Rutherford Outdoor Coalition

Wildcat Rock/Little Bearwallow

Wildcat Rock/Little Bearwallow


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Hiking Walking/Running Cycling Equestrian Paddling Camping

Length 3 miles (one-way)

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COVID-19 STATUS - Open (last updated 8/19/20)

Come hike the newly opened trail to Little Bearwallow Falls and on to Wildcat Rock. The challenging but rewarding climb includes a 100-foot cliff and waterfall and views at Wildcat Rock.


Conserving Carolina manages the trail and is to thank for its construction and association conservation easements. To see their details desription of the trail click on the link below:

For another description of the trail and the future plans, see the link below:


The trail is part of the newly designated Hickory Nut Gorge State Trail System. That system is envisioned to be more than 100 miles of trails throughout Hickory Nut Gorge. To read more about the plans and see a map of the current and proposed trails see the link below:


WHERE: Gerton, NC

DIRECTIONS: Off of US74A, a grassy parking area is most recognizable by a rock wall and stone chimney as well as a three-panel trailhead kiosk sign. The trailhead is also marked by a Henderson County Parks & Rec sign reading "Upper Hickory Nut Gorge Trailhead.

Post Trip Report


Posted 10.22.2017
Willie Lowe

Willie Lowe

A really nice uphill walk with lots of steps and slope. Trail is well-constructed and well-marked. Fitbit said it was longer than a mile but when trails are this pretty; who cares?
Would recommend going after a wet spell or a good rain so the waterfall is worth the climb. Trailhead well-marked on Hwy 74 between Bat Cave and Gerton

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Appropriate Clothing

Weather can change quickly in the mountains. Always tuck rain gear into your backpack and bring along layers of clothes.