Craggy Pinnacle Pisgah National Forest, NC
miles
LENGTH 0.9 MILES
DIFFICULTY 2.2 Easy
DURATION 30 minutes
ELEVATION GAIN
270
feet
TRAIL TYPE
There And
Back Again
Craggy Pinnacle

A short scenic drive north of Asheville is all it takes for some of the best views along the Blue Ridge Parkway. Hike the Craggy Pinnacle Trail just north of the Craggy Gardens Visitor Center for multiple expansive views from the summit of Craggy Pinnacle. the third highest mountain in the Great Craggy Mountain sub-range of Blue Ridge Mountains in North Carolina.

From the upper parking area, look for the trail sign and steps heading up the hill. Immediately you'll dive into dense Catawba rhododendron tunnels as you make your way up to the summit. On the way, the trail curves around a large boulder. A small side trail walks you on top of the rock for a view.

After a third of a mile the trail splits then immediately rejoins. On the other side of this small loop, the trails splits again to the two overlooks. The trail to the right drops down sharply to an overlook facing the Craggy Gardens Visitor Center on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Here you'll get a 180-degree view to the south. But it gets better.

Back at the intersection, hike the left trail to the summit overlook. Here a four-leaf clover shaped observation area provides 360-degree views of the stunning surrounding landscape. Look to the northwest for Craggy Dome, the highest peak in the range. For such an easy trail, the views can't be beat.

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Elevation Map Length (miles) by Elevation (feet)
Slope Breakdown
Elevation Gain
Elevation Range
Grade Range
Length
Elevation Gain
0 - 250 ft/mi
~ 0 - 5 %
0.1 mi
16 ft
250 - 500 ft/mi
~ 5 - 10 %
448 ft
33 ft
500 - 750 ft/mi
~ 10 - 15 %
472 ft
57 ft
750 - 1000 ft/mi
~ 15 - 20 %
212 ft
37 ft
1000+ ft/mi
~ 20+ %
0.1 mi
129 ft
For out-and-back hikes, elevation loss is the same as the gain.
Terrain Map Click to control map
Navigation
0.0 mi
0.0 mi - Trailhead
0.3 mi
0.3 mi - Trail Split The trail splits and rejoins to form a short loop. At the other side of this loop, the trail splits again, each direction to an overlook so take both.
0.4 - 0.5 mi
0.4 - 0.5 mi - Summit and Overlooks
Details
length0.9 miles
difficulty2.2 Easy
duration30 minutes
features Dog Friendly  Summit  Views 
trail typeThere And Back Again
blazeNone
elevation gain270 ft.
park/forestPisgah National Forest
ranger districtAppalachian Ranger District
632 Manor Road
Mars Hill, NC 28754
828-689-9694
parking feeNone
trailhead coordinates 35.704178, -82.373718 (Degree Decimal, DegDec)
N 35°42.25, W 82°22.42 (Degree Minutes, MinDec)
N 35°42'15'', N 35°42'15'' (Degree Minutes Seconds, DMS)
Trailhead Directions
35.704178, -82.373718 (Degree Decimal, DegDec)
N 35°42.25, W 82°22.42 most GPS units use this one
N 35°42'15'', N 35°42'15'' (Degree Minutes Seconds, DMS)
Google Map It
Google Maps kept trying to route me heading south on the Blue Ridge Parkway as if it though you couldn't access it travelling north. If you're coming from Asheville, it should only be 30 on the BRP. Search for "Craggy Gardens Visitor Center" (35.700234, -82.379508) and get directions based on that. Then drive another half mile north on the BRP and the parking lot is on the left.
Parking Capacity
47 parking spaces plus two handicap.
Notes
The trail is quite rocky on the way up.
A low rock wall surrounds both overlooks. As the signs warn, do not go over the rock walls. In many places, falling would not be fun.
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Reviews / Comments
Average Review Rating
5 (1)
hikethesouth-1 month ago
BRP Required Hike
If you're travelling along the Blue Ridge Parkway north of Asheville, this is a must stop. You'll barely break a sweat to enjoy some of the best views along the parkway on this short hike. As further proof, several people were shooting engagement photos at the overlooks.
Easy | Hiked Spring 2019
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