Virginia, Orchard Falls/ Cornelius Creek Trail

Location: Blue Ridge Mountains
State: Virginia
Trail Type:
Hiking, backpacking
Length: 1.5 miles
Difficulty: Easy

Trail Information:

There are two interconnected and quite scenic trails in one here, very well maintained by the National services.

One leads to Apple Orchard Falls, and the other forms a waterfall circuit of which the Forest Service is quite proud and rightly so. They are nothing short of incredible.

Spectacular sunsets are half the fun of the outdoors

Some trails in this area follow old logging roads established before 1917, when the land was owned by the Virginia Lumber Company.

In the early 1990s the Forest Service gave 1,825 acres of this now old-growth forest the status of a Special Management Area, and the focus shifted away from potential timber harvest to the enhancement of recreation and wildlife.

The trails of this circuit hike were taken in hand to aid in putting hikers in close contact with a lovely watershed area, that lies below one of the highest peaks in this part of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

A walk through these woodlands will offer close encounters with such beautiful wildlife as the oven bird, red-eyed vireo, and scarlet tanager as well as white tail deer, black bear.

The extremely rare reptile, the Peaks of Otter salamander is also a resident of this area.


The route dips off the Blue Ridge Parkway for a nice 2.8-mile out-and-back day hike, with a return climb of 1,000 feet. But a much easier approach is just a short drive away. From Apple Tree Road, the round trip hike is just 1.5 miles and involves a climb of only 600 feet.

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