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Crest of the Black Mtns - Mt. Mitchell to Potato Hill

RSVP's for this hike open on Tuesday June 18th at 10 PM. Mount Mitchell to Potato Hill & back.

Location: Mount Mitchell State Park & Black Mountain Crest

Distance: 6 miles

Difficulty: Difficult

Hike Type: Out & back

Trail Condition: Fair

Trailhead Description: Parking lot at Mount Mitchell

Highlights: This hike will be along the most rugged & scenic trail in the Black Mountains, the Black Mountain Crest Trail. We’ll follow the ridge from Mount Mitchell to Potato Hill & then return on the same trail. Starting with Mount Mitchell we’ll climb Mount Craig, Big Tom, Cattail Peak, and end at Potato Hill - all at elevations greater than 6000 feet.

This hike will be on the timeworn Black Mountains (rocks dating back to 1.1 billion years). Very few trails like this east of the Mississippi.

We will meet at the Folk Art Center at 8:30 AM and depart by 8:45. It is approximately a one-hour drive to Mt. Mitchell. We will start the hike around 10:00 and return about 2:00 and be back to the Folk Art Center about 3:00.  These are just time estimates so plan accordingly

The climate of the Black Mountains is more like that of Canada than North Carolina. You should wear appropriate clothing and carry proper gear as the high altitude makes the climate of Mount Mitchell chilly, even in summer.

Dogs must be on a leash at all times in the State Park & you need to carry water for your dog, since there is no water along the trail.

Did I mention this trail was tough!? I rate this one difficult from end to end, with very little, if anything less than difficult in between...rocky, lots of roots, uneven, up, down, hand over hand at times and narrow in lots of spots HOWEVER, this is a great trail & one of the best in the Southern Appalachians!!!





Click on any image for larger view.
















Mt. Mitchell State Park Map









Driving Directions: Mount Mitchell State Park is located 33 miles north of Asheville off the Blue Ridge Parkway (BRP) at mile marker #355. From the BRP Folk Art Center Asheville, take the Blue Ridge Parkway north to mile marker #355 and turn left onto NC 128, which leads to the park. Take NC 128 until it ends at the parking lot for Mount Mitchell.

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  • Jeff H.

    Thanks for finding me in the woods. We'll have to do lunch again sometime soon.

    1 · June 23, 2013

  • Betsy

    Gorgeous views and a beautiful trail.

    1 · June 23, 2013

  • Tom S.

    Great hike with great views. Thanks everyone. Good group.

    1 · June 22, 2013

  • Debra

    Great hiking with everybody. Be sure to check for ticks. One was found on me. Thanks Tom for an intense workout that I needed.

    June 22, 2013

  • Lilian

    Will meet you st the park. Am 10 min behind you.

    June 22, 2013

  • Lilian

    Got lost so running late. Ill catch up

    June 22, 2013

  • dave s

    Where will your green Blazer be parked Tom?

    June 21, 2013

    • Tom S.

      Parking lot to the left I guess I'd describe it. Near the entrance of the Art Center. You'll find us.

      June 21, 2013

  • Lilian

    I'm coming from Hendo, just let me know if any of you need a ride north to the Folk Art Center. Coming with 1 small dog.

    June 19, 2013

10 went

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