Dog Friendly Hiking Trails in Highlands, NC

There are 5 dog friendly hiking trails in Highlands, and 5 more nearby. Use the links below to get an overview of each one, see pictures, print directions, and even read reviews from other dog owners. Coming from out of town? Get a discounted rate on pet friendly hotels in Highlands.

Pet Friendly Kelsey-Hutchinson Founders Park
Kelsey-Hutchinson Founders Park Kelsey-Hutchinson Founders Park is dog-friendly! The Park is a retreat for workers and visitors by day and a space for concerts, ice skating, arts and crafts, markets, and festivals by night. Dogs must be cleaned up after and leashed during their visit to Kelsey-Hutchinson. Dog pickup stations and trash bins are scattered throughout Kelsey-Hutchinson Founders Park. See Details
Pet Friendly Dry Falls
Dry Falls Dry Falls is pet-friendly. This popular waterfall located a few miles outside of Highlands, gives you the rare chance to walk safely behind the water flow. This 75-ft. tall waterfall in the Nantahala National Forest flows over a cliff, allowing you to walk behind the falls and stay dry (ish). Dogs are welcome on a leash, as long as they are cleaned up after. See Details
Mountain Waters Scenic Byway Mountain Waters Scenic Byway is pet-friendly. This sixty-mile drive leads through National Forest's two river gorges, hardwood forests and countryside. It's ideal for dogs who don't enjoy hiking, although you can stop along the way and get out for a walk at certain spots. See Details
Yellow Mountain Trail Yellow Mountain Trail is pet-friendly. This one's for more experienced canine hikers as it is rated difficult. Grab your supplies and stride out on a trail that leaves to astonishing views from the top of a mountain. Take pause at the fire tower at the top and enjoy the natural show. Leashed dogs are welcome, as long as they are cleaned up after. See Details
Secret Falls Trail Head Secret Falls Trail Head is a pet-friendly trail in Highlands. This 45 minute brisk walk leads to a 35 foot high waterfall and small lake below. Dogs are welcome, but owners are reminded to clean up after them and make sure they are leashed for other hiker's safety. See Details
Bartram Trail (Jones Gap to Whiterock Mountain) The Bartram Trail from Jones Gap to Whiterock Mountain is a moderately easy, 4.6 mile hike in Nantahala National Forest that will take about 2.5 hours to complete with Fido. This section of the 100 mile long Bartram Trail starts at Jones Gap and heads northwest to Whiterock Mountain with some side trails along the way that offer summit views. Please note that dogs must be on a leash between April 1 and August 15, but must be under control at all times. See Details
Gorges State Park Gorges State Park is perfect for those looking for a challenge. Most of the trails in Gorges State Park are labeled as strenuous, but can offer rewarding panorama of Lake Jocassee or waterfalls. Trails range from half a mile to fourteen and a half miles, so be sure to check out the parks website to figure out what trail meets your needs. Leashed dogs are always welcomed! See Details
Blue Ridge Railroad Historical Trail The Blue Ridge Railroad Historical Trail is one of 1600 rail-trails supported by Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, a nonprofit organization that is working to create a nationwide network of trails from former rail lines and connecting corridors. Previously an unused railroad corridor, this "rail-trail" is now a great place to walk Fido in Mountain Rest! The map below shows a parking area with convenient access to the Blue Ridge Railroad Historical Trail. Rails-to-Trails Conservancy has generously provided map data for this trail to Bring Fido for informational purposes only. For more detailed trail information, please visit TrailLink.com. See Details
Oconee State Park Pets are allowed in most outdoor areas provided they are kept under physical restraint or on a leash not longer than six feet. Owners will be asked to remove noisy or dangerous pets or pets that threaten or harass wildlife. Pets are not allowed in or around lodging facilities. Among the park's 1,165 acres are two mountain lakes and a variety of recreational facilities for visitors to enjoy, including campgrounds, cabins, picnic areas and hiking trails. The park also serves as the western terminus for the 85-mile Foothills Trail, which crosses the state's crown and ends at Jones Gap State Park. See Details
Whiteside Mountain National Recreation Trail Whiteside Mountain National Recreation Trail is a pet-friendly hike in Nantahala National Forest. The hike is nearly 2 miles long and will take you to beautiful wildflowers along the way. Dogs are welcome on the trail, as long as they are cleaned up after and remain on a leash. See Details