Day Hike L: NC 98 to Rollingview Recreation Area

Rambling to Rollingview

Distance: 3.2 miles

  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Camping: Yes. Rollingview Recreation Area at Falls Lake. Reservations: 1-877-7-CAMP-NC (722-6762) or go here.
  • 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 gamelands and hunting is allowed. Learn about local hunting seasons here.
  • Volunteer Task Force Leader: Jeff Brewer,
  • Piggyback trail: No
  • Connecting trails: Feeder trails to lake
  • Falls Lake MST Section Nos.: 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 Rollingview campground is among the nicest in the region, with sites well-separated in a rolling, forest 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 gamelands, 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).

Day Hike L Map

Click on the link below the Google map to open it up in a larger version which includes definition of the map symbols, hiking notes, and an interactive option for driving to the trailheads.

View MST / Falls Lake / Section 11 in a larger map


Finding Your Way

Thanks to Mark Edelstein for these detailed hiking directions.

Finding Your Way (east » west) Cumulative Mileage Mileage Between Points
Trailhead: NC 98 between NC 50 and Southview Road 0.0 0.0
Leave the cleared area to enter the woods. Cross a creek on a footbridge and soon turn R. 0.2 0.2
Cross an old roadbed. 0.5 0.3
Go through a wet area, the result of beaver activity, on a series of boardwalks. 0.7 0.2
Cross a feeder creek. 0.8 0.1
Cross under power lines. 0.9 0.1
Cross an old roadbed. 1.1 0.2
Cross a roadbed by an open area. 1.2 0.1
Cross a creek bed and soon junction with a wide roadbed. Turn R to walk along it and turn L to reenter the woods. 1.6 0.4
Use a footbridge to cross a wide creek. 1.8 0.2
After walking along an old roadbed by the lake, R, turn L off it to skirt the shoreline. Soon reach the state park boundary (no hunting). 2.2 0.4
Cross another open roadbed. 2.4 0.2

Junction with a blue-blazed trail, L, to a hiker’s parking area (Soon reach a pond and turn L to curve around it -> at 0.2. mi. reach a road, cross it and turn L to walk along a path by the edge of the woods -> at 0.3 mi reach the lot).

2.8 0.4
Cross a creek bed and then a footbridge. 2.9 0.1
The remains of an auto can be seen to the L. 3.1 0.2

Baptist Road by the gated entrance, R, to the Rolling View recreation area/campground.

3.2 0.1