Hiking in Western North Carolina

Current Inspiration:
Fall Color in the Flat Laurel Creek valley. Black Balsam Road has reopened!

The mountain region of Western North Carolina is a haven for outdoor recreation enthusiasts.

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. But 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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On This Site

Trails

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...

Trailheads

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...

Maps

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...

Site Updates & News

WNC Waterfalls App for Android Released

We’re happy to announce that our new WNC Waterfalls App for Android phones and tablets is ready for download! Starting today, you can visit 50 of the area’s popular waterfalls using this guide on your Android device. It’s packed with the same information we provide here on the web – but with no data connection needed after installation. Photos are provided  Read more »

Posted on September 30, 2014 7:24 am

No, the Forest Service is Not Planning to Charge You $1500 to Photograph the Wilderness

Put away the pitchforks, folks. After reading some of the recent horribly misleading media coverage of a proposal by the US Forest Service, you might think that members of the media (down to – and yes, including! – us lowly bloggers) are about to be banned from all National Forest lands. You  Read more »

Posted on September 25, 2014 1:15 pm

15 Miles of Multi-Use Trails Open Saturday at Lake James State Park

Western North Carolina is about to have yet another trail system for mountain biking at one of its beautiful mountain destinations! Lake James State Park will soon be open to bikes with 15 miles of new multi-use trail on the north side of the lake, which are in the park’s Paddy’s Creek  Read more »

Posted on June 5, 2014 10:28 pm

Black Mountain Trail Needs Your Help!

The lower section of the Black Mountain trail – below its northern intersection with the Thrift Cove trail – will be closed for at least two weeks while the “Big Dig 2014″ trail work project gets underway. The project, which is being headed up by the Forest Service in conjunction with Pisgah  Read more »

Posted on May 20, 2014 9:28 pm

Courthouse Creek Road closed through the summer

The US Forest Service has announced that Courthouse Creek Road, FS 140, will be closed until late October to replace a low-water crossing. This road has been the subject of extensive damage and repairs in the past thanks to flood events, and the Forest Service aims to build a bridge  Read more »

Posted on April 23, 2014 8:57 pm

Hike in to Graveyard Fields now to avoid the crowds

By now, you’ve probably heard the news that the Graveyard Fields parking area and trailhead along the Blue Ridge Parkway will be closed for the next 11 weeks while the parking area is expanded and restroom facilities are added. It’s been on just about every news outlet repeatedly, which is why  Read more »

Posted on April 22, 2014 1:54 pm

Santeetlah Lake Trail Now Open

Tucked away near Robbinsville, NC in Graham County is Santeetlah Lake, a gem of a reservoir with a name I’ve yet figured out how to pronounce correctly. The lake is fed by clear, cold-water streams such as Snowbird Creek and one with the same name as the lake, flowing out of  Read more »

Posted on April 17, 2014 3:43 pm

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

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