South River Falls Trail

#1 of 4 trails in Rapidan Wildlife Management Area

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South River Falls Trail is a 5.2 mile loop trail located near Stanardsville, Virginia that features a waterfall. The trail is rated as moderate and primarily used for hiking.

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David Baker (325)

11 Completed7 Reviews

I have hiked to the falls numerous times and always enjoy going back. My favorite was a Christmas Eve hike with a little snow still on the ground.

Pilgrim B (112)

7 Completed7 Reviews

We've taken this trial twice in the past few years. Once on a cold rainy spring day, with lots of fog and lots of snow melt and rainwater in every gully; more recently in mid October on a cold rainy fall day, with fog and a colorful leaf strewn pathway. In the spring, be prepared to ford at least two places. Due to the weather, we pretty much had the trail to ourselves, which is how we best enjoyed it. The extra descent to the base of the falls adds another mile or so to the total. The fire road is a boring way to to hike this, but if you're tired, it is an easier return route.

Zehra Nasif (242)

12 Completed5 Reviews

Will Patterson (189)

17 Completed2 Reviews

Me and my family where hiking and there where vines that you could swing on like Tarzan!

Susan Laiewski (178)

4 Completed2 Reviews

Used to hike when younger... started hiking again with the start of the new year. Have done 4 hikes thus far and this was the best. Wide trails, clean... there were a few spots across streams that were rocky and had to look beyond to see best place to cross (adds to the adventure!). There was snow on the ground from the previous snow and made for picturesque scenery, some sloshy spots, but all-around awesome hike. Make sure you have camera ready! The falls are an awesome stop for picnic, photo ops, and to really take in nature! If you are in the area, I recommend this hike.

Ian Dunwiddie (294)

10 Completed2 Reviews

This hike is perfect for anyone who likes a little bit of a challenge and multiple terrain types. Do yourself a favor and take a right at the fire road and head down into the gorge to see the falls up close. Swimming or at least soaking is possible in several pools. We will be returning to complete the 10 mile circuit.

James Hartsell (471)

8 Completed2 Reviews

Great hike to take if you have the endurance!!! Nice steep walk down to the first overlook with a lot to see on the way there. If you decide to hike to the bottom it's also a steep hike but beautiful view at the bottom. But since it is so steep on the way down be prepared for the walk back!!! Seems like never ending but is a great workout!!! If you can't hang definitely take the fire road but that's for quitters!!

Monica C. (46)

Forgot to add that pets are allowed. This is not in stanardsville. You actually have to go in through Skyline Drive and pay $15 for a seven day pass. However, there are so many trails I opted for the annual pass for $30 instead.

Monica C. (46)

If you go to the bottom and take the fire road all the way back up, it will leave you at what appears to be a dead end (two posts with chain link). Don't panic though. if you hop the chain link, you are left at the main road adjacent to the south river falls parking lot. The fire road feels like forever, just stick with it.

Christin Schumacher (775)

11 Completed6 Reviews

Seems I'm in the minority, but I didn't love this hike.

The first half was enjoyable due to the scenery. Nice mossy rock outcroppings, little frogs, lots of water. This part is completely downhill. Steep but easily navigable.

The base of the falls was underwhelming. Maybe because falls are my favorite trail feature and this had such good reviews. Just a bit disappointed.

The way back we went up the fire road. This part was a continuous incline. Not too steep but enough to get you sweating. The scenery on this leg of the trip was not very interesting.

All in all a nice hike, but I won't be clamoring to do it again.