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Hawksbill Mountain Trail

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Linville Gorge Wilderness

Hawksbill Mountain Trail is a 1.8 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Newland, North Carolina that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking and is best used from April until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 1.8 miles Elevation Gain: 600 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dog friendly

hiking

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

Enjoy a quick 2-mile round trip that climbs over 600 feet feet through rhododendron to a craggy summit and 360 degree views of Linville Gorge and Pisgah National Forest. This hike to the summit of Hawksbill Mountain (elevation 4,009 ft) has an amazing payoff with panoramic views of the "canyon" of Linville Gorge - with the valley floor some 2,000 feet below you. On a clear day, you can even see the skyline of Charlotte - about 90 miles away! The short hike is strenuous with a climb of nearly 700 feet gain in elevation. After hiking Hawksbill, drive about five miles down the road to the trail to the top of Table Rock Mountain, the other dominant peak on the rim of Linville Gorge. You can see both of these peaks from the panoramic perch at Wiseman's View on the other side of the Gorge (near the trail to Linville Falls.) The trail to the summit of Hawksbill begins from the parking area on a unpaved Pisgah National Forest service road. After about an half mile, the summit trail turns left just before reaching the Jonas Ridge Trail (it's an obvious turn with a sign). From here, the summit trail gets progressively rockier and, after 1/4 mile, arrives at the ridge. Just before you reach the ridge, the hike splits. Either trail will take you to the top. The trail to the right is longer and more gradual. Go straight for a short, steep climb. At the top (at a popular camping spot), go to the right for the best views. Go to the left for a better view of Table Rock.

hiking
9 hours ago

Fantastic views and fairly challenging hike. My son and I also hiked over to Sitting Bear and back. The trails are well used but not well marked. Not much signage once you start the ascent. Be sure you go to the left and right at the very top. Hawksbill itself is the trail to the right at the very top. Wild blueberries on the view to the left.

hiking
muddy
rocky
1 day ago

Great trail and nice view at the end. Arrived at 9am and there was plenty of parking. No parking left at 11am when we left.

Such a great hike. The view is amazing.

hiking
4 days ago

Definitely more than .6 miles for the top. Camped on the mountain top with my brother and got totally soaked. We set up camp and the sky dumped everything it had on us. Thank god it was only 65 outside. Probably would have been better if it wasn’t so nasty out.

hiking
bugs
rocky
5 days ago

hiking
5 days ago

Beautiful hike, one of my favorites for sure. I went at about 5:30am for the sunrise and passed no one the entire hike. beautiful to explore once you summit. A few campers at the top, but it didn't effect anything. I highly recommend going early in the morning because it's so busy during the day! Also the road to get there is just a dirt road that is pretty narrow so keep that in mind!

Hawksbill is always beautiful. The view on top is incredible.

hiking
7 days ago

A short but moderate hike. Winding trail up the mountain side. Once you get up there - amazing 360 degree views of the gorge, lakes and other mountains. If you have the opportunity do this hike in the fall to capture all the foliage, absolutely stunning. There are a couple of camp sites at the peak as well. Great spot.

hiking
10 days ago

Definitely recommend! one of my favorites with the exception of Glacier National Park! Absolutely beautiful at the top 360 views.

hiking
12 days ago

The 360 views are amazing! Such a good short hike for the reward at the summit.

hiking
12 days ago

Enjoyable hike! Got there around 12 and saw 15-20 people the whole time. Walked through some cool forestry and ended up at a nice view. Would recommend.

16 days ago

really run hike. flowers were in full bloom the whole way up. not a hard hike my 2 year old walked the wholr thing with out stopping other than to climb a rock or tree. For the east coast the view at the top is very nice. fun family hike for a sunday

hiking
muddy
18 days ago

This is a great trail. I have hiked it several times with a kid strapped to my back. The trail is shaded and not to hard. However, it can be very muddy at times so i would recommend waterproof shoes . Once you reach the top the views are incredible and so worth the hike.

hiking
19 days ago

Relatively easy hike. There’s two forks in the trail when you’re going up from the parking lot, keep left for both forks. If you go to the right at the first fork you’ll end up going to sitting bear mtn (great backpacking trail). A right at the second fork will lead you to the base of Hawksbill mountain but there’s not much of a view there. Portions of this trail does get steep and is easier to do with little to no weight. The views at the top are phenomenal and worth checking out during sunset. You can see a lot of the gorge and the other mountains like Grandfather from up top. This reminds me a lot of the Hanging Rock trail in Danbury, NC.

20 days ago

Not a long trail but a good workout The rocks at the top and the views combined for a stellar hike. Don't miss this one.

hiking
26 days ago

I don’t easily give out 5 stars but this is awesome. Next time I come I will stay at the top at least an hour. I’m 58yo, had to stop to catch our breath a few times, but worth it. A good sweat but worth it! Flowering shrubs on the early ascent made me think I was dead and going to heaven. Pinch me. Tks KelliLenka for turning us on to this.

hiking
27 days ago

Pictures don't really do justice to the incredible views at the top. On one side you have Table Rock and the unique rock formations of Linville Gorge, on the other Grandfather Mountain and the Blue Ridge Mountains as far as you can see. Fewer people than I would've expected on a Sunday morning given the trail is relatively easy (though stepp in a few spots near the top) and the views are so unbeatable.

hiking
rocky
27 days ago

Arrive early- parking lot is small and limited. We started hiking up at 7.30 am on Saturday and did not meet a single soul, only couple people that were camping overnight on the top. Fairly short but steep hike with beautiful views once you reach the top.

hiking
29 days ago

The trail was a little challenging since it's mostly uphill. However, once you reach the top the view is worth the hike up. Absolutely beautiful.

hiking
29 days ago

It got a bit steep and rocky towards the top, but the beautiful 360 degree views from the summit made it worth it.

1 month ago

Short easy hike with the best views of linville gorge. If you can, go at 7PM to catch the sunset. I camped right down the forest service road and did it at 7am, then went back at 7PM with a 6 pack of tall boys in my pack. Well worth it. I'm sure the weekend crowds are insane!

hiking
muddy
1 month ago

great trail! a fairly easy hike most of the way. completely shaded until you reach the top & the views at the top are incredible!! we got there around 10:30 on a monday & passed less than 10 people. had the top to ourselves for about an hour before the afternoon crowd started to roll in. trail itself is a bit narrow & some areas along the way are muddy. there are also lots of roots & rocks sticking up. saw plenty of people with dogs & small children. just watch your step :)

hiking
muddy
1 month ago

hiking
muddy
1 month ago

This is my favorite trail in the area! The views at the end are totally worth it!!

hiking
1 month ago

Awesome 360 degree views!

hiking
1 month ago

This hike really challenged me. The view at the top was absolutely gorgeous! Worth it.

1 month ago

Great hike. Mild crowd even on Memorial Day weekend. Last 20% of the uphill is tough but my 3 year old managed with some help. Best views I have experienced at the top in western NC. I highly recommend this trail. It is open!

1 month ago

Tough little hike, but definitely worth it!

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