Hiking

waterrock knob

Hiking the mountains of Western North Carolina

Waterrock Knob gets its name from a cool stream where hunters and farmers came to quench their thirst. While the views from the Blue Ridge Parkway are quite spectacular, they are even better at the summit. At 6,292 feet, visibility can be up to 50 miles on a clear day. The trail to the summit is the highest trail on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Length: 1.2 miles
Elevation Gain: 472 feet
Trail Type: Out-and-back
Skill Level: Moderate to strenuous
Trailhead Elevation: 5,820 feet
Top Elevation: 6,292 feet

Directions from Asheville

  1. Take I-40 W to exit 27 for the Great Smoky Mountains Expy., which is also 19 S.
  2. Take exit 103 to stay on 19 S.
  3. After 12.1 miles, take the exit for the Blue Ridge Parkway.
  4. Turn right at the Blue Ridge Parkway.
  5. At milepost 451.2, turn left on Road to Waterrock Knob.

A small section of the Blue Ridge Parkway between the gates at milepost 420.3 (near Black Balsam Road) and milepost 423.3 (at NC Hwy 215) will be closed to all visitors beginning November 3, 2014 through May 2015.

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