Appalachian Trail

Cherokee National Forest, North Carolina 28664

Elevation Gain1,819ft
Trailhead Elevation2,095ft
Elevation Min/Max1959/2180ft
Elevation Start/End2095/2095ft

Appalachian Trail

Appalachian Trail is a hiking trail in North Carolina and Tennessee. It is within Cherokee National Forest. It is 93.0 miles long and begins at 2,095 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 5.8 miles with a total elevation gain of 1,819 feet. Yellow Mountain (elevation 5,164 feet), Locust Knob (elevation 4,006 feet), Jane Bald (elevation 5,781 feet), Little Bald Knob (elevation 4,455 feet), Little Hump Mountain (elevation 5,207 feet), Hump Mountain (elevation 5,538 feet), Round Bald (elevation 5,807 feet), Little Hump Mountain (elevation 5,453 feet), Yellow Mountain (elevation 5,371 feet), Cloudland Mountain (elevation 6,178 feet), Jane Bald (elevation 5,807 feet), Beartown Mountain (elevation 5,492 feet), Little Rock Knob (elevation 4,918 feet), Piney Ball (elevation 4,226 feet), McQueen Knob (elevation 3,862 feet), Piney Bald (elevation 4,190 feet), White Rocks Mountain (elevation 4,249 feet), Locust Knob (elevation 4,012 feet), Round Bald (elevation 5,804 feet), Little Bald Knob (elevation 4,459 feet), and McQueen Knob (elevation 3,832 feet), the Moreland Gap Shelter, Double Springs Shelter, Holiday Inn, Stan Murray Shelter, Roan High Knob Shelter, Iron Mountain Shelter, Vandeventer Shelter, Watauga Lake Shelter, Laurel Fork Shelter, Apple House Shelter, Cherry Gap Shelter, and Abingdon Gap Shelter shelters, the Isaacs Cemetery (elevation 3,602 feet) grave yard, the Coltens Cliff (elevation 5,991 feet) cliff, the Carvers Gap parking, the Cherokee National Forest forest, the High Point Church (elevation 3,488 feet) place of worship, the Wautauga Dam attraction, the White Rock Lookout Tower (elevation 4,098 feet) tower, and the Watauga Lake (elevation 1,959 feet) reservoir can be seen along the trail. There are also restrooms along the trail. The trail ends near Big Ball (elevation 4,114 feet). This trail connects with the following: Appalachian Trail and Howard Harrison Road.

Appalachian Trail Professional Review and Guide

"Each spring, hundreds of people hoist heavy packs onto their backs and strain down a misty trail, intent on accomplishing the most difficult task of their lives: going the length of the Appalachian Mountains. The footpath links a tree-covered mountaintop in Georgia and a rock-capped summit in central Maine.

The trail winds for 300 miles across western North Carolina, home to some of its highest elevations and most spectacular scenery. Nearly 70 years old, the Appalachian Trail (AT) was the first organized recreational avenue to wilderness. Today there are many long-distance trails, but none equals the AT."

Appalachian Trail Reviews

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Hiked a beautiful section of the AT in May, we started in Hot Springs NC and hiked Nobo. The weather was great, it rained a little bit not bad at all. The overlook by Howard’s Rock was a beautiful sight.
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Spectacular trail! I loved it... it was testing, steep, cold, highly exposed, and the views were astounding. I did the trail the way said was the hardest and then back the other way to get back to my car (26+ miles including the side trail to grassy ridge). It was a great combination of exposed (windy!) grassy ridges/summits and colorful (fall foliage) gap forest walks. I don't reccomend camping on grassy ridge. I was stubborn and wanted to pitch my tent with a view and was rewarded with 50+mph winds and pelting rain through the night. Fortunatley my tent was fully guyed out and i didn't have any problems. I fully reccomend this trail at least in one direction and if your up for a longer/harder, but very rewarding hike do it both ways. The views looking back along your route on the return trip are quite rewarding.

Appalachian Trail Photos

Trail Information

Cherokee National Forest
Nearby City
Cherokee National Forest
Appalachian Ranger District, 632 Manor Road, Mars Hill 28754; (828) 689-9694; Appalachian Trail Conservancy:
Local Contacts
USGS Carvers Gap, Elk Park, and White Rocks Mountain; Appalachian Trail Conservancy AT map and guide
Local Maps