Sam Knob Summit Trail
At A Glance
This short trail starts at the Black Balsam parking area at the end of Black Balsam Road. It follows an old road bed through a mixed, high elevation forest on a level path to a big staircase that makes easy work out of the descent over a once highly eroded section of trail. It then passes through a big, pleasant, open wildlife field before ending at a T junction with the Sam Knob trail.
Perhaps strangely, this trail itself does NOT go to the summit of Sam Knob. The older Sam Knob trail does, but it starts off of Flat Laurel Creek trail and winds its way up past the far end of the field mentioned above to the actual summit. Take a right at the T to reach the summit.
I believe the name came to be as follows: when people discovered that this old road through the field was a shortcut from the parking area to the middle of the Sam Knob trail, everyone started going that way instead of taking the Sam Knob trail. The Forest Service eventually put up a sign labeled "To Sam Knob Summit" at the start of the road before it became an official trail. Later, when this route was added to the official Forest Service trail network, they dropped the "To" and kept "Sam Knob Summit". So it's now more of a directional sign than a literally accurate name.
And that's the kind of thing that led to so many bizarre road and trail naming schemes in the mountains!
All Photos from the Trail
Download GPS Data
Click on a route, trail, or point on the map and select the GPS Data tab to download its data.
KML (Google Earth)
KML is the main file type used by Google Earth. If you have Google Earth installed, clicking the KML link should open the trail or point directly in Google Earth for viewing. This is the native file format used by Google Earth, but many other map applications can use and understand KML as well, so if you're not sure which one to download, KML is a good bet.
The GPX format stands for GPS Exchange - a free, open, XML format for exchanging GPS and map data. GPX is compatible with Google Earth, many other mapping programs, and most GPS devices (such as Garmin). Load the file directly into your GPS to help find your way on your next trip!
GeoJSON is a newer, lightweight data exchange format which can be used to quickly share map data and may have a smaller size than KML or GPX. Many professional mapping and GIS applications support the GeoJSON format.
About the Map
Base layers provided by OpenStreetMap, the US Geological Survey, the US Forest Service, and NC OneMap. Base layer images are subject to the respective copyright policies of their owners. Base layers may not be available at all times due to system maintenance or outages.
WNCOutdoors Base Layer
The WNCOutdoors Base layer is provided by WNCOutdoors.info. It is licensed by Creative Commons Attribution 3.0.
Trail and Marker Overlays
Trail layers and downloadable data are all original works created by WNCOutdoors with guidance from a variety of sources, including ensembles of our own GPS tracks, user contributed GPS tracks, official maps and GIS data from government agencies, and field observations. WNCOutdoors data is made freely available under the Open Database License - you are free to copy and use it for any purpose under the terms of that license (summary).
- Hover over a trail to see it highlighted. Helps to see start and end points for an individual trail.
- Scroll and zoom the map before printing, and that view will persist into the printed image.
- Click a trail for more details and to download it individually.
Average Rating: (rated 0 times)
Rate It Now: