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There are a few places in the world that still stand apart from the ordinary. Rising more than a mile high, surrounded by the gentle mist of low-hanging clouds, Mount Mitchell State Park is one of these extraordinary places. In the crest of the timeworn Black Mountains lies the summit of Mount Mitchell, the highest point east of the Mississippi. For those who ascend this mighty peak, what looms in the horizon is a feast for the eyesbreathtaking views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, rolling ridges and fertile valleys. Forested and forever misty, 1,946-acre Mount Mitchell State Park will provide you with some of the most tranquil moments you'll ever experience.

I’ve never hiked the entire black mountain crest trail but this review is for Ben Clark. What an incredible story man, but I can’t help but laugh because I’m the guy on the atv ! I offered to help you guys out but you didn’t really seem like you knew where you were going or where you came from. I thought you were just some college kids from cattail creek hiking up to the mine so we never thought anything of it. You guys were on the old mining roads and most of them aren’t on google maps. Don’t go by just what you saw though man the views are amazing up there and I don’t have any idea how you ran out of water because it’s everywhere lol. We’ve got property at the base of the mountain so I know the area pretty well. Shoot me an email if you want more info on how to get around without getting lost. Sorry y’all had to had to suffer but when we came back down we never passed you so we went on to the house.

PS: I have to rate the trail so I’m going with 5 Stars. I’ll hike it someday but I don’t live there and my time is always limited. That area has become my favorite place on earth and I intend to live there permanently one day.

Great challenging hike, but not too many views until the top... but the views at the top make it all worth it, beautiful! Great workout too. Doing this one in February made the last 2 miles slow and difficult navigating thru the slick ice, but definitely able to figure it out using higher ground next to the trail.

Great hike lots of snow. It took me 5 hours but I got a lot of GoPro footage back tracking. Must do hike

Do not underestimate the difficulty of this trail. First of all, if you are climbing from Bowlens Creek, the first 4.5 miles is the EASIEST climbing portion of the trail. For some people to say that the first 4.5 miles is the hardest, they obviously didn’t complete the entire trail. The AllTrails app is incorrect, it is more like 12.5 miles to Mount Mitchell from Bowlens Creek. We completed our hike in January of 2018 and the trail was very icy, making it very difficult to climb the rock scrambling portions of the trail. It really doesn’t get difficult until you start making your approach to Winter Star Mountain. From Winter Star Mountain to Mount Mitchell is some of the most strenuous hiking that I have done considering the iciness of the trail. There is a portion on Big Tom were there are ropes attached to two separate angled rock faces to assist in your scramble up the rock. I would recommend doing this trail in the summer when you do not have to worry about ice. Also, DO NOT expect to camp at Mount Mitchell in the winter. The campground is closed during winter months and they do not allow camping. DO NOT take on this trail unless you are a well prepared, experienced backpacker. We spoke to the park ranger and he said they are constantly rescuing unprepared, inexperienced hikers because they bite off more than they can chew. Luckily we were well prepared and were able to finish.

I have now hiked this trail 28 times. Looking forward to my 29th and 30th as my goal was 30. It is a good workout and there are two major water sources along the way. The trail is well maintained. You won't find many decent views of the surrounding mountains or the valley below.The Higgins Bald Trail has a waterfall but it is only decent after a heavy rainfall.

hiking
25 days ago

done in October, one of my favorite hikes!

trail running
28 days ago

High Peaks does a great job maintaining this trail, and the re-route is well done. There are a lot of rocks and roots, as is customary for the area. Took the Higgins Bald trail to loop on the way back and the trail is much more runnable than the Mitchell Trail. There was considerable ice today (January 21), so was not able to complete the last switchback (did not have poles or spikes/crampons,) so will have to re-try once the ice melts.

Wonderfully difficult climb to one of the best trails in western North Carolina!!!!

definitely a challenging hike with lots of elevation. went in mid January and there was a lot of ice so be prepared to take some time navigating certain sections. view at the top is awesome, but there isn't really anything to see on hike up.

walking
1 month ago

It’s a workout. You’ll leave tired. Pretty area.

gorgeous and really hard loop!

This trail is so worth your time!! If you don’t look carefully you can miss the start. I recommend starting right as you get onto the NPS service road just to the right about 30 feet onto the road. It’s a stiff hike up but really cool scenery. 95% of the entire hike is woods with one side of the loop being completely different from the other. Then as you get to the top it’s like the entire world opens up with absolutely stunning views. I’m only more upset I forgot to hit stop on the recording of my hike with pictures so that didn’t record. The trail is still relatively easy to follow.

backpacking
2 months ago

We backpacked this trail on Memorial Day weekend, which was a mistake because it was SO CROWDED. Still worth it, though. It was amazing to notice how the foliage changed with the elevation. The top reminded me of hiking in Maine. It was also a great feeling to emerge from the wooded trail in our hiking boots to see how many people had driven to the top. I think we impressed the drivers ;)
I'd love to go back when it's not a holiday weekend. You could do this whole thing in one day, if you get there early. If you're going to backpack (which I'd recommend instead of rushing it in one day), there's perfect camping on Commissary Hill, which is about 2/3 of the way to the top.

trail running
2 months ago

As an east coaster who spent a good amount of time running out west, this is as close as it gets. 5 mile slog with 3k+ of vert. Trail is fairly technical, good amount of leaves covering up the rocks and roots, and plenty of step-ups in the last mile. You can refill bottles at the top during the in season (taps were turned off as of early Dec), though you do pass a few good quality springs on the way. View at the top is well worthwhile!

hiking
2 months ago

Did two weeks ago. Plenty of roots and rocks and a little tougher than I expected. Great views and was lucky not a lot of drive ups so had peak almost to myself.

hiking
2 months ago

Two friends and I did this trail + Mount Craig early November. A solid and fun trail. We had lots of fog driving to and from the mountain but was treated with beautiful fall leave.

I did this trail today under clear skies and 40-45 degree temperature. It’s a very solid trail and the walkways are well blazed. Plenty of elevation spikes as well as rocky sections going up or down, depending on the direction you go. Once on the Buncombe Horse stretch, there are multiple patches of standing water that haven’t drained so be prepared to hop a little. As far as I saw, these trails don’t seem to be trafficked all that much.

backpacking
2 months ago

A moderate hike!

Just an average hike, in my opinion. There was a nice little stream near the top, but other than that it was just another walk in the woods (typical Eastern hike) but without any great overlooks.
It is well marked and probably better in the winter when there are no leaves.
We did detour initially to a waterfall near the campground and that was pretty cool.

hiking
2 months ago

This trail for me is hard . It has good views, I hiked up Colbert’s creek to deep gap on the crest then off the cattail creek side . Great hike .

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