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Waterrock Knob Blue Ridge Parkway, NC
miles
LENGTH 1 MILE
DIFFICULTY 3.7 Easy
DURATION 1 hour
ELEVATION GAIN
450
feet
TRAIL TYPE
There And
Back Again
Waterrock Knob

Massive views abound throughout this short hike to the top of Waterrock Knob, one of the easiest of the Southern Sixers to climb. A paved path leading to an overlook half way up make this trail more accessible than others. If planning a trip along the southern section of the Blue Ridge Parkway, make this a must to stop at.

The large parking lot itself is impressive, with extensive views from both sides. To the southeast you can see Mount Pisgah, Shining Rock, and other notable mountain tops. To the northwest you can see prominent mountains of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, including Clingman’s Dome and Mt. LeConte.

The trailhead starts at the end of the larger second parking lot near the restrooms. Don’t let the short distance fool you; this hike climbs 450 feet in just a half mile making it quite a challenge. Right from the start this elevation change will make itself know to you, steadily climbing above the parking lot. A couple side trails exist along this stretch, but navigating the main trail is easy. At .2 miles up, the paved trail ends at a short flight of stairs to a moderate sized stone overlook.

From here, the pavement ends, giving way to dirt and rock. Heavy erosion control has been placed along this section and thus is very rocky. The left side of the trail drops off steeply is some places. Several stone and wooden steps take you quickly up the mountain to the summit. Explore around, there are several good views. In the winter, the peak is often fog covered.

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Elevation Map Length (miles) by Elevation (feet)
Terrain Map Click to control map
Details
length1 mile
difficulty3.7 Easy
duration1 hour
trail typeThere And Back Again
blazeNone
elevation gain450 ft.
park/forestBlue Ridge Parkway
ranger districtBlue Ridge Parkway
199 Hemphill Knob Road
Asheville, NC 28803
828-348-3400
parking feeNone
trailhead coordinates 35.460063, -83.140482 (Degree Decimal, DegDec)
N 35°27.6, W 83°8.43 (Degree Minutes, MinDec)
N 35°27'36'', N 35°27'36'' (Degree Minutes Seconds, DMS)
Directions Trailhead Coordinates
35.460063, -83.140482 (Degree Decimal, DegDec)
N 35°27.6, W 83°8.43 most GPS units use this one
N 35°27'36'', N 35°27'36'' (Degree Minutes Seconds, DMS)
Google Map It
The trailhead is on the right hand side at the end of the second parking lot once you turn off the parkway.
Notes
The trail is rocky and has some steep drop offs. Pay attention to children and pets.
Reviews / Comments
Average Review Rating
4 (1)
hikethesouth-3 weeks ago
Great Short Hike Right Off the BRP
Don't miss this short but steep hike directly off the Blue Ridge Parkway. Excellent views from the parking lot, half way up, and at the summit if not covered in fog.
Easy | Hiked Winter 2012
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