Appalachian Trail: Carvers Gap to US 19E

HARD 128 reviews
#1 of 11 trails in

Appalachian Trail: Carvers Gap to US 19E is a 13.3 mile heavily trafficked point-to-point trail located near Burnsville, North Carolina that features beautiful wild flowers and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
13.3 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2,060 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Point to Point

dogs on leash

backpacking

birding

camping

cross country skiing

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

muddy

snow

This trail is great for backpacking and normally would make an overnight backpacking trip. This hike begins at Carver's Gap parking lot. You can either take the AT trail at the Carver's Gap parking lot or walk up the road 2 miles to get to the parking area near Roan High Knob.

camping
2 days ago

Hello! I'm looking to hike/camp on this trail soon and was wondering if it's necessary to have a bear canister? I currently don't own one, so if you know of a place close by that you can rent one, that would also be helpful!

thank you!
hmweeks93@gmail.com

backpacking
8 days ago

Loved this section of the AT! So beautiful. Took my girls (age 7 & 10) backpacking for the weekend and this was great for them as well. They are pretty tough kiddos and did great. We stayed at the Mountain Harbour B&B, and after an awesome, huge breakfast, we were shuttled to Carvers Gap and started our hike back to 19E. Big Bald was intense but we loved every minute of it. This is defiantly a section I would love to repeat.

Highly recommend. Beautiful 360 degree views. Areas of open fields with wildflowers. Areas for camping/shelter and water sources. Would make for a great hike in, overnight stay. It rained on us all day which made for some very wet terrain. Even areas of standing water. Difficult at times but never a regret.

backpacking
24 days ago

beautiful, even when it's a torrential downpour.

backpacking
24 days ago

This hike will make you feel alive again!!

backpacking
1 month ago

One of the best backpacking trips I’ve done. We chose the campsite on the top of Big Hump, and although it got super windy at one point and we were clouded in most of the time that night, we woke up in the morning to clear skies and a spectacular view of the mountains in every direction, and it was so worth the trek up there.

backpacking
1 month ago

My first time backpacking with my ASU class and had a great experience! And the sunset from the top of the little hump was so beautiful!

1 month ago

Great balds with fantastic views. The most beautiful place I have been so far.

1 month ago

Absolutely beautiful! Will repeat again soon.

1 month ago

Busy on a summer Saturday.

hiking
1 month ago

Best hike I've ever done in 40 plus years of being alive.
Time this hike around rhododendron and azalea season in mid June and you'll say the same thing. From the start at Carver's Gap, the AT wastes little time in the WOW factor as the trail ascends the incredible Round Bald which is a haven for Catawba Rhodo's and azaleas. After a brief dip at Engine Gap, the AT ascends the smaller ,but equally beautiful Jane Bald. By the time you reach Grassy Ridge Bald your senses will be in overdrive.

After a section through wooded areas, the AT comes near the Overmountain Shelter, which is a must to check out, then a steep ascent Yellow Mountain, and then the grand finale-the awesome ascent up Little Hump and Big Hump mountains. Both are vast balds that have awesome, grand views from the top. The AT, after the Humps, descends the Roans down to Doll Flats through a knee shredder of steep rock steps and rooty surfaces.

It's just an epic hike that we plan on doing every June, and probably October. Wonderful views of Mount Mitchell, Grandfather Mountain and countless other peaks and ridges of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

hiking
2 months ago

Hiked this section with my son two days ago. Challenging weather and conditions at times but well worth the unparalleled views from the grassy balds when the clouds disappeared. Be prepared as the weather can change in an instant and there is no cover on the balds if you are caught there. Shuttled from Mountain Harbor and would highly recommend this as part of your logistics if hiking point to point. Overall awesome and I will be back again sometime hoping for more consistent sun and perhaps when the rhododendrons are in bloom!

backpacking
2 months ago

Amazing section of the AT. Spent the night at Overmountain shelter with 20 thru hikers. awesome experience, rained the entire time and never saw a view.

3 months ago

Awesome trip, shuttled up to carvers gap and hiked back to the hostel. plan 15-17 actual miles if you are going to explore, check out the red barn, etc. makes a great overnight.

backpacking
3 months ago

Definitely an amazing trail. Well worth going to. It had beautiful sunsets and amazing view because there were very few trees. It was an amazing place to bring a drone or backpack. Just has ridges that go on for miles and allow for good areas to have camp and fire pits in the rocks while besides it in a tent on soft grasses. Awesome place.

3 months ago

I’ve hiked this section quite a few times and it never gets old. One of the most beautiful hikes in Eastern US in my opinion. Be prepared for any kind of weather.

4 months ago

Spent the night at the shelter and had some challenging weather on our hike out to 19. Harbor hostel folks took great care of us with a fairly priced shuttle back to carvers. Should have at least a couple overnighters in before attempting this one IMO.

4 months ago

Beautiful views , diversified terrain with some pretty strenuous climbs .... 50 mile an hour winds on one of the peaks .... significant downhill section near end ... if you are looking for a hostel / bar / food at the end of this section try The Station at 19E , they really take care of hikers .

hiking
7 months ago

The Sound of Music will be what you are thinking of when you get up on the balds. Spectacular! I hike a small section of this in the summer. Going back this fall to camp. Prepare to be WOW'D!

hiking
8 months ago

One of the more scenic hikes I have ever been on. We shuttled up from Mountain Harbor and hiked to Overmountain Shelter on day 1. We heard weather was going to move in the next day, so we hiked the remaining portion on Day 2. Not a bad hike on day 2, until you get to Doll Flats and then the remaining 3-4 miles is a pretty steep drop. We were glad to get out on Day 2, because the next day it snowed!! The views from the balds are well worth the hike.

backpacking
9 months ago

Looking for information about this hike. I am planning a 2 night trip to make it a little easier. Can you camp anywhere of does it have to be at the shelters? Water sources? e-mail me please at keith.filson@att.net

backpacking
Friday, August 18, 2017

Loved this section! We hiked from carvers to Hump and camped there. Then continued on the next day down to 19e. There is a little place for 2 hammocks if your lucky and get there first! Sunset was amazing! Parked our car at Mountain Harbour and they shuttled us up.

hiking
Thursday, August 03, 2017

We hiked to all 3 balds with our 10 & 15 yo. We were sunburned but other than that, awesome place, worth the sunburn, just have to wear a sunscreen next trip.

backpacking
Monday, July 31, 2017

Simply stunning hike. It's about 15 miles from the trailhead to Mountain Harbour Hostel. They run a shuttle up to the trailhead for about 40 bucks. The hike is intense. The climbs are tough and the final descent is over very treacherous terrain. Regardless, it is 100% worth every bit of struggle. The views are unparalleled in the Eastern US.

You won't regret it.

hiking
Monday, July 24, 2017

View from the highlands are amazing. The little hump and big hump are challenging. Trails are well maintained, camp sites have water sources available. We hiked from carvers gap at 9:45am and arrived to camp at doll flats at 7pm. This is not a hike for the beginner so pack lightly with basic essentials. I was lucky to have someone in the group to carry my overloaded pack. I'm forever grateful!

hiking
Saturday, July 22, 2017

started at carvers gap and hiked to Stan Murry shelter. Beautiful weather all day with some flame azalea and grays lily blooming. Will definitely be back in the future to hike again.

hiking
Saturday, July 08, 2017

As with most trail reviews, a lot depends on the weather, your physical condition, and your mental condition. Unfortunately when we did this hike it had rained hard the previous night which made the trail very wet and muddy. And it was raining on and off all day that we hiked it. At the balds we were in the clouds so couldn't enjoy the sweeping vistas and when the sun was out we were in the woods making everything steamy and sticky. We had good insect repellant fortunately so the bugs didn't bother us. We started from 19E and hiked to Carvers Gap (left car at Carvers Gap the night before and it was fine), which meant we had a gross elevation gain of about 2500 ft. However, AllTrails pegged the gain at 4800+ ft. Quite the workout over 14.3 miles. First 5 miles pretty much straight up to Hump Mtn. Tough sections with mud and slick rocks. The trail over the Hump is very narrow, deep, and hidden by overgrown grass, which when combined with a muddy track made for a treacherous downhill trek. We had thought about making it to overmountain shelter for lunch but the side path to it leads down. Not what we wanted at that point in our hike since it meant an uphill return so we ate along the trail. Lots of flowers in bloom, which was a little surprising and some rhododendrons in bloom still too which made for a pretty hike since we couldn't enjoy the vistas. Last 3.7 miles from Stan Murray shelter to Carvers Gap in the rain, wind, fog, and mud. And of course mostly uphill. All in all, very tough hike without the rewards due to the weather.

backpacking
Thursday, June 15, 2017

Absolutely gorgeous hike! Camped on top of Hump Mountain with a few groups of friendly hikers and enjoyed an unbelievable sunset and sunrise from the peak. Challenging hike as well, great weekend backpacking trip!

backpacking
Thursday, June 15, 2017

ugh ... damn, hump and little hump... wow were they impressive, and quite the ass-kickers!

backpacking
Thursday, May 18, 2017

Parked at Mountain Harbor B&B/Hiker Hostel on HY 19E NC-TN line approximately 4hrs from Raleigh NC. shuttle up to carvers gap started at 10 am from there, at Jane's bald the trail goes left. there is water about 100 yards down from the split if you need it (piped) was setting up tent at the red barn by 2:30 about a 9 mile day . Awesome night with a bunch of good people to sit around camp fire with and good water source there. From the red barn to E19 is a tough hike but is the best part well worth it . You don't have to be a season hiker for this but will help if your in shape. I will do this again but will start at Iron Mt for a three day.

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