Last Updated on September 7, 2021
Last Updated on September 7, 2021
If you plan to visit Western NC, please check beforehand to see if the area is safe following the recent flooding. Officials have closed some sections of Pisgah National Forest (including Forest Heritage Scenic Byway and Blue Ridge Parkway stops) to keep visitors out of danger. Please respect signage and local guidance.
Widow’s Creek Falls is a beautiful waterfall located inside Stone Mountain State Park. Of the four named waterfalls in the park (including Stone Mountain Falls), we’ll argue that Widow’s Creek Falls is undoubtedly the prettiest!
With a pool, cascades, and plenty of space around it, the falls get pretty busy in the summer for sliding and picnicking. It’s also just a short walk away from the parking lot, making this a convenient stop.
Visiting this waterfall is perfect for all age groups and inside this guide, we’ll share why, including driving directions to Widow’s Creek Falls, tips for visiting, and more things to do at Stone Mountain State Park.
If you’re looking for something specific, here’s how we organized things:
- Widow’s Creek Falls Facts
- Driving Directions
- Tips for Visiting (When to Visit and Safety Tips)
- More Things to Do In and Around Stone Mountain State Park
- Nearby Things to Do Outside the Park
Widow’s Creek Falls Facts
Widow’s Creek Falls is a short walk (just a few hundred feet) from the parking lot. The main waterfall is about 25 feet tall and utterly stunning.
What makes this waterfall even more remarkable is that it empties into a small pool, followed by cascades that serve as a natural waterslide. The cold water runs over smooth rocks into a shallow pool before it trickles down a babbling brook.
It’s common for visitors to wade in the pool and slide down the natural waterslide.
The most convenient way to reach Widow’s Creek Falls is from the Visitor Center side of Stone Mountain State Park. There’s another gate off of Longbottom Rd and, while the ride from there is quite scenic, much of it is gravel.
From the Visitor Center, you’ll weave past several picnic spots and over a couple of bridges. The parking area for Widow’s Creek Falls is just past a bridge to the right. A sign will be visible for the waterfall.
From the parking lot, the waterfall is less than a mile away. You’ll hear the water crashing into a shallow pool loud and clear as you walk toward it.
Tips for Visiting Widow’s Creek Falls
When to Visit
As we mentioned, Widow’s Creek Falls is very popular during the summer and warmer months. If you plan on visiting during this time of year, we recommend going early in the morning before it gets crowded. In the morning, the sun faces the falls, illuminating the already beautiful scenery.
Weekdays are also less crowded, though we’ve still seen people there as early as 9:00 am!
Another option is to visit during the winter, though the water is definitely too cold for a dip then. However, during winter visits, we’ve been the only ones there, even on weekends! It’s perfect for pictures and just relaxing.
There are plenty of rocks to sit on and shallow areas below the waterfall for younger children to play in. However, here are some things to keep in mind to ensure a safe visit.
Even though sliding is a common activity here, keep in mind that no natural rock slide is entirely risk-free, so exercise caution while on the wet rocks.
Having grown up with a kayaker father, I will always remind people to wear life jackets and helmets when in the water for utmost caution. However, I also recognize that isn’t always an option. Have fun, but be safe!
Ready to Enjoy Widow’s Creek Falls?
We love visiting Widow’s Creek Falls and always look forward to our next visit, no matter the time of year. If you’re familiar with this waterfall, we’d love to know what you think of it? Is it also your favorite at Stone Mountain State Park?
In case you’ve never visited, we hope you’ll check out this impressive waterfall. When you do, please feel free to tell us about your experiences at Widow’s Creek Falls. You can also share photos and videos in our Facebook Group!
More Things to Do In and Around Stone Mountain State Park
The 4.5-mile Stone Mountain Loop is the most popular hike at the park. It’s known for a massive granite dome and amazing 200-foot namesake waterfall.
There are offshoots of the loop, including the Cedar Rock Trail (2 miles round-trip, Moderate), Wolf Rock Trail (3 miles round-trip, Moderate), and the Middle Falls/Lower Falls Trail (1-mile round-trip, Moderate).
Other popular activities at Stone Mountain State Park include fishing, picnicking, and, of course, camping.
More Things to Do Nearby
If you are looking for more fun after hiking, we recommend checking out the nearby towns of Wilkesboro and Elkin.
Wilkesboro has a notable history of moonshining and music, but there is plenty more to explore! You can rent a bike downtown and ride the Yadkin River Greenway or do some serious mountain biking at Cub Creek Park.
For an outdoor activity, check out Rendezvous Mountain State Educational Forest, complete with trails and beautiful mountain views.
If you’re more of a beer person, check out Skull Camp. Enjoy some local beer with their delicious burgers or amazing smoked wings. Elkin also has an excellent trail system, with Carter Falls (0.4 miles round-trip) being one of our favorite hikes in the area.
Yadkin Valley Wineries
The Yadkin Valley is known for its numerous fabulous wineries, all of which we recommend checking out after your hikes.
Nearby McRitchie Winery and Elkin Creek Vineyard (along with Grassy Creek Vineyard) are a few of our favorite North Carolina wineries, not just in the Yadkin Valley. Those three sit along the Surry County Wine Trail, which hosts about 20 of the area’s wineries.
These three wineries are a few of many that happen to be kid-friendly, too!
Combining Widow’s Creek Falls with a winery is one of our favorite ways to enjoy a refreshing summer day!