Hemlock Falls is a 15’cascade, in Moccasin Creek State Park on Lake Burton. The trail is one of Rabun County’ most scenic and features two pretty cascades falling into Moccasin Creek.
Directions: From Clayton take Hwy 76 east 11 miles. Turn left on GA 197 and go 3.7 miles to the turnoff for Hemlock Falls Trailhead. From the trailhead, follow the trail about one mile up the left side of the creek, crossing the creek on a wooden bridge shortly before reaching the falls.
The road to the trail begins just south of the entrance to Moccasin Creek State Park. Wear your wet hiking shoes for this one. There are two ways to hike this trail, and both have benefits. You can park your car at Moccasin Creek State Park and walk, or you can drive to the trailhead, down a bumpy, narrow, poorly maintained dirt road. Walking from the state park adds about 2 miles to the hike, which doesn’t add much to the difficulty.
We walked this path last in May, ’97, and it is a good hike. Although frequently hidden by the brush, the soothing gurgle of the river is always nearby. The path has evolved from an old roadbed to a series of hiker created paths around the wetter parts of the road. The path rises subtly, at times quite high from the creek leaving the hiker wondering how they got so far up. During the bare of winter another falls is visible from this trace. The wet hiking shoes comment is a caution because a number of side rivulets cross the path making shoes wet, and although we consider the path safe, this may pose a minor problem for less experienced hikers. About a mile down the treadway a wooden bridge crosses the river and you continue the final few feet on the other side of the river. Hemlock Falls are pretty, and were full flowing.