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Hike to the Indian Caves

Bryson City, North Carolina



1.4 miles

Elevation Gain

0 ft

Route Type



Added by Spencer Marfing

Tucked away in the woods along the Nantahala River is a cave system known as the Indian Caves. The Cherokee are said to have hidden in these caves during the Trail of Tears. The spot is easily accessible and perfect for a quick adventure that provides ample shade on a hot sunny day.

Across the road from Endless River Adventures, there's a small parking area next to a footbridge. Park there and walk across the footbridge until you meet the railroad tracks. 

These tracks are part of the Great Smoky Mountain Railroad. The train operates from March-October and passes through this area between the hours of 11AM-3PM, so be careful! 

Turn left on the tracks and walk for 0.7 miles. On the left, you will see some bigger rocks that I use as a trail marker. Once there, to the right there's a small footpath going back into the woods. Follow the path and very quickly you will see the caves. 

**Access from the river**

If you choose to do so, the caves are also accessible from the river if you're paddling. After passing Pizza by the River, about 200-250 yards downstream there's a small gravel area river left. You'll see the small take-out area and a trail leading up the hill. Park your boat there and follow the trail to the caves. 

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Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!


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