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Backpack to Overmountain Shelter in the Roan Highlands

Bakersville, North Carolina

based on 1 reviews



5.5 miles

Elevation Gain

900 ft

Route Type



Added by Jess Fischer

Normally a popular shelter for through-hikers on the AT, this shelter is also a great location for a quick overnight backpacking trip in the Roan Highlands. 

Starting from the Carver Gap Parking area (do not leave belongings visible in your vehicle) head North on the Appalachian Trail (cross the road and head up the hill past the kiosk). Stay on the Appalachian Trail for 5.5 miles climbing across open balds and treking through forests and wildflower patches. You will come to an intersection where you'll notice a lot of little signs; this is Yellow Mountain Gap and where the Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail intersects with the AT. At this point take a RIGHT and follow the very well beaten trail down to the Overmountain Shelter. You will come to a clearing before reaching the barn- there are fire pits and room for a lot of tents. There is also a natural spring right before reaching the clearing- marked by a blue blazed trail. 

The barn located on the far end of the clearing is a two story building that was built in the 1970s for farming but was eventually converted into an AT shelter a decade or so later. It has a loft for sleeping, outdoor areas where you can throw up hammocks, picnic tables, a fire ring and a privy. We opted to camp in the field but we did walk over and walk around in the barn to check it out. 

To return to Carvers Gap, leave the campsite the same way you came in; follow the side trail up to the Appalachian Trail and take a LEFT. Hike the 5.5 miles back to your car.

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Dog Friendly

Backpack to Overmountain Shelter in the Roan Highlands Reviews

Just did this trip in early November and we had snow. I was worried at first but the snow made everything look incredible. One piece of advice- don’t use apple maps. It took me through this neighborhood and up onto a muddy road that is impassable. The road up to Carvers Gap (Hwy 143) is in fact a normal paved road. All in all, one of the coolest places I’ve been to especially when it was snow covered.

Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!


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