The trail was open this past weekend with plenty of hikers (I could see the tree that was freshly cut, by the side of the road that the previous reviewer mentioned). what a great hike!

The drive to this trail is beautiful in and of itself, riding along a creek and rapids. We hiked Hotel to AT to the top of Cole Mountain and back via AT. Steady incline, multiple switchbacks and easy to follow path. This day brought rain and fog so we didn’t get the 360 views as noted for this trail, but just as breathtaking. Seeing trees unfold in a field of fog had an awesome mystic feel.

This my favorite hike in Va, but I went yesterday and a tree is completely blocking the road to get to the trailhead! About 5 mi from the start. Unless you want to hike an additional 5 mi on a gravel road, you can’t access the trails for the time being. Hopefully they will fix soon, but it’s super removed and I hardly ever run into people, so who knows how long it will take someone to notice!

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike! Unfortunately very foggy yesterday at the top but still an excellent trail. Well maintained and not too difficult. Dog loved it, he’s still asleep. Went up the right side and down the other. Based on my experience, it would be a slightly easier hike going up the left side. Definitely going to do this one again.

hiking
1 month ago

This is the second time we have done this hike and it is amazing. A year and a half ago there was still much burn evidence. Today it was much recovered. We hike it clockwise and find that to be best and the easiest part is at the end. The woods are just beautiful, having a mystical quality. The summit is about midway through the hike. Last time we were rewarded with the most stunning views we have seen on a hike. Today, the summit was in a cloud and we could see no views. Even so, it was a perfect day for a hike and all the rain this year added waterfalls and rushing water to the creek toward the end. Last time we took our dog and that was great, too.

Great hike!! Beautiful and a little rocky at parts but easy enough trails, as we had two children (3 and 7) with us. The 360-degree views from the summit were, by far, the most beautiful I’ve seen. A Little Rock climbing to actually get up/out onto the rocks at the summit. Pleasant surprise to find a creek at the end.... another nice photo opportunity and nice resting spot to splash around!!

You will not find better views off the AT. The most underrated hike out there. Love love love.

One of my favorite places along the AT.

What a great spot. We sort of “cheated” as we didn’t have a lot of time and simply hiked an out and back up the Appalachian Trail to Cole Mountain and back. Took maybe 25 minutes heading up, 20 back down. For the minimal effort, you can’t beat the views. Flies were pretty bad at the top, but below the tree line were not an issue. The last 1.5 miles driving to the trail is on a gravel road...road wasn’t in bad shape but there were a couple of rough spots to be mindful of. We plan to come back in the fall to hike the entire loop and enjoy the sweeping views, minus the flies!

hiking
4 months ago

We did this trail on accident, intending to do Cole Mountain but weren’t disappointed. There is a steady incline towards the end which can get challenging but nothing too hard. We are only able to see the east overlook when we reached the summit because a rude family was taking up the entire west overlook and wouldn’t clear the entrance for us to go up and see. We went on a Saturday at 11 am and only passed them and 1 other group.

*note, it says this trail features a river but we never saw or passed that.

I love this trail, depending on the time of year, the path is lined with rodadendra, mountain lorel and blueberries.

hiking
5 months ago

Went on a Monday in early June and didn’t see a single person. It was amazing. My girlfriend and I took the reverse route, clockwise around the loop which I would recommend as it gets a longer harder hike out of the way first.

Incredible pink/purple flowers in full bloom at certain points and so much incredible green everywhere.

The hike is very enjoyable, the perfect mix of leisurely strolling and some moderate climbs. Took us about 1hr45 to get to the summit and 1hr10 to get back to the car.

Both summits have amazing views but the west facing summit is something special. The rocks look great and it’s almost as if there’s a man made flat rock there just for people to sit and have lunch. One of the most enjoyable hikes I’ve done in this area.

The gravel track leading to the trailhead is kinda rough so be prepared to drive very slow for a few miles if you have a normal car.

Also, I have read a lot about a fire affecting the blaze markers - this has clearly since been rectified as I felt the trail was incredibly maintained. Almost too easy!

I will def be back and want to try and do it overnight!

We hiked the Hotel trail first, and then returned via Cole mountain. This is a really enjoyable hike. It took us about 3 hours. There are parts that seem like they should be in a movie: lots of very green ferns on the forest floor, under a canopy of trees. There are excellent camping spots, especially in the meadow under big oaks on the Hotel trail. Wild blueberries are growing there, too. The views from Cole mountain are spectacular.

hiking
5 months ago

This was such a nice treat to hike! We decided Sunday morning to go hiking, found this one and couldn’t resist the views. Despite a large number of cars at the first parking area (passed “no motorized vehicles” sign), we continued down the road to a more secluded area (recommend SUV or truck, etc) where we parked. From there we decided to take the clockwise loop. We only passed 3 groups our whole time—also had overlooks to ourselves. We took our too dogs with us and they enjoyed it as much as we did! Highly recommend as a day trip or overnight.

This was a beautiful trail! We planned to do the trail clockwise, but a poor weather forecast forced us to reconsider our route. We went counterclockwise, starting on the AT & hit the summit in the afternoon so we wouldn’t miss the views due to the predicted rain/fog the next morning. Hiked down to Cow Camp Gap shelter via the Hotel Trail & camped near the shelter. Ended up coming back the same way, just so we could have a chance to see the views of the beautiful saddle/summit again!

Such a beautiful quiet trail. This is where I solo hiked for the first time and it is a hike I will never forget and find myself visiting at least once a year!

its was awesome beautiful opening my first hike ever

The summit has great views! I went clockwise on hotel trail. Took me 2 hours and 46 min. I have been holding down the couch a lot lately.

This was different than most of the trails in the mountains. You have a beautiful view at the top with a fantastic meadow. We took a husky and a Boston terrier which was an easy and enjoyable walk for both. It's a little steep going to the top but short lived and nothing to crazy. Just as an FYI, When you encounter the first Parking lot, that will be the one to take you straight to the top. The parking lot further down with take you on the hotel trails which is the camp and bottom part of cole mountain. The entrance to Mt. Pleasant will be there as well.

hiking
11 months ago

My all-time favorite hike in Virginia

hiking
11 months ago

Hiked the Old Hotel Trail in November after the leaf drop. Completely different than when everything is in bloom. Both times are a great time to hike it. Moderate 6 mile hike with great views all along the way. Windy at the top. One of our favorite hikes. We keep coming back.

hiking
Friday, October 20, 2017

Nice hike.when my dog and I did it we only saw one other backpacker with his daughters. Their very first backpacking hike. We went counterclockwise since they were heading in clockwise. Beautiful hike my setter was pointing unknown critters most of the way. Not a lot of water so pack in plenty. Beautiful views this was done mid October. Will go back with less foliage,

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Great trail and will be doing again. I did the trail clockwise and will do it the same way again. Puts you at the summit just past halfway. My trail recorded this trail at 5.2 miles but I noticed it did not record the summits. that adds another mile to the total distance.

hiking
Thursday, August 24, 2017

Beautiful day hike with my wife. Incredible views all around, even though it was muggy and hot. If you're carrying a pack this hike will get your blood pumping on a few of the switch backs, but nothing too crazy. Lots of wild flowers and jewel weed. Would love to come do this hike again in the fall.

hiking
Sunday, July 23, 2017

I absolutely love going to Mount pleasant! I've done the hike twice now! the second time seemed much harder but I think that's because the trail was much more overgrown than the previous. no matter how difficult, THIS HIKE IS WORTH IT! literally the BEST views in VA! Very Rocky, so be prepared for that

hiking
Wednesday, July 19, 2017

backpacking
Monday, June 26, 2017

Chose this as my girlfriends first overnight backpacking trip. Perfect distance and difficulty for someone right off the couch. Views were great on the east summit, picturesque camping site on west summit. We chose to go counter clockwise. Make a figure 8 loop with Cole/Cold Mountain trail for a great multi night outing.

hiking
Sunday, June 04, 2017

Great hike! The trail was well marked and well kept. The woods were beautiful and so was the summit. I definitely recommend it.

Monday, May 29, 2017

so beautiful!! even in the rain and fog. we clocked more than 6 miles. added an additional 1 to the east summit and back, so over 7 in total. The trail is very well marked...except for one spot where the fallen trees made it confusing. look forward to coming back!

hiking
Sunday, May 14, 2017

Gorgeous views from the bald! The pay off for as short of a hike from parking lot it is feels like cheating. Nice little taste of the AT. Free rustic camping area right off the trail. Went on a beautiful Saturday and only ran into a few other hikers.

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