Rabun Bald Trail via Hale Ridge Road is a 5.4 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Scaly Mountain, North Carolina that features a great forest setting and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, camping, and nature trips. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length5.4 miElevation gain2,139 ftRoute typeOut & back
Dogs on leashCampingHikingNature tripsrunningForestViewsBlowdownScramble
Description
Waypoints (0)

The trailhead marker is for Forest Service Trail #211 and starts with a set of stairs going up to the trail. It is about 5.5 miles from Warwoman Dell road turn off

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (79)
Photos (332)
Recordings (81)
Completed (145)
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Steven Sirmon
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Hiking
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Rachel Sadens
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HikingBlowdown

The reviews calling this one a loop are commenting on the wrong trail. This one is out and back and meant to be a challenge. You drive way passed the Bartram Trail on Hale Ridge Rd and have to take a right at the Holcombe Trailhead intersection to reach this trailhead. It is up on Google now as FS 211 but follow those directions and you can't miss it.there's an obvious hiker sign at the trailhead. There is currently a downed tree blocking Hale Ridge coming from Warwoman a good half mile from this trailhead. This road's condition in general currently is not ideal for a car. The best thing about this trail is that we saw no one the entire time. It was great to be alone in nature. It is a narrow trail and all the leaves, pine comes, and acorns added to the difficulty. There are some well timed flat breaks throughout the trail but the last mile to the top is definitely the SUCK. Poles are wise for this part, especially going down. Push through for the reward and rest at the top.

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Yasir Bhuiyan
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HikingGreat!Rocky
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Steph S
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarOctober 25, 2020
HikingGreat!Rocky

Okay, so I ended up at the Beegum Gap trailhead and spent around 4 hours trying to find the right one! Instead, take Bald Mountain Rd north and make a right onto Hale Ridge Road. Stay on there until it becomes a gravel road. Past the Bartram trailhead and FS 696, Hale Ridge forks. The right turn (at Holcomb Creek Trailhead) has a sign right now saying it is not a thru-road. Turn there. The trailhead is marked with a hiking symbol about halfway on the bend between Addie and Bailey Branch. Due to the road closure, the trailhead is NOT accessible from the Warwoman turnoff. Edit: submitted a marker to GMaps as "Forest Service Trail #211" so hopefully no one else wastes a day trying to find it! I hiked this in the rain, which was forecasted to clear up and didn't, but still a worthwhile hike! The first 3/4 is a steep uphill through the woods. Absolutely gorgeous, but very narrow in spots. The rocky bit was slippery, but not as hard as other reviews led me to believe. I definitely expected a bit more of a challenge, but I thoroughly enjoyed the hike regardless. Logged at 6.5mi. As a bonus, the Holcomb Creek trailhead is just down the road and only about a mile long, so definitely check that out too!

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Ryan Smith
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarOctober 24, 2020
Hiking

We went clockwise on the loop and it was a VERY strenuous hike on the first half, but absolutely worth it! Excellent views of two waterfalls near the beginning (one is technically behind some fallen trees and on a damaged platform. The view at Rabun Bald is incredible. Took us exactly 6 hours to complete.

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Susanne Keller
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BackpackingRockyScramble

Map direction to trail head incorrect. They are actually directions to the Beegum to Rabun bald trail head so take care. Trailhead is labeled FS #211 with white blaze. Using a 1-10 sacle for steepness, 1st 3rd of trail is a 7.5. 2nd 3rd 2-3 and last 3rd is a rocky 8.5. I would call this a workout hike. Spent the night on top at one of 3 or 4 campsites and had great sunset, high winds, dense fog in the middle of the night (had to do my thing at about 1am) and nice sunrise. Really enjoyed the variability. If you need water the only place on the way is about half way at a good sized creek. After that dry as a bone!

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King Smith
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarOctober 18, 2020
Hiking

We did it backwards, giving us a hard, but short climb, then an easy but lengthened finish

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Brian S. Volz
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Hiking
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Ian Slack
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Hiking
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Deuk Lee
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HikingBugsOver grown

You have to drive on a gravel road for quite some time before reaching to the trailhead. Getting there on a regular sedan-like vehicle seems doable but a higher clearance all wheel drive vehicle would make the drive much safer and comfortable. There is enough parallel parking for 3-4 cars at the trailhead. Many parts of the trail are overgrown, I’d definitely recommend covering your skin with proper clothing. You reach a small creek at the middle of the hike, and a large field with a camp-site shortly after. Once you pass the field, the incline is strenuous up to the top. There are lots of different kinds of mushrooms on the way up. The views at the top are great as usual — if you’re looking for a more strenuous hike to get up to Rabun Bald compared to the other routes (such as Bartram Trail), I’d recommend this hike.

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Michelle Hott
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Hiking
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Ana Ophelia
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Hiking

Great trail! was actually a little over 6 miles and you definitely have to earn the amazing view at the top. straight upwards climb! lots of wildflowers and animals. overall a great trail

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Simona Barca
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 7, 2020
Hiking

Trail is well-marked and the directions take you straight to the beginning of the trail. Really nice day hike with 360 views at the top! I was solo hiking and completed the hike round trip in 2 hrs and 47 mins, minus about 10 mins I spent at the top (very windy so be sure to bring a hat). Having said that, the last bit to the summit will take considerably longer as it’s the most challenging part of the hike and will stretch any hiker’s endurance. Some of the trail is very narrow and can be rocky and steep, especially towards the top, so not sure if it would be very dog friendly. Overall great hike!!

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Victoria DeMatteo
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarDecember 25, 2019
HikingRockyScramble

This trail is HARD but so worth the views from the top. I’d say it’s hands down the best view in Georgia. Driving in from the south, the directions bring you down a gravel road and the trail entrance is not well marked. There also isn’t any proper parking so keep your eye out. The last .5 miles of the hike are probably the highest gains in elevation, and definitely require scrambling in some spots. Fauna and flora wise it’s quite diverse, especially the mosses! I spotted maybe a minimum of 4-5 different mosses. There is also a small waterfall around the 2 mile mark that’s quite beautiful and clear running.

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Ryan Smith
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 30, 2019
Hiking

This hike doesn’t mess around! A straight-forward and steep march to the top. There’s a watchtower at the top with phenomenal 360° views of the surrounding mountains. Took us 3 hours round trip (including a 15 minute break at the top).

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Becca Stills
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 12, 2019
Hiking

The way up to the tower is super steep. It took us about 1.5 hours to do the first 2.75 miles. The way down is much easier and faster- we finished in an hour. You get some good ridge views but the up up up gets tiresome. Two solid campsites along the way: one with a water source and the second one higher up the mountain had space for a large group. There’s no parking lot - spot for one car off to the side of the road.

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Norman Hicks Sr.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 29, 2019
Hiking

Holy smokes! This one starts out steep and gets steeper. I was soaking wet with sweat and completely blown at 0.7 miles in, but I think I found my “grandpa” gear after that and managed to get to the top. I think there may be some decent views once the leaves come off the trees but right now the only real one is from the tower on Rabun Bald. Some sections near the top are pretty steep and rocky, I don’t think I would try this trail in ice and snow. There are some pretty nice campsites about halfway up. I did notice what appeared to be feral hog activity, lots of disturbance to the leaf litter and a wallow at the headwaters of a small stream. The silt was roiled up in the wallows when Willow and I reached it and from the lack of other vehicles at the trailhead and the number of spider webs I collected on the way up, I’m pretty sure we were the first hikers up the trail today. I think I might prefer running into a bear, but fortunately Willow and I made it back to the car without encountering either. It looked like the trail maintenance crew had been through recently, cutting out some trees across the trail and putting in/improving water bars, steps and such. Kudos to you guys, you are my heroes! There are certainly easier ways to top out on Rabun Bald, but if you are looking for a bit more challenging route, this trail may be for you.

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Peter Kent
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 14, 2019
Hiking

Forgot water for yogi again. Started training him not to run off and to stop when I want. We turned around early I accidentally closed it so stopped recording at some point.

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Will Barker
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 1, 2019
Hiking

Awesome trail that's easy to find and navigate. It is a more tuff trail than others, but nothing that anyone who's wanting a challenge can't complete. There are alternate routes which are very easy comparatively, but comparing it to Blood and Yonah combined is a stretch. It will have your heart pumping but anyone who wants more of a challenge should give it a go! The top is incredible. We even had a Bald Eagle fly by right as we climbed the observation tower. One side note, there is not much space for parking at the trail head, granted it's not a super busy trail either.

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Scott Ihle
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Hiking

Whew, what a workout! Great trail if you like getting straight to the point. Straight up and doesn’t waste time. Good fun.

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Josh Allen
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Hiking

This was a wonderful hike. The road to the trailhead is in good shape (it is gravel and does have some potholes, but I think any car could make it). The trail is pretty steep, but it’s worth it. There are some nice flat spots to break it up, and the second half of the trail pretty consistently has great views with the leaves off the trees in the winter. I think the view from the top is probably the best in Georgia. It’s totally worth it.

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Spencer G.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 5, 2018
Walking

Road in is dirt/gravel for a good bit and steep at parts, which is fine for a sedan in dry weather and probably okay in wet, though I probably wouldn’t recommend it in winter if it’s snowy. The last push to the top was very demanding, though the view from the top is pretty great, particularly after the corkscrews to get there.

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Wesley Gerrin
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Hiking
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Dwayne Queen
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Stephanie Ernst
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Hiking
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