Hiking and Fishing the Big East Fork Trail

Rate this Adventure North Carolina Big East Fork Trail

Added by Steve Yocom

  • Distance: 6.1 miles
  • Duration: all day
  • Elevation gain: 1042 ft.
  • Relatively easy hike while fishing your way up and down the river
  • East Fork of the Pigeon River

Park at the big east fork and fish your way up through wild fish country and scenic waterfalls. The Shining Rock Wilderness has a plethora of places to fish and hike for the day, with amazing views all around. The East Fork of the Pigeon River is also known as the Big East Fork and a trail follows the river from Hwy. 276 to Greasy Cove Prong. The trail will wind it's way up (and down) over 1000 ft. of elevation gain through a dense forest and waterfalls, which all provide great areas to cast a line.

The end of the hike gets you to the Bridges Camp Gap up to the Blue Ridge Parkway.


This trail is in the Shining Rock Wilderness Area: From the Pisgah District Ranger Station/Visitor Center parking lot, turn right (north) on US 276. Proceed 14 miles north to, and under, the Blue Ridge Parkway. Then approximately 2¾ miles further to the auxiliary Big East Fork parking area, which is unsigned, and on the left before the highway bridge. (The primary parking lot is signed, and after the bridge.) The trail is on the south end of the parking area.

Pack List

  • Fishing gear (tackle, bait, etc.)
  • Hiking shoes (if not wading)
  • Hiking clothes (weather appropriate)
  • Water
  • Snacks/ lunch
  • Camera
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Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More



Fishing, Hiking, Photography

Skill Level:



Spring, Summer, Autumn


Easy Parking
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Added by Steve Yocom

25 years young. Burst at the seems, be what you dream. Living in the Blue Ridge Mountains! Adventuring whenever I can!

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