Backpack the Roan Highlands (A.T.)

14 Miles Round Trip - Point-to-Point Trail

Carvers Gap - Search Nearby - Added by Steve Yocom

Traverse six grassy balds along the Appalachian Trail, all above five thousand feet. On the way you will meet thru-hikers, all the while enjoying 360-degree views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Camp on a mountain overlooking North Carolina and Tennessee, and enjoy breathtaking views of the night sky.

The Roan highlands, possibly one of the best sections of the Appalachian Trail, is a section of grassy balds that range from 5000-6000 feet following the A.T.

Start at Carvers Gap ( Highway 261 NC / Highway 143 TN) on the TN/NC border. You can either leave a car at Highway 19E or arrange for a shuttle with Mountain Harbour Hostel.

Head North on the A.T. Climbing Round Bald, Jane Bald, and Grassy Ridge Bald. Be sure to do some exploring or the extra 1 mile out and back on Grassy Ridge Bald. It makes for a great spot to have lunch too!

Descending your way into Yellow Mountain gap, there is a side trail to the overmountain shelter and a great spot to refill your water. If the weather is bad take shelter in the barn for the night or push on to big yellow mountain, and camp in the grassy fields for some great sunset and sunrise views. In the morning ascend little hump and big hump mountain before doing the long descent down to 19E.

Tags

Camping
Photography
Backpacking
Hiking
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Forest
Romantic
Scenic
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Details

14 Miles
Point-to-Point Trail

Stay Nearby

Boone, North Carolina

Boone KOA

Blountville, Tennessee

Bristol / Kingsport KOA

Swannanoa, North Carolina

Asheville East KOA

Greeneville, Tennessee

Baileyton KOA

Nearby Adventures

Backpack to Overmountain Shelter in the Roan Highlands

5.5 Miles Round Trip - 900 ft gain

Hike to Grassy Ridge Bald in the Roan Highlands

5.3 Miles Round Trip - 700 ft gain

Hike to Janes Bald

3 Miles Round Trip - 308 ft gain

More Nearby Adventures

Reviews

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#1 Hike on the Entire AT

Come enjoy the #1 section on the entire AT. Park at The Station at 19e, book your shuttle with http://www.roanmountainshuttle.com free parking, free pick up at the end of your hike at 19e trailhead just 1/2 mile away, no road walking. Best of all have a beer and some food.

Best Hike On The AT, Hands-Down

The views from the mountain balds will take your breath away if the 15-mile hike doesn't first. I've lived in Tennessee practically my entire life and have thoroughly explored the surrounding area and have yet to find a better day-hike. I would highly advise calling the shuttle service ahead of time to give them advanced notice. Leave at 7 am or earlier to give you enough time to reach the shuttle service before it stops at 4.

Best Backpacking Experience Yet

I took Labor Day Weekend 2016 and spent 3 days hiking 38 miles, going out and back from Carvers Gap. I can't say enough about this destination and the experience. I've heard abut the Roan Highlands for years, but now I truly understand why its one of the most popular backpacking destinations not only on the Appalachian Trail, but in the Eastern United State overall. If you haven't hiked it yet, find the time to do it; it's worth it.