If you need assistance, please call 828-279-0998

  • Hiking across the Blue Ridge

    Tuesday, March 28, 2023   /   by Amy Brown

    Hiking across the Blue Ridge

    Asheville is known for its food, art, and culture, but you would miss a huge part of what makes this area special if you didn't explore the outdoors. Spring is a beautiful time in the mountains and what better way to see what all the buzz is about than to take a hike through the forest. 

    Here are some of my favorite hikes in a range of difficulty levels that are a short drive from downtown.

    Key: Easy = ??| Moderate = ???? | Hard = ??????

    Close to town

    Bearwallow Mountain, N35.4607, W-82.3681
    • Difficulty: ????
    • Length: 2.1 mile loop
    • Pet-friendly: Yes, on leash 
    This trail slopes gently uphill, eventually leading you to a gorgeous, pastoral bald with plenty of space to roam and picnic. Very often, you’ll see cows roaming the bald.

    Rattlesnake Lodge, 667 State Rd. 2109, Weaverville
    • Difficulty: ????
    • Length: 3.7 mile loop
    • Pet-friendly: Yes, on leash
    What this hike lacks in sweeping summit views, it makes up for with historic artifacts. After a good number of switchbacks and a few rocky outcrops, you’ll encounter the former site of the Rattlesnake Lodge, which was built in 1904 and gets its name from the now-defunct living room that was covered in rattlesnake skins.

    Craggy Gardens

    Craggy Gardens is known for its twisty rhododenrons.


    Photo by @jared_kay

    Blue Ridge Parkway and Pisgah National Forest

    Craggy Gardens, Blue Ridge Parkway Milepost 364
    • Difficulty: ??
    • Length: 1.9 mile out-and-back
    • Pet-friendly: Yes, on leash
    In the summer, blueberries are ripe for the picking and rhododendrons famously decorate the landscape of this iconic Asheville trail — but the panoramic views of Pisgah are sublime all year-long.

    Max Patch

    Snowy sunrise over Max Patch.


    Photo by @jared_kay

    Appalachian Trail 

    Max Patch Loop, Max Patch Rd.
    • Difficulty: ??
    • Length: 1.5 mile loop
    • Pet-friendly: Yes, on leash
    The drive up to the Max Patch parking lot is bumpy and twisty, but if you can manage that, you’ll be rewarded with a short hike and deeply memorable views of the mountains.

    Here are a few more a little ways outside of town:


    Also a great app to use is All Trails.

    Have a wonderful day and get outside!