Their ultimate survival remains to be seen in the face of pollution and climate change. It would be a long day with about 4 hours to reach the camp at the bottom, maybe 2.5-3 hours to climb and 2.5 hour to comes back down and 4 hours drive home. Wear hiking BOOTS that are waterproof, there are so many wet/swampy spots and small creeks to hop. My background is marathons/ultras/trail running. Mount Mitchell State Park. Black mountain Campground. After achieving the top of Long Arm Ridge, the trail turns west and ascends its spine, swinging back and forth across it in places. Everything else I carried up and down with me for nothing (except the bottle of Gatorade witch I decided to drink it on my way down just for not carrying it on my back.) They are a couple but not where you need them. I am planning to climb with 2 boys 6 and 10 years old, fit, but with little experience. a 9-hour round trip from the campground to summit and back is totally reasonable, i've done it myself. But it was definitely starting to get hot by the time we reached the campground again. 18 minutes. Native Red Spruce and Fraser Fir soon take back over the species list. Descent was around 2:10. . But it's still a great hike. We are semi-active 26 year olds, and we only brought our CamelBak packs with us (not heavy camping gear). Allow a full day with plenty of time to spare if it's your first trip. Mitchell on Sunday with a friend (both of us are guys in mid-30's in decent shape). John said: My experience was very similar to rcamero1. One good option to lessen the strain, but still make for quite an achievement, would be to leave a vehicle shuttle at the summit parking area and hike up, then avoid the impact on the knees by driving back down. One of them has been known to conk out on long hikes but he didn't complain at all. Just for kicks, and to get back to the “fit” guy with the yoga chick that wrote the review down here, it took me exactly 2 hours and 15 minutes from the trailhead to the summit. c'est la vie. Thanks if any have this list. Mitchell definitely lived up to expectations. (Bad, bad form!! Should I pack in my snowshoes to be safe? Total Length: 5.7 miles The park has a small family campground; however, the hiking trails are the big lure. It took me only 2.5 hours to get to the 5.5 mile marker. Black Mountain Campground sits in the shadow of Mt. In the end, it wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be. This sign is right after you cross under the power lines a few times. I would have probably fallen on the way down 3 times had it not been for the poles. It took us a total of 8 hours with 1 of the hours total for rest periods. BOOTS - Gore Tex or waterproof boots were essential Saturday. My only advice is get an early start and don't do this trail if you're not in good shape. Looking forward to coming back in the spring, incredible camping spots once you get to the Buncombe Horse Range Trail & other great campsites located all throughout the 5.6 mile artfully crafted trail. Allocate 4.5 hours of strenuous hiking to reach the summit and 3.5 hours to descend. Michelle Saleeby said: Can you bring dogs on this trail? Turn right on S. Toe River Road just past the golf course; there are signs for the Black Mountain Campground. Next, you'll reach the intersection with the Balsam Nature Trail, which leaves to the right. There are a few lookouts along power lines, but also beautiful forest views and some huge trees. Unfortunately, with the rain, comes fog and it completely ruined the view at the top because...you can't see anything. All told, I took about a 1/2 hour in breaks on the way up. We ended up getting snowed on for about 10 minutes and then it turned to rain. Wish we were here longer to do more trails in the area. We got on the trail around 9:45, with the temperatures in the 50's. Had rained heavily on Saturday 7/16, so a bit slippery but mostly noticed this on the way down. Beautiful! The temperature was around 70 when I started this time, and the sky was cloudless. How does Mt. I'm planning on doing this section again in a week or so with my grandchildren. I'm so upset. 20 minutes. Truly a peaceful hike as we only saw one other hiker on the way up and down. I must also note I met my ride at the top & didn't have to hike down- this was planned as it was the last day of a family vacation & everyone was ready to get home- not wait on me even longer. GPX is compatible with Google Earth, Also, bear in mind when the park closes because there are gates all over the place and, I suppose, hypothetically you could wind up stuck on the mountain (though I'm not sure about that). Trail was very wet with running water on the trail in several places, lots of slippery rocks and roots, I slipped and fell once cutting and scraping my right elbow with in the first couple of miles so I slowed down and was more careful to avoid wet rocks as much as possible. Unfortunately, S. Toe River Road is a gravel road completely unmarked on the BRP. For comparison, Mt. They asked about this route and I told them I did not know it and thought they should go back up the way they came to avoid getting lost. The spruce forest near the top is beautiful. If panoramic views are what you came for, hit the 6-mile Mount Mitchell Trail. We had Breakfast, very Good and very reasonably priced. I'm not as good at descending, but I thought there were too many roots and slippery rocks to not descend slow. Going up is the easy part, as you're not so tired. It took me about 7 hours total though I was unprepared in terms of footwear (just had my trailrunners). We hiked the Old Mount Mitchell trail to the top of Mount Mitchell. Would love to hear your thoughts. The GPX format stands for GPS Exchange - a free, open, XML format for exchanging GPS and map data. It's also not exactly flat, as we found we were constantly awaking with our feet pushing through the nylon at the bottom of the tent. Tom Berkshire said: I completed the hike on July 9, 2015 - one year to the day that I had my hip replaced - so this was a personal challenge. Mitchell since Oct. 31, 2012 as my 70th birthday present to me but the weather report may delay me one day. 16.72 Mile (s) Campground Reviews (0) Reviews. Mitchell, but fell to his death on the decent, at nearby Mitchell Falls. 80, and follow it about 9 miles to the Mount Mitchell Golf Course. Mount Mitchell State Park: Hike from Black Mountain Campground to Summit of Mount Mitchell - See 735 traveler reviews, 729 candid photos, and great deals for Burnsville, NC, at Tripadvisor. Or an underwhelming end to such a promising hike. Great hike! Rogers, but the forest is lovely and several of the streams charming. )Park Rangers waited over 24 hours to retrieve said packs--a 24 hours that saw myself and probably several other hikers walking right into a potentially dangerous situation where a bear may have been guarding its food-rich bonanza. This is a moderate one way trail to Black Mountain Campground in Pisgah National Forest. Campgrounds and adjacent restrooms (no showers or hot water) are open from May 1–October 31. AN EARLY START is also beneficial. I've read Randy Johnson's article in WNC Mag. Then it was three hours back to my car at the campground. Alexa said: Great hike! I am 69 and it took me four hours to summit. Although, this type of hike with everything put together was probably a bit of a crazy decision leading her on it. One of those places that stand apart from the ordinary, Mount Mitchell’s dramatic summit is the highest point east of the Mississippi at 6,684 feet and was the inspiration for one of the nation’s first state parks. Brian said: @Matt - Hi Matt, you can still park outside the gate in the parking lot and hike through the Black Mountain campground when it is closed. Then you enter Higgins Bald itself. Sunny, warm, easy to hike with trail shoes (no boots), shorts, and t-shirt. I'm happy to post a new "record" for the trail on this site - yesterday at 1pm, I left the car at the parking lot of the campground (beofre the bridge) after eating two bananas and hit start on my GPS, and was at the top 1h 55mins 38s later, with no breaks on the way and a finishing sprint on the last paved meters. The top is all asphalt and all folks that drove up will be at on the top of the mountain, noisy, in the way of hikers, making phone calls to friends telling them they are on the highest mountain East of Mississippi. Lots of bear activity in this area as weisguy said. Dan said: My wife and I did this hike the Monday after Easter. I started the trail up at 3:30 in the middle of September. Base layers may not be Fell on my behind twice on the slippery rocks as I was coming down lol. Can't compare to Mt Washington because I did it in winter. Hike on my friends! Fortunately all of the rain I had driven trough on … The last 2 miles downhill are when you can really feel the foot/leg fatigue. weissguy said: This hike is very strenuous without a lot of pay-off for the effort. The poster that said they drove from Raleigh, did the hike and drove back in one day is full of you-know-what. I've been doing some short mountain climbs near where I live for the past six months. Black Mountain Crest Trail - Pisgah National Forest & Mt. I'm 41 and in very good shape. Be prepared to move slowly across the icier sections (we use homemade steel "cleats" on our boots to be safe) and wait to take breaks somewhere out of the wind. I have read the rest of the comments...I'm embarrassed to say it took us 8 hours to do this! When the trail opened up & I saw the sign in the distance I just knew I was at the end- only to read there was 1.6 miles left was depressing! It only took a is 3 hours to get the the bottom. Holly said: A word to would-be backpackers on this trail - the best bet for breaking this hike up is to do what we did not do, and take the first fork you see for the Higgins Bald Trail. I would like to make it an overnight. Still bummed about the lack of cheeseburgers at the top.. Teresa said: I hiked Mount Mitchell on December 12, 2015. We started our hike shortly after 9:00 a.m. and were back down at the campground at about 5:45 p.m. Bob Marshall said: Marcy was a little more difficult than i expected. Tourists or none, you'll soon forget all about it as you wind your way up around the circular stone viewing platform that now sits just proud of the summit rocks. As the temps fall again there will definitely be ice all over the upper areas of this trail. The trail curves to a more northwesterly direction in general, just after crossing the 5000 ft. contour. Unfortunately the warmer temps had not found there way to the higher elevations and the shade prevented a lot of the ice from melting. Restrooms were very tidy and clean as well. It was snowy, cold and windy 3-29 and 3-30. It's very doable as a day hike, although some people choose to do the trail over 2 days, spending the night near the top. i was just up there guiding a trip. No hiking sticks on the way up but grabbed one for the way down. The Trailhead. Started at Black Mountain campground (where I set up my camp and left my car), so I was committed to hiking up and back down. I'm a pretty athletic 28 year old and my hiking buddy is 32.from the black mountain campground to the summit it took exactly 2 hours 25 min. Take your camera!!! - See 743 traveler reviews, 745 candid photos, and great deals for Burnsville, NC, at Tripadvisor. W.F. There were quite a few tourists at the top, but it wasn't super crowded. Great base for hiking & exploring Mt Mitchell area - lonewolf1977 Carolina Hemlocks Campground. Makes boiling water for oatmeal a real challenge. Lots of roots and rocks in the trail, even by WNC standards. Made it back to the bottom in under 6 hours total, including all rests and break at the top. I am a runner. there are a few streams so if you have a water filter you may beable to fill up. Couldn't hang around too long. The area offers the standard features of a state park (stores, restrooms, picnic tables, campsites, restaurant, etc). I admit we could have probably rested a little more as we ended up summiting in 3hour and 15 mins. While we don't offer reservations for BLACK MOUNTAIN CAMPGROUND, check out these great RV Parks and Campgrounds as close as 2.95 miles from BLACK MOUNTAIN CAMPGROUND. You'll pass by an enormous, free-standing boulder on your right and a neat cave on the left. The Mt Craig was a mile or so out, then back, and gives a good indication of how the trail conditions will be, the terrain you'll be on, etc., if you've got doubts. Patrick said: Planning on doing this trip in two weeks. The hike began at Bowlens Creek. WNCOutdoors data is made freely available under the If panoramic views are what you came for, hit the 6-mile Mount Mitchell Trail. Mitchell Trail route from the campsite on the 2nd day. Have fun and stay safe. This was a very challenging hike - it is very strenuous on legs muscles, especially knees, ankles, and feet. I am, well, out of shape, but still do a lot of hiking. (It is not allowed higher up, on NC State Park property, outside of the designated campground.). Mitchell yesterday with my dog. I have never seen so many on a trail before. I was definitely holding my husband back. Difficulty Rating: 19.9 Tread Condition: Moderately Rough Climb: Climbs Steeply Lowest Elevation: 2995 ft Highest Elevation: 6684 ft Climb Total: 3689 ft Configuration: Out-and-back Starting Point: Black Mountain Campground (or optionally Mount Mitchell State Park summit parking area), Trails Used: Mount Mitchell, Balsam Nature, Summit, Buncombe Horse Range, Briar Bottom, Mountains to Sea Section 3, Higgins Bald, From Asheville, take I-240 East to I-40 East toward Old Fort, N.C., about 19 miles. Mount Mitchell State Park is a large park in the Black Mountain range that offers outstanding year-round views of the area. All but one water fountain was out of order, and that one remaining had a very low flow. I was booking and trying to beat 2 hrs 30 min. Personally I like the immersion that a night in the woods can give-thusly I want to camp on the way up and it's always nice to camp near water. It took us about 100 minutes to get back to the parking lot from Commissary with big packs. I enjoy this kind of stuff though, and was in awe of the backwoods. By 1:30, I was ready to head back down and did so maybe quicker than I actually wanted to reaching base at 4:15. The rest of the way up has it's mix of nice level trails and extremely tough points when you feel like you might pop a lung. If you are hiking in the winter months, I would recommend to avoid the longer Higgins Bald detour, not very scenic in the winter. If you're not used to hiking or strenuous exercise, I'd use a hiking pole to help, especially on the way down! Then drove the 4 hours back to Fayetteville and slept really well! Mitchell trail on the way back as well. Malcolm said: I am a meteorologist & the best time to climb this in 2012 would be March due to the cooling trend in the Pacific bringing Warmer Temperatures to NC (Also called a La Nina). We were a bit late getting on the trail (10:30 AM) and by the time we finished (6:00 PM) it was getting pretty dark in some areas of the trail. Summitting at a parking lot, although expected, is still a drag. But in saying that, another thing that makes me fall in love with a hike, and a mountain, is the work you have to put in to accomplish your goal. It started pouring the rain 3/4 of the way to the top. We couldn't see any views at all. “ Ascend the tallest peak in The East from humble beginnings in Briar Bottom Group Campground. The staff was very friendly and nice.Mount Mitchell is no fee. Mount Mitchell : SummitPost.org : Climbing, hiking, mountaineering. Don't attempt a round trip hike after lunch. Enter Date. Forest Service Campgrounds. We did not explore other parts of the park because (1) it was physically impossible to see anything more that 40 feet away when I was up there and (2) the ice and wind chill made me want to make a quick exit I guess it's possible if you explored the park further you might find a locked gate somehwere with no way around, but I think this is of very minimal concern. Took me a little over 6 hours round trip. I didn't stop much but wasn't rushing either. Matt said: Really glad I just found this site. The trail begins at the Black Mountain Campground (operated by the U.S. Forest Service) and ends at the summit. Greg said: Can you hike it from the Black Mountain Campground to the summit and back in the same day (daylight hours)? 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