Moore Cove Falls: guide to a kid-friendly hike (2022)

Moore Cove Falls is a 1.2 mile out and back trail in Pisgah National Forest with a waterfall.

Photo of waterfall at the of Moore Cove Falls' trail

Moore Cove Falls Quick Facts

Trailhead location: US 276 Pisgah Forest, NC

Trail length: 1.2 mile out and back. There’s a waterfall at the turnaround point.

Difficulty: Easy. Our three year old walked the full trail.

Elevation change: Minimal. There are stairs at the beginning, though.

Distance from downtown Asheville: 38 miles

Drive time from downtown Asheville: 50 minutes

Trail Condition: Can be muddy after heavy rain. This is when the waterfall is most impressive. The trail is very shaded.

Getting to the Moore Cove Falls trailhead

The trail is located in Pisgah National Forest near Brevard along Pisgah Highway (Highway 276.)

If driving from downtown Asheville, you can either take 151 S through Candler or 280 through Mills River.

Speaking of 280, our daytrip itinerary from Asheville to Brevard and the Blue Ridge Parkway uses this route. This loop drives right by the trailhead.

Parking at Moore Cove Falls

Photo of Moore Cove Falls trail sign
Trail sign at the entrance

Parking at the trailhead can fill up. In the past, we have arrived by 9 or 10am and there are typically a ton of cars there already. Despite that, the trail itself never feels crowded.

If coming from Pisgah Forest, NC, you’ll see a designated paring area as you arrive and you should be able to pull over.

If the parking area is full, go past the entrance and over the bridge and park along the road there. You’ll have to walk across the bridge, though, so be careful! The road can get busy and people will often drive really fast on it.

Hiking this family-friendly trail

Moore Cove Falls is a well-maintained, relatively easy hike with a great waterfall about 0.6 miles in. The trail is not too strenuous, though it has a few moderate inclines.

It typically takes us around 25 minutes to get to the waterfall (the turnaround point) with our kids. Our oldest (4) walks and we carry our youngest in this backpack carrier. It’s not a top of the line carrier, but it’s cost-effective and great for shorter hikes.

The waterfall at the turnaround point is a great place for a snack and water break. Our boys love to hang out at the creek that comes off of it. We recently saw a group that hiked with an umbrella for a cute photo op under the waterfall.

The waterfall’s flow depends on recent rains, so it can get pretty dry when we haven’t had any in a while.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long is Moore Cove Falls trail?

The trail is 1.2 miles roundtrip. It’s a relatively easy hike with a great waterfall about 0.6 miles in.

Where do you park for Moore Cove Falls trail?

Parking for the trail is along the road just before you get to the trailhead if coming from the Brevard entrance to the forest.

Can you swim at Moore Cove Falls?

No, there is not a dedicated swim area here. You can definitely splash along the rocks there, though.

Is there a restroom at Moore Cove Falls?

No, there are no restrooms at the trail. However, there is one at Sycamore Flats and another at Coon Tree Picnic area just a few miles away.

Nearby Activities and Hikes

View of Pisgah Inn with "Daytrip Itinerary: Brevard and the Blue Ridge Parkway"
View of Looking Glass Falls with text "everything to know about Looking Glass Falls"

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