Trails in the Montreat Trailhead Area

Here is a list of all trails in the Montreat Trailhead area.

Each trail has its own printable page with all the information and links, including (where available):

  • directions to the starting point
  • difficulty
  • length
  • elevation change
  • a map
  • photos from along the way, and
  • a detailed description and trail directions.

For general information about the Montreat trailhead, see the Montreat Trailhead page.

Need to find trails by another method? Go back to Trails.

Appalachian Way Trail

Moderate
  • Starting at the end of the road with the same name, this gravel road trail climbs to end at Sourwood Gap, where it intersects East Ridge trail and Old Mitchell Toll Road.
  • 0.7mi, Climbs Moderately, Few Obstacles

Big Piney Ridge Trail

More Difficult
  • Climbs steeply from the parking area at the end of Suwannee Drive to the West Ridge trail. Passes through switchbacks in places; some spots require rock scrambling where the trail passes directly over outcrops. Passes through the ridge's eponymous...
  • 1.6mi, Climbs Steeply, Very Rough

Buck Gap Trail

Moderate
  • Starting behind the shelter on the Old Trestle Road, this short trail ends at Buck Gap where it intersects the East Ridge trail.
  • 0.2mi, Climbs Gently, Few Obstacles

East Ridge Trail

More Difficult
  • Follows the ridge up and over Lookout Mountain, Boggs Bunion, Brushy Mountain and Rocky Head. Ends at Long Gap. here are a few steep sections and several good viewpoints along the trail.
  • 2.48mi, Hilly, Some Obstacles

Gate Trail

Easy
  • The trail follows Flat Creek, and has many informative signs and nice benches on which to rest. This trail as an extension of the Nature Trail and includes "Elizabeth's Path", which was named for Elizabeth Peterson who loved to walk along this creek....
  • 1.0mi, Climbs Gently, Some Obstacles

Graybeard Trail

More Difficult
  • Crosses Flat Creek on a bridge and goes upstream on a steady uphill course. Past the Harry Bryan trail, the trail enters the Boggs Wilderness and climbs along an old roadbed. It crosses Flat Creek again, turns into a purpose-built singletrack trail...
  • 4.4mi, Climbs Steeply, Moderately Rough

Harry Bryan Trail

Easy
  • A gentle up-and-down hike through the woods of Bell Forest to Flat Creek and a bridge at the Graybeard trail. Makes a nice, easy 1.8 mi loop when combined with Graybeard and/or Julia Woodward/Sanctuary trails.
  • 0.4mi, Few Hills, Some Obstacles

Hickory Ridge Trail

Easy
  • Travels from the summit of Lookout Mountain to the Old Mitchell Toll Road. The Rattlesnake Mountain trail is 180 ft south and passes onto Ridgecrest Conference Center property.
  • 0.2mi, Climbs Gently, Some Obstacles

Julia Woodward Trail

Easy
  • A short hike to a scenic spot on the creek with a historical plaque and large boulders.
  • 0.7mi, Few Hills, Some Obstacles

Lookout Trail

More Difficult
  • Climbs moderately through a nice cove before a few switchbacks on new stretches of trail up to the Old Trestle Road. Climbs steeply beyond Trestle Road along the ridge with stairs in places. A few stretches just before the overlook have exposed rocks...
  • 0.6mi, Climbs Steeply, Moderately Rough

Lower Piney Trail

Moderate
  • A traverse around the foot of Big Piney Ridge. From the south trailhead at Harmony Road, this beautifully built trail winds along the rocky mountainside, climbs through a few switchbacks, and passes a couple of nice viewpoints and lichen-encrusted...
  • 1.3mi, Climbs Moderately, Some Obstacles

Old Mitchell Toll Road Trail

Moderate
  • Follows a tourist road which once provided motorized access to the summit of Mount Mitchell from Black Mountain after the logging operations and tourist railroad had winded down. The toll road largely followed the old railroad's path, but the town of...
  • mi, Climbs Gently, Some Obstacles

Old Trestle Road Trail

Moderate
  • This is a historic logging and tourist railroad grade that once went from Black Mountain to Mount Mitchell in the early 1900's. It is called the "Trestle Road" because of the three trestles it once needed to span creeks along the route. Between...
  • mi, Climbs Gently, Some Obstacles

Rainbow Mountain Trail

More Difficult
  • Starts across Flat Creek from the Montreat gate; use the bridge for the Gate trail to access the trailhead. Very steep in places. Passes over one of the two peaks of Rainbow Mountain before dropping down to join Rainbow Road.
  • 0.7mi, Climbs Moderately, Moderately Rough

Rainbow Road Trail

Easy
  • The trail follows an old roadbed for most of its length. The trail ends at the gap where Old Trestle Road and Old Mitchell Toll Road split near the Lookout trail.
  • 1.9mi, Climbs Gently, Few Obstacles

Rainbow Traverse Trail

Moderate
  • Tight, twisty purpose-built trail passes through laurel and rhododendron thickets, with gnarly trees including Carolina hemlock and shortleaf pine arching overhead. Has some steep ups and downs. Passes an overlook with a limited view across the...
  • 0.2mi, Hilly, Moderately Rough

Rocky Head Trail

Moderate
  • Passes the old water holding ponds that were used for an electrical generation plant in the early 1900's. The trail heads at the summit of Rocky Head Mountain and the intersection with the East Ridge trail. There is a nice view of the valley at the...
  • 0.9mi, Climbs Steeply, Some Obstacles

Rocky Knob Trail

Moderate
  • Requires a long hike on the Old Mitchell Toll Road to reach the trailhead. Faint path at times. Ends on a rocky summit with spectacular views of the Asheville Watershed. **Note**: this trail is not Montreat property, but has been purchased and...
  • mi, Climbs Steeply, Moderately Rough

Sanctuary Trail

Easy
  • Follows the steep gorge carved out by Little Slaty Creek. After crossing Upward Way, the trail continues upstream past the site of Montreat's old waterworks, crosses the stream on a bridge, then climbs to its terminus with the Julia Woodward trail,...
  • 0.3mi, Few Hills, Some Obstacles

Stomping Knob Trail

More Difficult
  • Trailhead is located on Harmony Road and ends with the junction of the West Ridge Trail a the summit of Little Piney Mountain, also known as Stomping Knob. The trail is very steep in some places and passes two old still sites, one of which is under a...
  • 1.2mi, Climbs Steeply, Some Obstacles

Walker's Knob Trail

Easy
  • Short path near the summit of the ridge to the summit of Walker's Knob with a fantastic view south and west of Montreat, Black Mountain and the Swannanoa Valley. Has a few rocks and roots, and a small climb at the end, but it is overall very easy....
  • 0.2mi, Few Hills, Some Obstacles

West Ridge Trail

More Difficult
  • Traverses the summit of the Seven Sisters ridge from Stomping Knob to the summit of Big Slaty Mountain (False Graybeard), not far from the summit of Graybeard. Somewhat rough and steep in places. No views to speak of except through the trees in the...
  • 3.0mi, Hilly, Moderately Rough