Mt. Mitchell (6,683') via Old Mitchell Campground Spur and Mt. Mitchell trails, July 2009
Mileage: 3ish miles RT
Elevation gain: unknown (probably 1,000')
Trailhead: From Asheville, take the Blue Ridge Parkway north for 27 miles to the entrance for Mount Mitchell State Park. (Double check these directions before you head out. A landslide closed a portion of the highway when we were there.) Turn left, on NC 128. Park just past the gated entrance, at the Park Office.
Hiked this state highpoint with Rich. Our original plan was to hike the Mt. Mitchell trail from the Black Mountain campground but we were having a leisurely vacation and balked at the idea of a 5.5 mile (one way) jaunt. So instead we parked on the road to the summit (you can drive to the summit) and headed up the Old Mitchell Campground trail.
Footing was good as we passed through clear and then wooded areas. It was cool and foggy, not at all the hot July weather we were expecting. But the conditions made for a comfortable walk up through the woods (there was nothing tricky about this trail).
|The trail spit us out onto a paved walkway to the overlook.|
Conditions were no less foggy when we got to the walkway near the summit platform. There would be no view today. A few hearty souls were milling around in sweatshirts.
|A very nice state high point, well maintained.|
Retracing our steps we got back to the car in no time. On to the next highpoint on our four-state-highpointing vacay.