Explore Asheville, NC - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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I love coming here in the winter and walking through the morning mist. No wildflowers, but I feel like I’m in LOTR. And not many people make it up here in early winter. If the visitors’ center is closed off, you can park at the picnic area.

Pretty easy hike without super steep slopes and views of the blue ridge mountains the whole way in the winter. You can see the valley and little houses. The lodge isn’t there anymore—burned down in 1926, but there’s a placard with a description of the lodge so you know you’ve made it.

Took the Lodge Trail around and picked up Mountains to Sea up to Wolf Den. Was raining and slick so skipped the last leg to Pinnacle Peak, which I did a few weeks ago. Trail in good shape with decent views along the way.

Well kept trail with many nice vistas.

Graybeard was a great hike but I am glad we completed the Big Piney Loop instead of the out and back to Graybeard. I recommend a visit to Walkers Knob for a nice vista view since we had already made the trek towards the top. We completed the loop in 5.5 hours and that included a lunch break. Our party consisted of a 9 and 10 year old plus our dog (on leash). The Seven Sisters trail was remote and challenging. No issues with navigating the trails all day. If you are up for the hike to Graybeard, then I recommend the adventure of completing the Loop.

This will go down as one of my favorite little hikes of all time. At first, we were bummed at the complete cloud cover. As we made our way to the top, the wind was gusting and the trees were dusted with white. It was gorgeous! We checked out the observation area at Mt. Mitchell before heading out on to Balsam. It was iced over at points, but oh so beautiful! It’s a short loop and you’ll wish it went on much longer. Don’t miss this one.

20 days ago

the trail is nice. if you need to exercise hike to the greybeards summit otherwise Walker's knob on the way is a lot better view than the greybeards summit.

i think the review below is pretty accurate.

https://www.hikewnc.info/besthikes/montreat/graybeard-mountain

hiking
22 days ago

Loved it! A bit of a challenge with the leaves on the ground and the past rains make the trail a bit slippery!

Great hike -nice mix of several rock overlooks, small waterfall and rugged hiking in the backhalf. BUT THIS HIKE IS A FAIR AMOUNT LONGER. My Strava said 12.5 miles. Also, backhalf (big piney ridge trail) is not for novice hikers as trail is not as well worn, although probably partly due to fact was fall with plenty of leaves down camouflaging trail.

Awesome trail. We loved the terrain. Beautiful views.

Lovely easy trail! We love the scenery along this trail. The trees remind us of a medieval forest with layers of rich green lichen and boulders with icicles hanging in places. The fir, cedars, & spruce trees were wind blown and frozen with ice & snow. I wish I had my camera!!!The first time we’ve been on this trail in November. .It wasn’t the trail we intended to hike today but someone else had other plans for us! We met three worn out young men and a beautiful dog named Mia.. They had camped out near the base of Black Mt/Mt Mitchell trail and hiked to the top this morning.. We met them as they were making the long trek down the mountain. They were tired, the trail was slippery, and darkness would be on them before they finished.. We offered them a ride and made four new friends. Sort of sad to drop them off at the camp ground. They reminded us of our sons. Good luck fellas!!

Fun trail with great panoramic views! I do feel you can get similar, awesome views simply driving along Blue Ridge and utilizing the overlooks, however this trail offers up to experience both sides of the ridge at once. BE CAREFUL when it's windy out!

This trail is easy to moderate depending on your fitness level and weather conditions. We went the day after raining and there were still plenty of puddles and mud. It was also cloudy so the views weren’t all there. Every once in a while the clouds would separate and we would see some goodness, but limited. Made for a great morning. Took my wife and I 3 hours starting with Black Balsalm, then to Tennent, ending with the long leg back to the car. We stopped for many pictures and rested for about 20 min at Tennent to eat lunch.
It is still worth the hike and definitely the drive along Blue Ridge Pkwy!

Views were amazing. Challenging trail but worth it.

Exceptional views. Try to go while it is dry or be prepared for some muddy, wet areas for a long stretches on the bottom Ivestor Gap portion.

Hiked in early November just after two days of rain. Amazing views. Will return in spring.

Great short hike, but I would not rate it as easy. You are still hiking up a mountain. Good for most skill levels, but if you are out of shape you will struggle a bit.

One of my favorite trails. It is a bald, so you have beautiful unobstructed views. It is easy and short enough to bring a great picnic and set up on a rock outcrop. There are two other balds a short hike from the first of you want some extra adventure.

hiking
1 month ago

This trail was nice! There were a lot of rocks which made it more difficult but it wasn’t the worst rocky hike I’ve ever done. When we went it was extremely foggy and couldn’t see a whole lot.... however we did hike the additional 3.6 miles to Douglas Falls and it was beautiful!

A wonderful short trail - should take around two hours depending on if you stop to admire the old lodge. Parking is very limited with about 4-5 spots right by the trailhead and then limited roadside parking a short walk away. That said, I’ve never had an issue finding space if I’m determined to hike the trail.

Most of the trail is actually part of the Mountains to Sea Trail and is blazed white. The trail is fairly straightforward until you reach Rattlesnake Lodge. You’ll find lots of little side trails - most lead to smaller ruins or backpacking campgrounds.

If you stay the course on the white trail through the first part of the lodge, you’ll find additional ruins. A blue blazed path will be to your right going downhill right before these ruins. If you continue straight you’ll see two additional parts of the lodge. Running between them is another blue blazed path on the left going uphill and a white blazed path on the right.

If you take either of these paths you’ll complete the loop as it is on the map. I usually take the blue path first as it’s quite steep and harder to climb down than up, then make sure to go right when it meets the white trail. I highly recommend doing the loop as there are more ruins and lovely streams.

Overall the old lodge is fascinating to see and the hike is short & sweet. The trails are very well marked and maintained. A great way to spend a morning or afternoon.

Nice spot to stop at if you want to stretch your legs and enjoy a wonderful view.

Beautiful hike and well worth it to see the waterfall.

Great views not a terrible hike good camping areas!

This was definitely a moderate hike with some pretty steep inclines and rocks at parts of it. The view is absolutely worth it!! The leaves look beautiful from the top and there’s an opportunity to get some really good panoramic pictures!

hiking
1 month ago

Spectacular at sunrise! Gorgeous views st the top and lovely goi g up and down. It’s an easy hike but if you’re trying to catch the sunrise, allow enough time to make the short trek to the top since it’s so steep.

hiking
1 month ago

The beginning is a little rough with walking through large creek bed like rocks and tree roots. After crossing the creek/river 3 times,The hike gets easier after the first 1.5 miles. The water falls are beautiful. The opening for the over look Down into town was really neat. I’m sure it was due to the rain, parts of it were really muddy.But all in all it’s a good hike in God’s nature.

We went on a Friday and the parking lot was full but most people stop at the lower falls. There was a lot of water on the trail so it was a little slippery at some points but the views were well worth it!

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