Day Hike L: NC 98 to Rolling View Recreation Area

Rambling to Rolling View

Distance: 3.3 miles

  • Difficulty: Moderate.
  • Camping: Yes. Rolling View Recreation Area at Falls Lake. Reservations: 1-877-7-CAMP-NC (722-6762) or go here. $7 per night.
  • Land managers: N.C. Division of Parks and Recreation, N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Note: Some or all of this trail is on game lands and hunting is allowed. Learn about local hunting seasons here.
  • Volunteer Task Force Leader: Jeff Brewer, jdbrewer104@gmail.com.
  • Piggyback trail: No.
  • Connecting trails: Feeder trails to lake.
  • Falls Lake MST Section No.: 13.
  • Trailhead/Access: Rolling View Recreation Area and NC 98. Click on map below for specifics.

Hiking the MST at daybreak.

The prospect of camping adds the dimension of backpacking to this stretch of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail. The Rolling View campground is among the nicest in the region, with sites well-separated in a rolling, forested tract that reaches down to the water. There are 35 tent sites and another 82 campsites with full electric and water hook-ups, a quiet respite compared to some of the significantly larger campgrounds found in state recreation areas. This campground may only open during warm weather months; call ahead before heading out.

This is one of the more remote stretches of the MST along Falls Lake, spending some time along the lake, some time exploring the young woodlands that are replacing land farmed as recently as 30 years ago. Part of this stretch is on game lands, so check on local hunting seasons before heading out. (You’re safe between Memorial Day and Labor Day, otherwise check here before hitting the trail.)

Geology Highlights: Along this trail section, look for examples of conglomerate (a sedimentary rock containing pieces of older rocks) and diabase (a hard, dark fine-grained igneous rock like that of the ocean floor).

For detailed hiking directions and parking information, download the Segment 10 guide from our Trail Guides page, using the “Primary Trailheads” section to pinpoint the location. You can also visualize the route on our interactive map.