Cold Mountain via Art Loeb and Cold Mountain Trail

MODERATE 89 reviews

Cold Mountain via Art Loeb and Cold Mountain Trail is a 17.1 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Canton, North Carolina that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, and backpacking and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
17.1 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
4110 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dog friendly

backpacking

camping

hiking

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

Open hike over balds, with multiple 360 degree views for miles.... The portion of the Art Loeb Trail is most spectacular. Black Balsam and Tennant Mountains both exceed 6,000 feet in elevation. The balds provide fantastic 360* views all around, and everywhere else is just about 180* views. Fantastic! The trail I've outlined in the TPO is a figure-8 loop, keeping to the Art Loeb trail in portions, taking an old forest-service road in others.This way you get the combined beauty of the Art Loeb trail with a mixture of wooded-views from the service-road (avoiding redundant stuff that comes with out-and-back hikes). Be wary of spring/summer storms on those balds!!!!

hiking
6 months ago

If you want a 360-degree view of the Blue Ridge Mountains, this is a great hike....and you don't have to go too far or work too hard to get it! We only walked about a mile and we had spectacular views. I do think if you wanted to go farther, you should have a compass and a map as this is a wilderness area and signage is minimal. But it is lovely!

trail running
6 months ago

I train here. It's a bit tricky up top because the trails diverge a lot, you need to climb shining rock. It's in the forest clearing right before hitting old butt trail. You can take flower gap trail and that'll lead straight to shining rock and cold mountain. Yeah, seldom you see bears and rattlesnakes but they're there during Summer. In the Summer, flower gap can be really overgrown.

hiking
6 months ago

Only hiked part of this trail but what we did hike was beautiful. Just as stated a nice moderate hike, the beginning of the trail is little heavier traffic than I'd prefer but tapers off once you hit Bolsam. Stunning views once you hit 1/4 mile in and beyond.

hiking
6 months ago

I only completed a short section of this amazing 30.1 mile trail last month, but what a section it is...up and over Black Balsam Knob and Tennent Mountain to Ivestor Gap! The terrain and the views are spectacular, and the blooming rhododendron were gorgeous. I hope to come back soon to make it out to Shining Rock...maybe even Cold Mountain if I am up for a real challenge!

7 months ago

Hiked this trail with my 13 year old daughter. Amazing and beautiful but very dificult. We hiked the entire trail from the northern point at the Boy Scout camp to the Davidson River Campground at the southern end.
The trail took us 3 &1/2 days to complete. Bear canisters were required which make the pack heavier. I highly reccommend this trail for experienced hikers. Water is scarce so carry water with you.

backpacking
7 months ago

This was an amazing, crazy experience. The first 4 miles over Black Balsam and Tennet mountain were simply breathtaking. The rhododendron, laurel, Galax, gray's lilies were all in full bloom. The views were 360* and stunning. The second 5 miles were very challenging, steep, narrow, and completely enclosed with head-high blueberry bushes and other undergrowth. Camped at Deep Gap. There were almost no views, no trail markers in the labyrinth of trails and no water sources past Shining Rock. The only panoramic view was from the top of Cold Mountain. It was exciting and somewhat scary when heavy rain kept my AllTrails app from loading. Had to go back to old school map, compass, and dead reckoning. I will definitely do it again now that I know the challenges.... I would rate the second half of this trail from Black Balsam Parking area to Cold Mountain as very strenuous.

hiking
8 months ago

We hiked from the Black Balsam parking lane/area to Shining Rock. We had three dogs with us and they LOVED it. Tough hike, but totally do-able and worthwhile if you are in reasonably good shape. Art Loeb trail is fairly difficult to follow since there are no blazes to speak of; I did use the Alltrails map and tracker to make sure we stayed on the trail since nothing is really marked. Shining Rock is pretty sweet!

backpacking
8 months ago

Difficult to navigate if you don't have a map. There are trails everywhere, and once you get past Tennent Mountain there aren't any blazes, so it's hard to tell what trail you're actually on. The views though were amazing.

backpacking
9 months ago

I just spent the night at Flower Gap last night. It was May 7th and it was cooold! The area I camped in was open so it was windy but the views were spectacular! I watched the sunset and sunrise over the mountains all around. No bear run-ins thank God. I think that they are out more in the summer when all of the blueberries are blooming. The Ivestor Gap trail was really wet. Recent rains and snow have a lot of the trail looking like a creekbed. I will take that on day two instead of up and down. All in all, a great overnight trip.

backpacking
11 months ago

What a great place to be, working bald to bald. The knobs allow 360 degree vistas on clear days, magical.

11 months ago

Such a great out n back! Highly suggest to backpackers looking for a good 1-2 nights.

hiking
11 months ago

i haven't done this trail in years but it was a childhood favorite of mine. Shining rock was one to the more memorable hikes I have as a young teenager.

hiking
11 months ago

One of the most beautiful areas in the southeast

11 months ago

Just gorgeous! Great trail for doggies. 360 degree views of the mountains at some points.

backpacking
11 months ago

Done this trail a few times from Davidson River Campground in Pisgah, up over the Parkway and into Shining Rock Wilderness to Camp Daniel Boone.
One of my favorites in the area for sure. Also a nice addition to cut down the Parkway following the road to Sam Knob and then connecting back to the bald via Art Loeb spur trail.

hiking
Monday, February 13, 2017

The best!

backpacking
Sunday, January 22, 2017

Great hike to Shining Rock from Blue Ridge Pkwy over Black Balsam Knob and camped on a bald before Shining Rock.

hiking
Monday, October 31, 2016

Completed a small part of this trail; round trip was around 5 miles. Make sure to wear sunscreen because once you get to the top you are pretty much exposed. Once you get to the top you have 360 degree views of the mountains. Some parts were a bit rocky and narrow so you will get scuffed up by the brush. We took our lab with us and there were several other hikers out with their dogs.

backpacking
Tuesday, September 06, 2016

Best 3 day 2 night backpacking trail in Pisgah. Great scenic views as you climb. Must do if you like to backpack and hike more than just a few miles!

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Great trail and very demanding. watch out for Pilot Mountain no matter which direction you're headed. can be done in 2 full days, especially if you cut out cold mountain but that was my favorite peak so dont miss it! recommend 3 days if you wanna soak it all in!

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