leaving two weeks from tomorrow. Score.

I highly recommend the Wilson Creek Wilderness, especially in the winter/shoulder seasons when there are less folks around. Tons of great trails, views and waterfalls. Thanks for reading - hope you enjoyed it.

Edited by powell1nj on 03/13/2012 16:35:31 MDT.

Thom Darrah
(thomdarrah) - MLife

Locale: Southern Oregon
Quick Overnight - Huntfish Falls, Wilson Creek Wilderness on 03/13/2012 16:37:27 MDT Print View

Nice TR and pictures, thanks! Nice creek and falls.

Ike Jutkowitz
(Ike) - M

Locale: Central Michigan
re: Wilson Creek on 03/13/2012 16:56:52 MDT Print View

Hi Nate,
Thanks for the great report. I passed through the Wilson Creek Wilderness about a year ago and would love to go back. It was a really cool place. Some pretty deep crossings that were quite cold this time of year. Your report brought back great memories.

By the way, that bat was totally rabid.

Nate Powell
(powell1nj) - F

Locale: North Carolina
re: on 03/13/2012 17:05:13 MDT Print View

Thanks for the comments fellas - it was a fun time. Ike, I can't believe I didn't put that together on the bat being rabid. It was moving around pretty erratically - even for a bat. Also, can't remember if I commented on it or not, but I really enjoyed your Pictured Rocks trip report a while back (and all your others as well). I'm actually from Mt. Pleasant, MI which is about as Central Michigan as you can get :). Anyway, I've done some trips in the UP during the fall and after that report a winter Pictured Rocks trip is definitely on my list.

Patrick S
(xpatrickxad) - F

Locale: Upper East TN
Re: Quick Overnight - Huntfish Falls, Wilson Creek Wilderness on 03/15/2012 16:50:48 MDT Print View

Thanks for sharing this. Also how have I not heard of this area?! I'm going to have to hit it up ASAP. Any must see trails in the Wilson Creek Wilderness?

Caleb Boyle
wilderness on 03/22/2012 08:01:55 MDT Print View

Nice report and photos. Atually, the Wilson Creek area of Pisgah NF is not a wilderness area, although I think there are some wilderness study areas close by.


Tom Clark
(TomClark) - MLife

Locale: East Coast
Re: Quick Overnight - Huntfish Falls, Wilson Creek Wilderness on 04/10/2012 19:24:00 MDT Print View

The Wilson Creek area is a pretty spot. I've driven through, but never hiked there, so it was nice to read your trip report.