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    Terry Shore reviewed China Creek Trail

    over 1 year ago

    This trail starts at the kiosk on Laurel Lane across the road from the sign for the equestrian center in Blowing Rock. Although in existence for many years, the trail has been restored and improved through a partnership between The Conservation Trust for North Carolina and the Youth Conservation Corps. Now well groomed and maintained, the trail is narrow and literally carved out of the hillside with switchbacks and steep dropoffs along most of its length; so be careful. No panoramic vistas here, but the local flora and many rock outcrops along the way make this an interesting hike. At GPS coords N36.124 W81.696 another trail comes in from the right which goes back to the US 221 rest area, although it is not as well maintained. Either way back up will be strenuous. If you continue on the China Creek trail (left at this junction) you will meet fire road 4071 in about half a mile, and according to the trailhead kiosk, continuing on another half-mile will bring you to Thunderhole falls, although I never actually found that. My GPS track stops at FR4071. The trail is not marked and there is no signage, but it is well defined and blazes really are not needed. What is not obvious is where the trail continues on at FR4017. It's directly across the road, but you will have to look for it. Note: Alltrails calculated an elevation "gain" of 45 feet from the GPX file - very wrong. Actual elevation change by GPS is 1688 feet from trailhead to FR4071.

    Terry Shore updated China Creek Trail

    over 1 year ago

    Terry Shore reviewed Moores Knob Trail

    about 3 years ago

    Terry Shore completed Moores Knob Trail

    about 3 years ago

    Terry Shore reviewed Cooks Wall Trail

    about 3 years ago

    Terry Shore completed Cook's Wall Trail

    about 3 years ago

    Terry Shore reviewed Wolf Rock Loop Trail

    about 3 years ago

    Terry Shore completed Wolf Rock Loop Trail

    about 3 years ago

    Terry Shore reviewed Hanging Rock Trail

    about 3 years ago

    Terry Shore completed Hanging Rock Trail

    about 3 years ago

    Terry Shore reviewed Allegheny Trail

    about 3 years ago

    I had previously hiked about 6 miles of this trail in Pocahontas County, from NRAO at Green Bank WV south to Cass. This time I went the other way, north to Durbin. Because we were staying with friends in Green Bank, I started from the National Radio Astronomy Observatory; but be aware - from the visitor center at NRAO, it's a 3 mile walk through the observatory just to reach the trail. (And because the observatory has real, operating radio telescopes, no transmitting devices are allowed. They request no personal electronics of any kind, including cell phones. But a purely receiving GPS is probably OK.) After walking up Slavin Hollow Road and reaching the trail on Little Mountain at the boundary of the observatory, I turned north and followed the yellow blazes toward Durbin. It appeared that recent trail maintenance had been done; there was evidence of a pack animal, and the blazes were new and bright. All in all, this was a beautiful trail - well blazed, little underbrush, with only a few deadfalls to walk around. Not easy though. The path crosses about every ridge between Green Bank and Durbin, so a lot of up and down. Strenuous climbs (for me) in many places. At one stream - Laurel Run I think - the trail crossed at a point too deep for my boots, so I had to detour upstream about 100 feet to find some stepping stones. At about mile 10 or 12, the trail takes a sharp turn to the left off the forest service road. I missed it and had to back track about a quarter-mile after realizing I wasn't seeing blazes any more. (If you're starting at Durbin, that won't be a problem since you'll come out of the woods onto the service road.) My GPS recorded a little over 14 miles (including the initial 3 miles). It was probably at least 15, allowing for all the altitude changes. I grossly underestimated the distance and overestimated my ability. What I thought would be about a 6 hour hike actually took 9 hours, and I made it out only about an hour before dark. However, it was a beautiful, serene trip. Well worth the effort. My thanks to the West Virginia Scenic Trails Association for their good work.

    Terry Shore completed Allegheny Mountain Trail

    about 3 years ago

    Terry Shore followed John Terry

    over 4 years ago