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MEETUP LOCATION: THERE IS NO MEETUP SCHEDULED AT THE FOLK ARTS CENTER. SOFTWARE DOES NOT ALLOW ME TO CHANGE. WE will meet at the dirt / gravel parking area about 5 miles north of the Folk Art Center just just as you are approaching the Ox Creek Road intersection with the Blue Ridge Parkway (the gravel pull-over on the right) to form car pools. DISTANCE: about 11 miles. ELEVATION GAIN: Level 8* hike elevation gain between 2,400 to 2,700' TWO WAY HIKE: We will subdivide into two groups which will begin at opposite ends of the trail. Group 1 going North to South and group 2 going South-to-North, crossing on the hike. Both hikes will end with cars parked thereby avoiding a shuttle. The North-to-South group begins where the MST crosses NC 128 (road to Mount Mitchell) and continues on the MST South to the Craggy Pinnacle parking area and hike the pinnacle trail for its elevated 360 degree views before ending. The South to North group will begin at the Craggy pinnacle parking area hike the pinnacle trail experiencing the early morning mist rising from the mountain tops (picture) then take the MST north to the NC 128 crossing. THE HIKE includes a high mountain ridge line trail at about 6,200 feet (similar to the Mt. Mitchel Crest trail) with the deep woods forest scent of balsams, lichens, ferns, and mosses (picture) and distant views of the Asheville's water shed and opposing mountains crossing the Parkway at Walker's Knob Overlook. The trail is well defined, steep and rugged in places (including some steps) and several open meadows populated with rhododendrons, a variety of early mountain wildflowers and beautiful mountain views. This higher mountain hike will have cooler temps and often breezy conditions conditions,... perfect for the warmer days. PACE: Fitness hikes proceed at a steady pace adjusting for steepness of grade and regrouping at trail intersections and as needed. PLEASE BE IN SHAPE AND CAPABLE HIKING THIS DISTANCE WITH ELEVATION. This is not a hike for beginners. If you're interests include outdoor fitness hiking, cardio conditioning and endurance we would love to have you join us. DOGS; Dogs are welcome as long as they are trail friendly. We cross the Parkway at two locations and there is a walk along the busy Parkway shoulder from the pinnacle parking lot to access the MST. Some early spring water is present (as of Sunday) but plan for limited water source on this trail for dogs. Trail head is a 35 miles or approximately an 40 minute drive (depending on Parkway traffic). Money: If you are a rider please bring $4.00 to contribute to your driver. Dog owners are encouraged to participate as drivers. Wear appropriate shoes, BRING ENOUGH WATER for a 4 hour hike, a snack and a camera. Most of this hike will be under canopy, but there is exposure along the open meadows and overlooks. https://www.relive.cc/view/g22542889548?r=embed-site">Relive **HIKE LEVELS: LEVEL 1; elevation gain up to 600 feet, LEVEL 2; between 600'-900', LEVEL 3; 900' to 1200'. LEVEL 4; 1200' to 1,500'. LEVEL 5; 1,500' to 1,800'. LEVEL 6; 1,800' to 2,100'. LEVEL 7; 2,100' to 2,400'. LEVEL; 8* 2,400' to 2,700'. LEVEL 9; 2,700' to 3,000' LEVEL 10; 3,000' to 4,000'... ULTIMATE (killer) HIKES; between 12 and 17 miles with an elevation gain from 4,000' to 6,000+ feet.
Details Please read the ENTIRE write-up before signing up. This is a moderate paced 2+hr., 6.1 - 6.5 mile hike, depending on the loop we hike. Plan for traffic when driving--allow at least 10 extra minutes, because it is rush hour, and I-240 and I-26 are often very slow. Sammy and I are mixing things up a little this year. My conditioning is not up to speed this year and I will be doing a slower version of my previous "fast paced" hikes. This will be a steady 2+ hour hike of around 6 1/2 mile hike. Sammy may combine with this hike some weeks, or run other versions. Wednesday night is very busy at Bent Creek so we may try other nights. Any way we do it, we will try to run some version of an after work weekday hike. No need to RSVP "No" or "not attending" unless changing from a "Yes." If you need to change your RSVP, please change it before 5:45 PM, otherwise I won't get it because there is no internet service at the trailhead. If you need to contact me between 5:45 and 6:00 PM, texting works best. Please read the full description before RSVPing, and only sign up if you are sure you can go. Thanks in advance for keeping your RSVP up-to-date and not being a last-minute cancellation or no-show. This is an ongoing issue with Meetups and often keeps people on waitlists from being able to attend our hikes. Hard Times Trailhead near Lake Powhatan Rec Area Follow signs off of Brevard Rd (Rt 191) to Lake Powhatan Rec Area. The road is Bent Creek Ranch Rd. to Wesley Branch Rd. Follow signs to Lake Powhatan until you come to Hard Times Trailhead on your left, 2.5 miles. It is very clearly marked. Parking is very limited at the trailhead but there’s a paved pull-off just before the Hard Times trailhead and more parking just beyond at the Ledford Branch trailhead. We will access Bent Creek forest by way of Hard Times Trail and do some combination of loop and out and back. Arrive at the trailhead BY 6:00. We are unable to wait for latecomers. I leave it up to you all to organize this. This hike is intended as a workout hike for people to get in condition to do weekend hikes and we move at a moderatet pace - around 3 miles an hour or around 20-22 minutes per mile. Please no slower. As such, we do not take breaks, take in views, or snap photos along the way. Please make sure you're able to keep up with the group. • Wear closed-toed footwear appropriate for hiking. The trail will consist of dirt, rocks, roots, mud, mulch, and the occasional group of mountain bikers. • Bring plenty of water or other hydrating fluids. • Bring rain gear if a chance of rain is in the forecast. • Dogs on leashes the whole time are welcome. Please make sure to keep your RSVP up-to-date. You don't want to be "that person" who cancels last minute or no-shows and keeps someone from joining in if there's a waitlist. Thanks for your consideration - it is appreciated! We may go to Papa's & Beer afterwards for fun conversation and electrolyte replenishment - and all who hike are welcome to join in! Feel free to post questions not covered in this description in the comments section. Cell phone service is very limited in Bent Creek. Texting usually works, but you can't get internet. Thanks - we'll see you on the trail!
Hike south of the BRP from Bent Creek Gap Road into the Mills River area, and then north of the BRP over Ferrin Knob. Some rocky footing and fairly steep climbs up Trace Ridge and Ferrin Knob. Starting from BRP milepost 400.3: Walk down the National Forest Rd for 1-3/4 miles to a right on Spencer Gap trail; then up Trace Ridge trail for a short distance to the BRP. Pickup the Mountain-to-Sea Trail on the north side of the BRP opposite Beaverdam Gap Overlook. Climb Ferrin Knob, and return to the trailhead. Type: loop. Ascent: 1225’. Max elev: 4000’. Avg moving pace: 2.6 mph. Difficulty (1=effortless, 10=hard): 5. Dogs: welcome if well-behaved, subject to area-specific restrictions. Trailhead: BRP milepost 400.3 at Bent Creek Gap Rd. Directions from Waffle House (9.3 miles): Left (south) on NC-191 Brevard Rd for 2.1 miles; right onto the BRP ramp, then right (south) on the BRP for 7.2 miles. Trailhead will be on the left at milepost 400.3. There are a couple of parking spaces along the BRP, or drive down the ramp to Bent Creek Gap Rd under the BRP, where there are more spaces. Est. return to Waffle House: 12:30 p.m. PLEASE DON’T SIGNUP IF YOU’RE UNCOMFORTABLE WITH THE DISTANCE, ASCENT, OR PACE. PLEASE UPDATE YOUR RSVP TO “NO” IF YOU SIGNUP, BUT CHANGE YOUR MIND.
Interested in doing a challenging rewarding local thru hike? The Foothills Trail Travel and offers 3 different states (SC, NC, & GA). If you have any questions, feel free to chime in. Shuttle Vehicles or Get a Shuttle Driver? Open to suggestions Day 1: 10-15 miles Start @ Oconee State Park. We will be hiking 12 to 13 miles each day Day 2: 10-13 miles Stay @ TBD Day 3: 10-13 miles Stay @ TBD Day 4: 10-13 miles Stay @ TBD Day 5: 10-13 miles Stay @ TBD Day 6: 10-13 miles Finsh @ Table Rock State Park (It's 78 Miles, but your Miles may vary based on the Camp Designated). Important Notes: Parking Fees $5 per Day No Resupply Area Plenty of Water along the Trail Camp at "Designated Campsite" or risk of Camping on the Trail. If you have any question please don't Hesitate to reach out to me . I can send you a list for Backpacking gear. I will be carrying less then 25 lbs for the whole trip. We would need to carpool if not I have someone that can drop us off in Ocanne. Hope you can join me on this beautiful trip it will be spectacular. Well behaved dogs are welcome. I will have my Pure Serbian husky Backpacking with me.