Grandfather Mountain Trail

HARD 156 reviews
#2 of 121 trails in

Grandfather Mountain Trail is a 3.9 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Linville, North Carolina that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
3.9 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1722 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

camping

hiking

nature trips

scenic driving

cave

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

scramble

One of the most technical mountain hikes without climbing equipment east of the Mississippi, Grandfather Mountain trail traverses forest, exposed cliffs, rock outcroppings, ladders and attached cables to spectacular views. The trail climbs to McRae Peak, Attic's Window and the end of the trail at the top of Grandfather Calloway Peak at 5964' - the same point the Profile Trail ends. The Grandfather Trail runs the length of the summit ridge from the Grandfather Mountain attraction to Calloway Peak. It offers astonishing variety, running in and out of wind-dwarfed spruce and fir, across or around rock walls and pinnacles and into open spaces with mountain views in every direction. It was along this trail two centuries ago that explorer/botanist Andre Michaux broke into song thinking he had arrived at the high point of North America. The pace is often slow. There are chutes where progress is hand-over-hand and extra steep sections where hikers use in-place cables and ladders. An alternative to taking the ladders up MacRae Peak is to opt for the more sheltered Underwood Trail. Not recommended for children or inexperienced hikers.

hiking
10 days ago

Great views, not too difficult to hike.

I love the vantage point at the peak

hiking
13 days ago

17 days ago

30 days ago

This is just stunning.

1 month ago

Quite crowded, but it is worth it! Great views that come with a challenge of ones endurance! You will enjoy this hike if you can handle a little leg burn and steep climbing.

1 month ago

We did the Profile Trail to all peaks of the Grandfather Trail and back down the Profile Trail to our car. Pictures do not do this experience justice! Trail was somewhat crowded at times (Memorial Day weekend) and the Profile Trail parking feels up quickly but it was an amazing hike. The ladders, the rock scrambling and the views are worth the effort. Took my wife and I 6.5 hrs.
BTW -starting at Profile Trailhead is free so if you are up for adding some mileage, this is the way to go. Starting at Grandfather will set you back $20 as mentioned in other posts.

1 month ago

1 month ago

2 months ago

2 months ago

The first time I ever have gone hiking and it was amazing. I loved the views and the experience. It was the highlight of my trip.

2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

Amazing hike. Did this with a big dog and 3 kids. Hikers NEED to be aware of ladders and ice conditions in the winter months. We left from the profile trail head and there were no warnings of snow or ice. It also says that dogs are allowed but it is NOT a good idea as several of the ladders are very difficult with your pooch. Great hike if you have all the info.

hiking
3 months ago

We went all the to Calloway and Profile, they were good views. It's blazing hot during the Summer. there are a series of ladders and ledges, be careful. Not for anyone afraid of heights. Also, that $20 other reviewers mentioned.

3 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

beautiful views and rock formations

3 months ago

views was amazing.the ladders up the aide of the cliffs was by far my favorite amazing view and a good rush climbing them.o reason im giving it 4 starts instead of 5 is the swinging bridge was a little disappointing not what i thought plus its not 20 dollar's to park its 20 dollars a person but for me well worth it