Explore the most popular trail running trails near Asheville with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Great forest area with mixed use trails (walk, bike, hike, run)

Gravel and rock trail that is, for the most part, and easy walk. Not a lot to see along the trail except for the wildflowers and butterflies, which my girlfriend's daughter found quite attractive. The view from the tower is great, even on a cloudy day. The tower platform is still locked but you can ascend to the landing just below, which offers grand views. I wouldn't call this a destination trail. But if you're in the area it's worth a little time.

Beautiful forest views and running creek. Signage could be better, we had trouble finding our way back.

hiking
11 days ago

Only hiked up to the Elk Mountain Scenic Highway Crossing and turned back (2 Miles each way). Pretty mountainside trail, some nice wildflowers, but very little views. A couple nice creek crossings. There’s a hard to find spur trail down to the Tanbark Ridge Overlook on the parkway, but I didn’t take it. Noise from vehicles is consistent throughout the hike, as the trail is just above the parkway.

The view at Haw Creek is worth it! It’s beautiful. Nice hike, I will say the first half is uphill. But it’s great. The highway is buzzing through most of it but I just put in my iPod and thought.

trail running
18 days ago

The trails were beautiful! But, like others have said, they are poorly marked. As long as you go into it with a good “I can get lost and it’s ok!” attitude, you’ll have fun. I took my dog and he was the only dog we saw on a leash. Not a problem for us, but if your dog isn’t friendly/doesn’t like random dogs running up to it, maybe don’t bring yours!

Thank you thank you Eileen for your review
I don’t know if we would have found it if it were not for your detailed instructions

We enjoyed this trail
Our last day in Asheville
It rained all day
But wanted to get one more hike in this pm
Perfect after heavy rain

Half the trail is pea gravel. The other half is over rocks and stumps. It’s intense. Good ride.

(from kid's point of view) We didn't do the whole trail, but not our favorite. a road crossing and walking alongside the BRP - kind of nervewracking with 2 dogs and 3 young kids. Road noise and lots of invasive plants (English Ivy, Wisteria) which might improve as you got further in.

The area is nice for mountain biking. There’s quite a network of trails, some harder than others. Good for a day of riding when DuPont is not an option.

I took my four year old with me on this hike. It was perfect for her. We went on a rainy Sunday and passed multiple people. The top was a nice view but I’m not sure I would go back. Also the watch tower is closed, however you can climb it to the closed stairs door. It was great for a rainy day adventure.

Despite some of the photos, it really wasn't very scenic. We went about 3 miles in and came back out. Any valley views were obstructed by trees and road noise from BRP was quite distracting. Reasonably strenuous, but if you're looking for a quiet hike into the woods, this isn't it.

Great trail for mountain biking! (And, there is heavy bike traffic.) I was walking and trail running. Parts of this trail are on a gravel road. Look at photos so you know what you're getting into. No mountain views. Wooded forest area. What I found most cool is that this trail goes through the Bent Experimental Forest (Pisgah National Forest), and there were interpretive signs explaining various types of forest management: single tree selection, group selection, clear cut, etc. If you are interested in forest management practices, definitely check this network of trails out. The loop I did (see recorded) provided a 4.2 mile walk. In retrospect, the descent at the end was fairly hard (on my knees!), and I wouldn't choose to do it that way again. I should have consulted the topography better before selecting the route.

The trail through dense woods, did not provide many scenic views, and is mostly used by mountain bikers. The bike traffic made for hiking uncomfortable at times and I expected more views of the surrounding hills.

I really want to like this trail more, but just can't fall in love with it. The entire, brief hike up is entirely on a rough gravel road, leaving all sorts of little stones in your boots by the time you summit. The tower, while an interesting feature, is locked at the top and bars entry. You can climb up the steps a bit, but it only has so much appeal. The trail is also gaining in popularity, and you'll find yourself competing with quite a few others to take turns climbing up the tower steps. Speaking of the competition: There's no formal parking lot for this trail. You'll be fighting for a spot on the side of the road. I found the views really comparable to a pull-off just a half mile to the south on the BRP, and regret not putting my time on another trail instead.

hiking
1 month ago

Reading the reviews, I think people took a wide variety of trails in the area and mistakenly thought they were on this one. I’m not surprised, because the trails and trailheads are not well marked. The actual Pine Tree Trail Loop has no water crossings and there is no field. Instead it’s a relatively easy hike through woods and rhododendron. It goes alongside the creek part of the way and then circles through the woods most of the way. The trailhead can be hard to find, and your hiking time can double accidentally which probably happened to a few people. Here’s how you get to the Pine Tree Loop trail. From Alltrails, if you open the directions in google maps, it will get you to the right parking area. It’s labeled Ledford Trailhead. From there, do not walk up the dirt road. That’s the wrong direction and a completely different trail. Instead, park your car, and return on foot to the paved road, and keep walking the direction you were driving. This takes you towards the campground. You’ll go past the ranger station, past a four way stop sign, then you’ll see the trailhead on the right. Follow the blue blazes to stay on the Pine Tree Trail. At the end of the loop, it puts you back on the road in a different location from where you started. This is disorienting, but you’re close to the original trailhead. If you turned right down the paved road from there, it would take you to the lake. You want to turn left to head back towards the ranger station and your car. So, plan on an extra mile of walking on the paved road in addition to your trail time. And it doesn’t hurt to bring some water and a snack along, in case you find yourself on some of the intersecting trails and doubling your hiking time, which I think is pretty commonplace.

Absolutely beautiful even with a lot of people around you still can find those solitude spots for awhile

This trail takes you through a beautiful forest. It is easy, quiet, and lovely.

Amazing view from the top after a short walk up a gravel hill. Well worth the stop!

Took my 5 & 3 year old, its a fun little hike. Directions were slightly off, it was to my right coming in with a small bridge and asheville parks sign. Not much parking, maybe three cars in the mud along the side of the road. Really shady, ends at the blue ridge parkway where you see a teeny tiny mountain view far off and through the trees. Uphill the whole way with very gradual inclines. Lots of cool mushrooms along the way.

hiking
1 month ago

Had a great time. The view at the top is amazing!

Perfect half day hike! Partially along BPW

Easy trail run

Solid run. If you do the loop counter clockwise, you'll be road running all the way to the top and there's a lot of sun midday (so I would recommend this as a morning/evening run). But beautiful single track through the forest on the descent.

Easy trail with a beautiful view.

These are some nice walking trails. They aren't very challenging, at least the trek I took wasn't. They are nice to get out into nature and would be perfect for children and pets and families. You will have to pay a $2 per person cash fee at the campground to get to the trails and lake. If you use a credit card, it's a minimum $10 charge! Be warned.

I took a walk on this path today with my son. Its a decent gradual slope to the top. Its a pretty easy hike and the view from the top even if you don't climb the tower is beautiful. We did climb the tower and that view is even better. you can see clear to Brevard, Asheville, and Waynesville.

If you are looking for a quiet hike in nature to get away from it all, this is not it. This trail loops around part of the Asheville commuter section of the Blue Ridge Parkway, so there is quite a bit of traffic noise. But, if you want to take a quick stroll after work or dinner or take the kids on a nature scavenger hunt, this is a great place.

Incredible sunset from the top of the tower!

Great views and good out and back.

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