A Visit to the Upper and Lower Rose River Falls

Join Randall Sanger, author of Waterfalls of Virginia & West Virginia: 174 Falls in the Old Dominion and the Mountain State, on a visit to the Rose River Falls.

The Rose River Falls hike is a pleasant stroll through beautiful forest; the stream parallels the trail about halfway into the hike.

Rose River Falls

From the parking area, cross to the east side of Skyline Drive to the trailhead. Follow the Rose River Fire Road for a very short distance, and then turn left onto the Big Meadows Horse Trail/Rose River Loop Trail. At 0.5 mile, when the Horse Trail bears to the left, continue on the Rose River Loop Trail, and at about 1.3 mile in, you’ll arrive at the Upper Falls. You’ll have to scramble down from the trail a short distance to reach the stream. You can continue on this trail to Dark Hollow Falls and then hike up the Rose River Fire Road back to your car. Consult a park trail map for the Rose River/Dark Hollow circuit hike.

I seriously considered making the crazy scramble down to the base of the Lower Falls, but with the low water flow, and wanting to maximize my time in the park, I opted for this view from a perch off the main trail.

Follow the directions to Upper Rose River Falls (above). The perch I accessed for this image is just a few yards from the Upper Falls and on a spur path to the edge of the cliff. To access the base of the Lower Falls, look for a user-created path about 0.1 mile from the point where you scramble down to the Upper Falls.

You might also like Randall Sanger’s post about Sandstone Falls in West Virginia.

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Liliane Opsomer
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