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Hiking and Backpacking North Carolina’s Appalachian Mountains

Hiking and Backpacking North Carolina’s Appalachian Mountains

From $ 1,645 AUD

Description

When it comes to trails, views, summits, and abundant flora and fauna, North Carolina’s Appalachian Mountains and Shining Rock Wilderness in particular, is the place to be. Discover the Cradle of Forestry area where American forest conservation began and stop at Looking Glass Falls, a stunning roadside waterfall, which features incredible 360 degree views. Spend two nights camping in the heart of the action near the famous and unique rock feature known as Shining Rock. Hike to the summit, eat lunch on a massive ledge with views of the entire area, and enjoy spectacular views on this small group backpacking adventure.

Trip Name
Hiking and Backpacking North Carolina's Appalachian Mountains
Last Updated
2024-05-25
Days
3
Capacity
8
Highlights
  • Enjoy a delicious dinner prepared by your leader as you watch the sunset from the comfort of your camp on the summit of Shining Rock.
  • Take in spectacular views on the hike to the summit of Cold Mountain which features in Charles Frazier’s historic fiction novel of the same name.
  • Take in sweeping views of the Appalachian Mountain Range as you enjoy lunch on the summit of one of the peaks or in the grassy meadows of Ivestor Gap.
  • Stop at Looking Glass Falls, a stunning roadside waterfall, and watch the water tumbling over the top of a high cliff to create an impressively wide cascade.
  • Enjoy scenic vistas galore as you make your way along a trail that showcases views of the entire Pisgah National Forest.

Itinerary

ITINERARY CHANGES Our itineraries are updated regularly throughout the year based on customer feedback and to reflect the current situation in each destination. The information included in this Essential Trip Information may therefore differ from when you first booked your trip. It's important that you review this information prior to travel so that you have the latest updates. Due to weather, local conditions, transport schedules, public holidays, political unrest or other factors, further changes may be necessary to your itinerary once in-country. Your group leader or local representative will keep you up to date with any such changes once your trip is underway. OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES A selection of optional activities that have been popular with past travellers are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only for some of what might be available. Prices are approximate, are for entrance fees only, and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability, and maybe on a join-in basis. It may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination, so some pre-planning for what you are most interested in is advised. When it's recommended that travellers pre-book these activities, look for a note in the Special Information section of the day-to-day itinerary. For most, they can either be organised independently on the day, or let your group leader or local representative know you are interested at the Welcome Meeting and they can assist. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. Although it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Medium and high-risk activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and group leader or local representative are unable to assist you with organising these activities. Activities that contravene our Responsible Travel policies are also not listed. Please remember that the decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk. In order to travel on this trip, you: 1. Must be able to understand and recognize the risks and hazards inherent in the activities of the trip, must be able to decide to assume those risks and hazards and must actually and voluntarily assume those risks and hazards. 2. Must be able to withstand exposure to the outdoors including exposure to diverse climactic conditions during the trip, including temperatures ranging from below freezing to +100 degrees F, potentially rapidly changing precipitative conditions from dry conditions to precipitation including monsoons and flash floods, for the duration of the Program. 3. Must be able to monitor and evaluate changes in personal health condition including the onset of dehydration, hyponatremia, heat illness or stroke or hypothermia and must be able to communicate any changes in personal health condition or safety concerns to the guide(s). 4. Must be able to participate in all activities at the time scheduled for each activity; e.g. to beat the heat, guest pick-up and hike start times during summer months may range between 3-6 a.m. 5. Must be able to manage all personal care and mobility during extended periods of exertion of 10-plus hours per day, either independently or with the assistance of a companion or an approved assistive device. 6. Must be able to enter and exit a multi-passenger vehicle either independently or with the assistance of a companion or approved assistive device. 7. Must be able to withstand up to eight hours as a passenger in a multi-passenger vehicle, transporting up to 14 passengers at a time, either independently or with the assistance of a companion or an approved assistive device. 8. Must be able to immediately comprehend and follow verbal instructions either independently or with the assistance of a companion or approved assistive device. 9. Must be able to traverse wet and dry, sandy, rocky, uneven and/or unstable ground over a distance of 10-plus miles per day including elevation differential (gain and/or loss) of +3,000 feet per day, for a period of up to 10 hours per day, while carrying: a) BACKPACKING/BACKCOUNTRY TRIPS- a backpack weighing 25-50 pounds, b) FRONTCOUNTRY/LODGE, BASECAMP AND INN-BASED TRIPS - a fully loaded backpack weighing 10-15 pounds, either independently or with an assistance companion or an approved assistive device. 10. Must be able to self-manage and self-navigate unsupervised while in the designated camp area either independently or with the assistance of a companion or approved assistive device. 11. Must be able to perform basic camping activities including sleeping on the ground, consuming water from back country sources, consuming food prepared in a backcountry setting and maintaining personal health and hygiene in accordance with guide directives either independently or with the assistance of a companion or approved assistive device. The use of an assistive device to meet any element of the essential eligibility criteria must be approved in advance by Intrepid Travel.

Day 1 - Blue Ridge Mountains
After a pick up from downtown Asheville, your trip begins with a drive through the city of Brevard and a stop at an amazing roadside attraction, Looking Glass Falls. From here it is a short drive along the Blue Ridge Parkway to the start of the Art Loeb Trail and its mighty mountain peaks. Cross over Black Balsam Knob and Tennent Mountain and take in the sweeping views of the surrounding Appalachian Mountain Range as you enjoy lunch on the summit of one of these peaks or in the grassy meadows of Ivestor Gap. After hiking onwards to our two night basecamp near Shining Rock Gap, you will enjoy a memorable sunset dinner on the summit of Shining Rock.
Day 2 - Blue Ridge Mountains
Today there are two different ways to enjoy the Appalachian High country. The first option is a hike to an amazing summit view from atop Cold Mountain which features in Charles Frazier’s historic fiction novel of the same name. After lunch at the summit, hike back toward Shining Rock Gap and your scenic camp. Your second (easier) option is to simply shorten this hike to turn around and have lunch along a scenic ridgeline called “the Narrows”. This shorter hike allows extra time to relax and explore the quartzite rock outcroppings of Shining Rock before the return to camp. Please note, your tour leader will decided, together with the group, which option is best for everyone.
Day 3 - Blue Ridge Mountains
Today you will break down camp and work our way back to where you began our trek. On the way, stop and enjoy multiple views along the trail which allow us to take in all of Pisgah National Forest. Today’s lunch is at one of the many amazing viewpoints of the famous Blue Ridge Parkway, before the short drive back to Asheville where your trip will come to an end.

Trip Dates

StartEndPrice FromRoom Type
03-06-202405-06-2024AUD $ 1,645-
04-07-202406-07-2024AUD $ 1,645-
31-07-202402-08-2024AUD $ 1,645-
23-08-202425-08-2024AUD $ 1,645-
02-09-202404-09-2024AUD $ 1,645-
20-09-202422-09-2024AUD $ 1,645-
04-10-202406-10-2024AUD $ 1,645-
13-10-202415-10-2024AUD $ 1,645-

Accommodation

Backcountry camping (2 nights)

Transport

Private vehicle

Map