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

Fontana Village, North Carolina Map

A great overnight hike. The road across Fontana Dam is open now (May 2018), which saves a mile at either end of the hike. The climb up to Shuckstack is pretty steep, but beautiful even on a rainy day. The descent down Lost Cove trail is also very steep, and muddy on the day I hiked it; I was glad to be going down it and not up! Campsite 91 is lovely and quiet, but I pushed on to Campsite 90 at Eagle Creek. The trail between 91 and 90 crosses the stream about 8 or 9 times, each one requiring some wading, so bring water shoes! The streams were not high when I crossed them, never more than about a foot deep. Trekking poles are a help for balance, as some of the streams are pretty swift-flowing. Campsite 90 is right on the water -- I had expected more people, but it was quiet and beautiful. The Lakeshore trail is much hillier than its name might lead you to expect, though not nearly as bad as the ascent from Fontana Dam to Shuckstack. The trail passes a group of rusted car bodies, eerie reminders of the people displaced by the dam and the national park. All in all a great hike.

This was the first big backpacking trip for my son and I, he was about 13 at the time. We did it but this is no easy walk. It was a great hike with memories we will treasure forever, perhaps the high point was all the other hikers we met (mostly thru hikers). Biggest drawback on this hike are the national park regs requiring section hikers to use specific shelters each night. This forced us to hike some short days and some days that were crazy long. Water sources were frequent enough but not big, some required forming a funnel with a large magnolia leaf to channel water into our filtered bottles. Be prepared for some serious ups and downs in the terrain. The shelters were often crowded but everyone had a great time. Not a hike to get away from people, at least no in May. But if you enjoy camaraderie it is a very fun hike. We stayed our last night at Standing Bear Hostel near Davenport Gap which was very entertaining too!

7 rock hops down to CS91 then 8 stream crossings with a few rock hops on down to Lakeshore Trail.

(Only reviewing the Dam area)
We set out to hike a few miles (north bound) of the AT from the Dam and didn’t get too far, two miles in. No big issue just very cloudy and misty weather and the hike wouldn’t have yielded a view so we just went back and did the tourist thingy at the Dam. The area is as expected, very clean and well maintained. The little time on the AT was nice too, exactly what I expected. Hopefully I’ll be back for a section hike.

This is a strenuous hike, especially the Lost Cove trail but the Shuckstack fire tower's view makes it all worth it.

we started this loop walking from the dam towards the trail head. mostly uphill towards the tower, after awhile you can see it in the distance. very strenuous climb up if you're not in shape. at the tower the trail curves right to the lost cove trail which is mostly all downhill, a beautiful creek runs across most of the rest of the trail back. some parts you have to get wet. I'm considering buying trekking poles after this hike, the way down was wet and covered in leaves, very easy to loose footing with the steep downhill. it rained the entire day, and the leaves were all down so I imagine it looked more beautiful and alive in the summer. definitely a hike I'm going to redo in the summer months, didn't see any wildlife, but there was signs of bears in the areas. the last leg of the trail was the lake shore trail, mostly flat was a nice break! then toward the end some uphill, a few views of the fontana lake. the lake shore trail has a few old cars scattered along it, very neat. overall just the tower was worth the hike. will do it again, and would recommend it.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Thursday, July 06, 2017