Cloudland Trail

MODERATE 17 reviews
#4 of 11 trails in

Cloudland Trail is a 2.4 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Bakersville, North Carolina that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
2.4 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
291 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

cross country skiing

forest

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

bugs

muddy

rocky

snow

Directions from Burnsville, NC: Travel east on US 19E to Spruce Pine, turn left (north) on SR 226 and follow to Bakersville. Once in Bakersville, the road changes to SR 261. Follow this to Carvers Gap where the TN / NC state line is located. Look for the Roan Mountain sign on your left and turn left on SR 1348. The Appalachian Trail crosses here. Follow SR 1348 and turn right at the first parking lot, not at the parking lot at Carvers Gap. The Cloudland trailhead is on the left as you enter the parking lot and is well marked with orange blazes.

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

This is a great hike for two reasons. First, the views from the two observation platforms are fantastic. Second, this is a great example of the flora that exists above 5,000 feet in the Appalachians. It reminded us of the Northwest. But there is no waterfall, unless there's a part of the trail not on the AllTrails map.

hiking
3 months ago

We parked at the Cloudland parking lot, the first one you get to at the top. You can continue on the gravel road past this parking lot all the way to the .7 of a mile marker from the Bluffs. We began from the start and it was approx 3 miles round trip. Beautiful trail, easy to maneuver. We had our 5 year old with us. He did great! Some parts are a bit muddy but there are ways around the mud holes. The last .7 of the trail can get crowded and the trail is narrow in areas. Just use etiquette, not everyone has manners so be aware. It gets noisy in the last leg too. We suggest early morning if you enjoy tranquil nature time. The views at the end are amazing. Again the viewing area can get crowded, people don't want to move and allow others to see so be aware of this too. For the ultimate experience go early or during the week.

4 months ago

I have this trail a 5 star based solely on the incredible view we had! We hiked from the big parking lot (1.4 miles each way) and it was relatively a flat hike with just a few rocky and sloped areas. My friend and I both wore tennis shoes, but there's several areas that is muddy and boots would've been more appropriate. Key note, once you arrive into the parking lot, the trail starts immediately as you turn in. It is not around the restroom area. A lot of people, including us, almost missed this. Once at the top you will get great views. Amazing to look out and see the other mountains and down in the valleys. Enjoyable hike, not many people around when we were there, love to do again sometime.

4 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

Easy trail. Beautiful hike on cool summer day--mostly shady, mossy. Trail can be wet in places. A few tips I wish we'd had. 1. Cloudland Trail does not begin on the end of the parking lot near the restrooms. It is literally right in front of you to the left when you pull up into the parking lot. It is across from the "keep right" sign, but the trailhead sign is turned so you can't see it. (see photo of my daughter and dogs with trailhead sign) 2. The trail does not start at the Cloudland Hotel site. A beautiful bald area for picnics and play but the trail from there is the Appalachian Trail which goes to Carvers Gap in one direction or continues on southward. 3. When you do hike in on Cloudland Trail, it splits. To the right will take you to first overlook. To the left keeps you on the trail. 4. It was worth our confusion (and hike on the AT) to find this on our way out. We hiked it and the view is spectacular as well as reasonably quiet--on a summer Saturday we only passed 2 sets of people. Easy trail which my daughter did in Chaos (even on the wet rock area). 1.4 miles from big parking lot; .7 miles from bus parking lot.

hiking
5 months ago

hiking
5 months ago

Beautiful short trail with amazing views from the top of Roan Mountain to Roan High Bluff. Trail exits the top of Roan Mountain parking area on the side away from the restrooms, opposite the hotel remains. Trail passes two bus parking areas. There are two great overlook areas, one just a short walk from the parking area and one at High Bluff with a nice platform for a 180 view. Enjoy the moss covered trees and high elevation air. The stone platform near the parking area is a great place to soak it all in.

5 months ago

hiking
5 months ago

You can make this hike long or short. We made it a short hike by driving to within 1/2 mile of the overlook.You can accomplish this by driving to the bus parking lot, and then follow the exit road to the sign for the trail. The trail is well maintained and quite pleasant but the big payoff is at the end when you get to the overlook platform. You are at over 6100 feet and on a clear day can see for miles! I really enjoyed this short little hike with the big payoff!

hiking
6 months ago

7 months ago

Sunday, November 06, 2016

No waterfall but the overlook at the end is spectacular

hiking
Monday, October 24, 2016

The Cloudland Trail is part of the wonderful Roan Mountain experience. It runs from the old Cloudland Hotel site past the Rhododendron Gardens to the viewing platform on Roan High Bluff. It is not difficult, with spectacular views and special scenery. The road up from Carvers Gap is only open during the warmer months, but those looking for a great workout can always hike the Appalachian Trail up and over Roan High Knob to get there.

hiking
Saturday, July 09, 2016

hiking
Monday, March 28, 2016

A nice woodland walk to an observation point. I hiked from Carver's Gap to the Roan Mountain High Knob and then to the Bluff. I tracked the entire hike but you can pick my track at the parking lot at the Cloudland historical site and follow it to the bluff. It was foggy when I arrived at Carver's Gap so essentially there were no views to be seen today. There were no wildflowers at the high gardens either. The forest however, was quite spectacular with bright green fir trees and moss amid a back drop of brown. I took the road back to Carver's Gap and made a loop out of it.

hiking
Saturday, April 06, 2013

Cloudland Trail is part of a very "civic" Cloudland Canyon State Park. We went during the fall months in 09, and found the State Park very crowded. The first part of the trail is a series of canyon cliff paths, bridges, and stairs created by the park to get to the bottom. The majority of people visiting the park, especially with kids, will stop at the bottom as this is where a large waterfall and pond is. You can continue on for about a mile, following a stream, before you reach a gate for private property. The stream and surrounding canyon is quite beautiful none the less. The climb back up can be strenuous for some, but overall, easy hike.