Hiking in Western North Carolina

Welcome to the Appalachian mountain region of Western North Carolina - a haven in the Land of Sky for enthusiasts of outdoor recreation!

Some of the highest peaks in the East, surrounded by vast areas of wilderness and miles and miles of trails, invite visitors from all over the world. And even locals looking for an easy day hike find the area irresistible.

Why take an expensive vacation thousands of miles away when a world-renowned outdoor playground is right next door?

HikeWNC.info is your on-line hiking guide for North Carolina's Appalachian mountain region, containing all of the information you need to make your next trip complete. We aim to provide guidebook quality information that you can use in your outdoor persuits. Have fun browsing and hiking!

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Have questions, comments, criticisms, suggestions, trail info, or errors to report? Contact us and we'll be back in touch with you! Or use one of these other ways to get in touch.

WNCOutdoors.info Blog

On This Site


The Trails section of our site is the gateway to information about individual trails in Western North Carolina. Search for a trail by name; each trail has its own page with all the details, a map (where available), and a place to leave ratings and comments.

Featured Trails: Estatoe, Elk Knob, Commissary, Harper Creek...


Our Trailheads are hubs where several trails and hikes are clustered together or in a network. Each represents an area where you could spend a day or more hiking, without driving too far - or at all!.

Featured Trailheads: Pisgah National Forest, Nantahala National Forest, Blue Ridge Parkway, DuPont State Forest, Catawba Falls (New!)...

Best Hikes

Your guide to the Best Hikes in Western North Carolina, combining individual trails into a fully guided experience. We feel like these trips are most representative of the great hiking that Western North Carolina has to offer!

Featured Hikes: Toms Creek Falls, DuPont State Recreational Forest Waterfalls Tour, Rattlesnake Lodge, Mount Mitchell...


This section covers all of the maps we have available for you to view, download, and purchase, including maps of the Trailheads and Best Hikes above, and interactive Google Maps with downloadable GPS data.

Featured Maps: Interactive Map of Trailheads, USGS Topographic Maps, Nat. Geo Trails Illustrated™ Series...

Photo Gallery

Browse through photos of the trails, views, waterfalls, and mountains in the region. Links to these galleries are provided from Trailheads and Hikes as well.

Featured Galleries: Looking Glass Rock, Sam Knob, Whiteside Mountain, Panthertown Valley, Crabtree Falls...

Area Information

Get general area information to round out your trip, including things to consider when planning a hike, information about places to stay and outfitters, and ways to get involved in the area's hiking community.

Area Information Pages: General Considerations, Camping/Lodging, Hiking Outfitters, Weather/Climate, Clubs and Organizations...

Current Inspiration:
Spring green and wildflowers on Grandfather Mountain.

Site Updates & News

Courthouse Creek Road Bridge Project Delayed

Courthouse Creek Road (FS 140), which leads to Courthouse Falls among other attractions in the Pisgah Ranger District off Hwy. 215, has been closed for a while now due to a bridge replacement project. It was originally scheduled to reopen this month, but the Forest Service has announced a delay  Read more »

Posted on November 22, 2015 11:54 am

Panthertown’s Cold Mountain Trailhead to be Closed, Expanded

Edit: As of August 7, the parking area is finished and open again. Enjoy! Panthertown Valley’s Cold Mountain trailhead, providing the best access to some of the area’s favorite features such as Schoolhouse Falls, will close on Monday morning for construction. When it reopens? A proper parking area! Until now,  Read more »

Posted on August 1, 2015 10:59 am

Tsali User Group Schedule is Changing

For the first time I can remember, the schedule for which users can use which trails at the Tsali Recreation Area, located on Fontana Lake near Bryson City, NC, is changing. The press release says the schedule will be posted to their web site, but I’m not seeing it yet.  Read more »

Posted on April 25, 2015 10:24 am

Panthertown Valley Hike: Blackrock Overlook and Granny Burrell Falls

I have been meaning to check out the Carlton’s Way trail on the north side of the Panthertown Valley, a recent addition to the list of official trails in the valley and one I’d not been on yet. It fit the bill for what we were looking for in a  Read more »

Posted on March 24, 2015 8:59 pm

Shope Creek, Revisited – For Even Bigger Surprises

In a post last week, I shared some small “discoveries” my family and I made while hiking in the Shope Creek section of Pisgah National Forest near the Riceville community east of Asheville. Ever since that hike, I couldn’t stop thinking about going back (with my real camera) and getting  Read more »

Posted on February 10, 2015 8:54 am

Shope Creek Offers Small Surprises

Saturday, I found myself on one of those hikes that has no preparation, no particular destination, nor even an expectation of what I might like to find. I took the family out to the Shope Creek section of Pisgah National Forest, only hoping to get a little exercise and enjoy  Read more »

Posted on February 5, 2015 10:34 pm

Collier Cove Nature Preserve Trip Report

I’d heard about some new trails on a Buncombe County property that I wanted to check out. So January 4, 2015, when I got the opportunity, I headed out there with the family. What we found was a nice little trail network perfect for exercise trips when you don’t have  Read more »

Posted on January 4, 2015 10:52 am

Archived news and more articles are on the WNCOutdoors.info Blog.

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