Big Fork Ridge Loop Trail

MODERATE 18 reviews

Big Fork Ridge Loop Trail is a 9 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Waynesville, North Carolina that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Horses are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 9.0 miles Elevation Gain: 1,863 feet Route Type: Loop

backpacking

camping

fishing

hiking

horseback riding

nature trips

running

forest

wild flowers

wildlife

blowdown

bugs

muddy

rocky

scramble

no dogs

Loop includes the following trails: Big Fork Ridge, Caldwell Fork, and Rough Fork Trail

hiking
blowdown
bugs
muddy
rocky
washed out
9 months ago

03/30/2019 Starting weather conditions 49 cloudy. Ended 77 and sunny. Lots of bugs and sweat bees low to the ground. Plenty elk at trail head and tracks entire hike. Blow downs are extremely heavy but easy to patiently get around. Tender foots stay home. I disagree with previous comments. This area is hit hard by the woolly algae crisis. The NPS would have to clear cut 200’ each side of trail to fix to issue of blow downs. Not going to happen and a waste of funding at this stage of crisis. Great hike. Ankle deep water on three crossings. 6 or 8 foot bridges. Did not see a single hiker until the 9 mile mark. Last 1/2 mile lots of tourist. Go early as in the break of dawn. Enjoy the solitude created by blow downs. Don’t forget the huge Big Popular trees. You will see elk. Many other trails nearby.

hiking
blowdown
washed out
Sat Jan 19 2019

Hiked on 12/31. Agree with the below poster. Due to lack of government funding, there were a lot of blow downs. It took significant time and patience (barely had any left after this loop) to get through the trail. I had bloody legs after from all the scrambling through blow downs. It was worth it and is definitely a great loop, but the blow downs weren’t fun. I did see about twenty elk while hiking in the woods though. They’ve retreated from the fields and into the backcountry this time of year.

hiking
Sun Dec 30 2018

Hiked on 12/30. First, I want to acknowledge that this was after many weeks of rains and in the middle of a government shutdown. I certainly don't fault the NPS for the trail conditions. That said, this trail is barely hikeable in current conditions. There are hundreds of limbs and trees blocking the trail. Around twenty trees required significant manuevering (going off trail to go around, using a second person to help mount and dismount, etc). There are also four creek crossings that require creativity (read: creek at least one foot deep but no bridge) if you want to stay dry. Definitely not moderate in current conditions. More like a parkour course.

Wed Oct 24 2018

Great hike. This loop consists of connecting a few different smaller trails but was a great route with beautiful landscapes. There were signs for active bear interactions posted on a small section of the trail and to be cautious when in this area (we didn't see anything). Trail does not have markers thru out, only at trail intersections but the trail is well defined thru out.

hiking
Sun Sep 24 2017

Great trail. Very steep incline. Down trees over the trail in one section.

Sun Sep 03 2017

Great trail with great views.

hiking
Sat Oct 06 2012

Great trail! Definitely considered a moderate. Campsite 41 is plenty big for large groups. It is located at the halfway point, so it's easy to break up the trip into two days. And, if you want to stay over an extra night, just set up camp at campsite 40 near Woody Place. I recommend hiking the loop clockwise to avoid lengthy inclines. BLOG ENTRY: http://sixpanel.blogspot.com/2012/10/big-fork-ridge-loop.html Plenty of water, so don't carry a bladder. Save some weight.

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2 months ago

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8 months ago

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8 months ago

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Fri Nov 02 2018

Mon Jun 12 2017

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Sat Dec 24 2016

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Mon Nov 17 2014