Mount Pisgah Trail

Mount Pisgah Hike: Story Only

Hike to the top of Asheville's most recognizable peak

What to Expect

Mt. Pisgah HikeOn a clear day, Mount Pisgah's 5,721-foot summit can easily be seen from downtown Asheville. Likewise, after a steep climb through hardwood forest, Asheville is clearly visible 16 miles away.  

Mt. Pisgah is like the Eiffel tower, probably the most recognized high point of Western North Carolina. After you see the iconic transmission tower up close and personal, you'll recognize it from other points. Just like the Eiffel Tower, it's popular and crowded, especially in sunny afternoons. However, unlike the Eiffel Tower, you can't buy a drink on top of Mt. Pisgah and you can't take an elevator.

The trail starts flat behind the large Mt. Pisgah information board. First, you're walking through rosebay and Catawba rhododendron and mountain laurel. Then the trail veers left, narrows, and goes up on log steps. At 0.8 mile, a short side trail on the right allows for your first good views to the north - layers upon layers of ridges.

The trail climbs on good rock steps through countless varieties of spring and summer flowers. Before the trail turns right at 1.1 miles, you have a good southwestern view of the prominent tower on Frying Pan Mountain.

The trail turns right to continue more steeply. Closer to the top, the trail switchbacks on log steps and you can see the tower in front of you.

Reach the observation platform. On a clear day, you can see Cold Mountain to the west, and Pisgah Inn, Looking Glass Rock and Frying Pan Mountain and Tower to the southwest. Behind you,to the north, the most prominent thing is the TV transmission tower for the local ABC affiliate.  Return the same way.

Hike Details

Difficulty: Moderate

Distance from Asheville: About 35 minutes 

Length: 2.6 miles round-trip 

Region: Pisgah National Forest/Blue Ridge Parkway 

Duration of Hike: 1-2 hours

Elevation Gain: 750 feet

Pet-Friendly? Leashed dogs welcome

Multiple Use? No

Blazes? No

Facilities & Parking: Parking area

Natural Features: Stunning views at the peak, spring and summer flowers (like Catawba rhododendron and mountain laurel)

Directions

From downtown Asheville, take the Blue Ridge Parkway south to MP 407.6.  Turn into the Mount Pisgah parking area.

GPS Coordinates

N35.41563, W82.74869

Photos by Danny Bernstein.