Pinnacle Falls Hike Route Map

Pinnacle Falls on Abner Creek

Pinnacle Falls is a large waterfall which tumbles off the Blue Ridge Escarpment just above the small South Carolina community of Rocky Bottom.  I'll be honest, before this hike Pinnacle Falls had never crossed my 'potential waterfall hikes' radar screen.  This is perhaps due to the fact that, until recently, access had been restricted along the more well-known routes to the falls from downstream.  On this day I was finishing up a great day of waterfall hunting and the hike to Pinnacle would act as the grand finale.  

The 'trail' to Pinnacle (most of which is actually along old forest roads) begins from Chimneytop Gap along the road which leads up from Rocky Bottom to Sassafras Mountain (SC's highest point).  From the gap the route heads west climbing and descending quite gently before the final, fairly steep, descent to the falls itself.  I've seen Pinnacle Falls listed as being 150-or-more feet tall.  I think that's stretching things a bit but it is still a very impressive waterfall.  The main drop is around 50-feet but cascades continue both up and downstream creating a total fall that I would estimate being in the 100-foot range.  This is a pleasant, short, and fairly easy (with the exception of the final quarter-mile drop) hike to a spectacular waterfall.  I highly recommend it if you find yourself in the area!  

So, come on along with me and see what I discovered...

Trailhead GPS Coordinates:  35.062213, -82.798392

Route Type:  Out-and-back             Difficulty:  MODERATE  (Petzoldt Rating:  3.60 )

Mileage Hiked:  2.6 miles                  Hike Duration:  2:20

Trailhead Temp:  65'F                       Trail Traffic: None!

Min. Elevation:  1,980'                        Max. Elevation:  2,400'

Total Vertical Gain:  500'                  Avg. Elevation Gain / Mile:  192'

Trails Used (blaze Color):  Pinnacle Falls Trail (unblazed)


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  • Dave Kathy Weemhoff

    on March 14, 2016

    What an awesome place to trek to!! Wow! Thanks for sharing.