dogs on leash
The Pisgah National Forest is a land of mile-high peaks, cascading waterfalls, and heavily forested slopes. Comprised of over 500,000 acres, the Pisgah is primarily a hardwood forest with whitewater rivers, waterfalls and hundreds of miles of trails. This national forest is home of the first tract of land purchased under the Weeks Act of 1911 which led to the creation of the national forests in the eastern United States. It is also home of the first school of forestry in the United States, now preserved at the Cradle of Forestry in America historic site, and boasts two of the first designated wilderness areas in the east. The Pisgah, Grandfather and Appalachian Ranger Districts are scattered along the eastern edge of the mountains of western North Carolina and offer visitors a variety of opportunities for outdoor recreation and enjoying the natural beauty of the mountains.
There truly just aren't adequate words to describe this place. The drive up is not bad at all, contrary to many reviewers. You are in the mountains, mind you, so yes it is a very windy and bumpy road with deep pot holes, a true mountain road- and your car will get very dusty/dirty. But when you park and start the trek to the top of the bald, you are welcomed with second-to-none views of mountainscapes. It's beyond breath-taking. We hike everywhere in the Smokies and middle TN, and this is by far the most rewarding view we've ever seen. When you sit at the top, it's pure silence, even with others there, it's an amazing absence of sound with no cars or motors; you will feel like you're truly in Heaven. Pictures and videos could never do it justice. Max Patch is a place you have to experience for yourself. Connect to the Appalachian Trail with the white blaze posts and hike along the side of the mountain, taking in the views. We are coming back in the Spring to camp here. A warm winter day would be the most ideal for viewing mountains, as they aren't as hazy with humidity. This is my new favorite place in the world.
Solid trail for a day hike, overnight or extended stay. We parked at the trailhead off of 215 and camped towards the end of the trail near a creek. Very easy trail with plenty of water access and nearby destinations, including Sam's Knob, Devils Courthouse, and Black Balsam Knob. If camping in this area, bear canisters are required.