Rocktop Trail is a 5.9 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Gastonia, North Carolina that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, nature trips, and bird watching and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 5.9 miles Elevation Gain: 1,387 feet Route Type: Loop

dog friendly

hiking

nature trips

bird watching

running

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

scramble

The Rocktop Trail is less traveled and has excellent views. It has a lower elevation than the Crowders summit, but has great views of the cliffs and the surrounding countryside.

hiking
20 days ago

I reached the parking lot at 8am, and even by then, there were lots of folks on the trail. This is 'crowders' in more than one sense of the word. Some trails had been closed due to covid. There were two well marked loops that had been opened up. The views from top are fantastic. I went counter-clockwise, so was able to ascend the big rocks and descend the steps, I'd want to do the other way because it would feel like a much different trail. When you get to the tower, it's difficult to find the trail markers. if you ascend to the tower, go right at the tower, away from the gravel road.

hiking
21 days ago

If you want to see a bunch of people not social distancing, this is the place. The nature is top notch though.

hiking
22 days ago

Really enjoyed the hike. It was very active with people. Some work being done to the trails, one bridge was out. View was great.

hiking
scramble
washed out
27 days ago

Rock top summit was closed about 1 mile from turnaround point, detour at around .25 mile mark for felled trees, but still a great hike!

hiking
rocky
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

great hiking trail

hiking
rocky
scramble
2 months ago

hiking
rocky
2 months ago

hiking
muddy
4 months ago

hiking
7 months ago

I would advise that if you take the Rocktop trail either direction with kids, to keep them close because there are many drop offs that would be fatal if they fall off. There are many big rocks/boulders that provides opportunities to fall on and get injured. Take these into consideration when children are involved. My 7 year old loved this trail when we ascended it. You can see Charlotte's skyline from this trail.

hiking
7 months ago

My son and I hiked this trail and yes it was a workout, but we loved every moment. We saw vultures perched on a cliff and of course the summit was amazing.

hiking
7 months ago

Rocky, but great scenery. Very tough on your feet if you don’t have good protection. Idk if it was an off day for me, but this seems to be the most strenuous trail in the park. It’s not very long, but the elevation change is intense. I’m also not in the greatest shape in the world I’m about 320lbs so if I can do it so can you.

hiking
9 months ago

I really enjoyed this trail at first I wasn't impressed because the first stretch is relatively easy wide gravel trail that brings you to a road crossing but after that it gets fun! lots of big giant rocks and rock scrambling but nothing too crazy. lots of really nice views and places to sit and enjoy the scenery. once you get to the split to make the loop to the summit I went left and it turns into a service road but brings you up and around a tower before it turns back into rugged trail again to the summit. I went on a Tuesday and saw many other hikers so I wouldn't consider this lightly trafficked.

hiking
rocky
scramble
9 months ago

I’ve done all of the trails to Crowders summit, and this one is the most adventurous! I like to use GPS on this trail because it’s easy to take a wrong turn. Beautiful and super fun! Lots of scenic spots on the way to the top.

hiking
9 months ago

Overnight gear test

hiking
rocky
10 months ago

Enjoyed this one but was cut short of finishing the loop. It was kind of enjoyable navigating the terrain but may not be for those looking for a smooth-surfaced trail. Personally I really liked it.

hiking
rocky
scramble
10 months ago

Amazing trail. Good shoes are the key. You definitely do not want to slip jumping from rock to rock. The views are incredible and the sneak peaks on the way up are a plus.

hiking
10 months ago

This trail was fun but also challenging. In the beginning, there are some parts where you have to do a slight rock scramble. There are also some side routes you can take if you do not want to do this. The hill before the summit has a pretty good grade to it. Make sure that you take your time and bring lots of water. I saw multiple groups of people that had no water at all; this is very dangerous. The view from the top is beautiful. You can see Charlotte off in the distance. Remember to leave no trace. Happy Trails!

hiking
rocky
Tue May 21 2019

hiking
Mon May 20 2019

hiking
Mon Apr 29 2019

This is definitely a very popular trail. There lots of people on the trail and at the top taking in the view. It is a kick ass view and you can even see Uptown from the top.

hiking
rocky
Tue Apr 23 2019

The inclines will get you! Great hike with the pups!

Tue Jan 15 2019

A great trail, and did not encounter anyone as it was a cooler day. Good hike!

hiking
Mon Nov 12 2018

Pretty great views and the rock structures are great for running and jumping.

hiking
Sat Nov 03 2018

You should keep your dogs on a leash for this hike due to the busy State Road that cuts through the Park. It costs $13 to camp overnight. You must cross over the State Road to hike the complete trail, but after that, it gets reasonably excluded. Some challenging hills expose you to some great views.

hiking
Sat Oct 06 2018

My favorite trail so far at crowders.

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