Looking for a great trail in Grandfather Mountain State Park, North Carolina? AllTrails has 13 great hiking trails, dogs leash trails, forest trails and more, with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers, and nature lovers like you. Gearing up for a challenge? There are 7 hard trails in Grandfather Mountain State Park ranging from 3.5 to 10.7 miles and from 3,897 to 5,918 feet above sea level. Start checking them out and you'll be out on the trail in no time!


dogs on leash



wild flowers


bird watching

nature trips



Grandfather Mountain's stone profile faces have long gazed out over the ancient Appalachians, earning the acclimation of explorers and botanists alike as the apex of the Blue Ridge in granduer and ecological diversity. Towering nearly a vertical mile over the Piedmont, Grandfather has been recognized for centuries as a sentinel summit. In 1794, the mountain's dramatic views convinced the Botanist Andre Michaux that he'd climbed "the highest peak in all North America." From alpine-like vegetation and vistas on the highest peaks, to cascading streams far down in the foothills, more than a dozen distinct ecological zones stretch across the landscape. Seventy-plus species of rare, threatened and endangered plants and animals populate this rugged mountain, making it one of the East's most significant peaks; a United Nations International Biosphere Reserve. The park is known for some of the South's most severe weather and challenging hiking trails. Be prepared—at times, hikers climb ladders up cliffs. Nature lovers and hikers alike find Grandfather Mountain to be a special, indeed globally significant place to encounter the outdoors.

Tough trail but made it in the end with my little puppy. We both loved it.

8 days ago

First off this trail is wicked! I would not advise bring a dog! I brought mine that is 35 pounds and I had to carry her up and down some rock scrambles and ladders with the help of a friend. Being an avid hiker my friend and I thought 10 miles and back, no problem. Wrong! It took us 4.5 hours to get to the end of the trail and then we had a hitch a ride back because of daylight and the butt whipping. All that being said it was beautiful and very challenging! We definitely will go back, but with out Tilly

trail running
10 days ago

Ran/ hiked this with some bud

I absolutely love coming here, the only problem is that it’s $20 to get in. In my opinion it’s just a little overpriced. But the view is amazing.

AWESOME! My favorite so far.

This is NOT an Easy Trail! Super fun though. I would recommend this to anyone who is looking for a moderately difficult hike with epic views that they can complete in an hour or less. Some balance is required, and the elevation changes regularly so be prepared for the Stairmaster 3000. Have fun!!!

Hiked trail on February 26th all the way to the peak. Trail was as advertised, very demanding over the last 1.7 miles. However, had a beautiful relatively warm weather day. Very little mud, mostly dry, except for ice on some of the very upper areas. On the way down aprox 2.3 miles from trail head and my car, I slipped on a muddy section and severely injured my ankle (subsequently found out it was broken). After attempting to continue hiking down, I realized I needed assistance. I called 911 at about 4:00 pm. The first to arrive was rangers from the North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation, followed by EMTs and Volenteers from the Linville Volunteer Fire Department. All told, at one time I had 13 people from both organizations providing assistance. They ended carring me out to a waiting ambulance on a stretcher . Six people at a time carrying me in shifts on a very narrow trail with little room. Everyone associated with both organizations were extremely professional and caring. cannot thank them enough. If you hike this trail and ever need help, it is great to know just what type of exceptional rescue services are available.

very well taken care of trail...be careful of the mud after it rains. the parking lot and bathrooms look new and well taken care of. you can here traffic from 105 for about the first 3/4 of a mile but after that it's you and nature. I only hiked to the first lookout and back but it was quite pleasent non the less.

Great hike. Very tough closer to Calloway Gap. If you’re going to this hike before spring, do it early in the morning before the afternoon thaw.

1 month ago

Still closed 2/14/19

Really enjoyed this trail. It is muddy from the freeze and thaw. You can avoid a lot of the mud if you hike while the ground is frozen. When it warms up in the afternoon it turns to mud. This trail isn’t difficult but you should be in pretty good shape. Definitely strenuous. The views at the top are amazing and worth all the effort.

Super Dope

washed out
1 month ago

This trail is not well kept at all. Unless you want to be covered in mud and constantly fight to keep from slipping definitely do not go after heavy rainfall. You can also hear the traffic from 105 for the first 2 miles. Was honestly disappointed in the hike.

I took my favorite photo of all times at Grandfather Mnt. But the fee is pricy. To get into the area you have to pay 20 per person. Which is too much for everything. I get the fee but I think it should be a little cheaper. A nice drive up to the bridge is full of deer and beautiful views of surrounding mountain ranges.

Went in February. 50 degree day in Boone but the trail was iced over just past Profile View where I turned back. First third was really muddy. Really enjoyed it, and will be back this summer to make it to Grandfather trail and Calloway Peak.

1 month ago

good hike or backpack to the top and camp overnight like we did. better be in good shape to hike this one, nice vertical ascends, some narrow areas plus a few wet areas. take emergency supplies with you if your just hiking, plenty of water, maybe some light first aid. there was only one problem we didn't have enough time to hike more. this is absolutely beautiful you have to see it for yourself. get out and enjoy our state and national parks. we are headed to Colorado next then back to the Blue Ridge and Smokey Mountains.

Very challenging trail. I absolutely love it! It has beautiful scenery. Totally worth the hike.


I agree with Olivia. If you are only coming here for the bridge, it won’t justify the $20 per person price tag.
The views were enjoyable but most of the park was closed in winter. Can’t do harder trails, can’t see the bears, can’t go past the bridge.
I would definitely come back to summit Grandfather Mountain.
Overall, a “Decent Outing” with great views, but hardly a hike or trail.

Hiked this yesterday (December 19)! would recommend going at a different time than my group did if you have inexperienced members! One of my friends nearly took a plunge of some icy rocks. Snow also made it difficult to see crevices between rocks you could easily break your ankle in!! My group hiked up profile trail to Calloway peak, then took grandfather trail to the parking lot and hitchhiked back to the car. The views and adventure were absolutely stunning, but the trek is certainly not for the out of shape or faint of heart! One of the best trails I’ve hiked!

Great hike! It was muddy, icy, and had snow so prepare accordingly. We didn’t quite make it to the end due to time restraints. I definitely want to go back to get to Calloway peak!

This was an incredible hike!! With the new (super nice) parking area, this trail is now over 8 miles. All the water crossing were high, We made it to Shanty Springs in knee deep snow and had to turn around due to trail conditions. Super slippery at the top. Can’t wait to go back when the snow has melted and finish up the last .4 miles!

This trail is one of my favorite trails in N.C. It has beautiful water features in the first section of the trail and stunning views from the top but do not expect this hike to be easy because it is a burner, especially towards the top. I have two dogs that I’m glad stayed at home for this one since it is, in some sections, very technical as there are ladders and exposed rock faces where a slip or loss of balance could result in injury to you or your dogs. Also, I would caution anyone who is hiking this in winter weather to be prepared with the right equipment.
I hiked to Calloway Peak and then went over to Raven Rocks before heading back down. Spend some time at the top because the views are awesome. All in all I hiked a little over 10 miles in about 5.5 hours according to the AllTrails app.

Was apprehensive but the most fun and rewRding trail. Beautiful views. Very technical. Must be comfortable with heights and climbing ladders

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