Catch a Sunset On Green Knob

Added by Steve Yocom

Distance: 7 miles round trip. Elevation gain: 1,000 ft. Views of Mt. Hardy and surrounding Middle Prong Wilderness. Complete a section of the famed Mountain to Sea Trail. Incredible scenery for photography.

Although not as popular as neighboring Shining Rock Wilderness, the Middle Prong Wilderness is equally as beautiful and typically half as crowded. This hike, mostly along the Mountain to Sea trail, leads through forests of oak, birch, spruce and fir trees, along a babbling brook, past waterfalls, and onto an expansive summit meadow. For those in Asheville looking to escape to some solitude, the hike to Green Knob may be just what you need.

Begin your hike at the Mountain to Sea Trailhead near the intersection of Hwy 215 (AKA Lake Logan Rd.) and the Blue Ridge Parkway. You'll follow this trail almost all the way to Green Knob. It will take you on a gradual but consistent climb, winding through the forest with occasional vistas of the surrounding mountains. As you near the summit (about 3 miles into the hike), pay close attention to find the Green Knob Trail on the right hand side. If you start to notice the trail heading back down, you've gone to far. Follow the Green Knob Trail a short distance and the forest will open up into a beautiful meadow where you can rest before the return trip or set up camp for the night.

To get to the trailhead from Asheville, head out of town on I-40 West until you reach NC-110 South. Follow the 110 about 5 miles and it turns into NC 215 S, which you'll take another 17 miles to the parking lot on the right hand side of the road where you'll find the trailhead. There is a trailhead leading into the woods right in the parking lot but this leads only to some campsites nearby. To find the right trailhead, walk north along the road for a short distance past the end of the parking lot and look for a trailhead.

Read More

Tags

Chillin
Camping
Photography
Backpacking
Hiking
Easy Parking
Scenic

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating: 

Clarification

These pictures are taken from the end of the ridge that juts out between Green Mountain Trail and Buckeye Gap Trail and above the MST. On the map you can see it in the topography. The Green Mountain Trail can be hard to find and is not marked well, but as you're coming up to the "picture" spot look for a little trail that cuts up into the trees and that's Green Mountain Trail. I ended up hiking the rest of the way to Green Knob summit which is an extra mile or so. You'll see a little fire ring to your right almost directly on the trail near the summit. There's also some small little trails that split off at the summit about 20 yards up and have open views of the east. About 10 yards down from the fire ring on the trail there's a trail that opens up to some rock with views of the east. Honestly for sunset the views from the "picture" spot are probably better but it is more crowded. For sunrise I think Green Knob summit would be better given it's direct view of the east.

Wrong Address?

We went to to the address and ended up just hiking Sea Trail the whole way and didn't get to any meadow. Are you supposed to just follow the white circles the whole way? We didn't know when to turn right because the trail split off so many times.

šŸ„‰Contributor

almost 4 years ago

close trails

A great spot for a good view and close trails

Not Green Knob peak, but Green Knob trail near MTS intersection.

You might want to clarify that while the pictures are close to the beginning of Green Knob trail, the actual Green Knob peak is about 2 miles further down the Green Knob trail. The top of Green Knob peak is nice, but not as open as this area at the beginning of the trail, close to the MTS intersection. Fantastic destination either way!

Amazing

Absolutely amazing hike. Very remote feel as you make your way up to Green Knob. The sunset and backdrop are amazing, well worth the hike.

Stay Nearby

Canton, North Carolina

Cove Creek Lower Group Camp

Overview Cove Creek Lower Group Camp is one of two group campsites nestled along Cove Creek in the lush forests of the Appalachian Mountains in western North Carolina. The facility can accommodate ...

Canton, North Carolina

Cove Creek Upper Group Camp

Overview Cove Creek Upper Group Camp is one of two group campsites nestled along Cove Creek in the lush forests of the Appalachian Mountains. The facility can accommodate large groups of up to 60 p...

Tuckasegee, North Carolina

Balsam Lake Lodge

Overview Balsam Lake Lodge is nestled in the center of the 39,000-acre Roy Taylor Forest within the Nantahala National Forest. The lodge overlooks Balsam Lake and offers spectacular mountain views...

Pisgah Forest, North Carolina

Pink Beds Picnic Shelter

Overview The Pink Beds Picnic Shelter is the larger of two available shelters. It is adjacent to the Cradle of Forestry in America, a 6,500 acre historic site commemorating the beginning of forest...

Nearby Adventures

  • Explore the Devil's Courthouse

    The Devil's Courthouse Overlook and Trail can be one of the best places to see the entire Blue Ridge countryside. Even though it is a short hike, there is a fairly steep incline halfway through, so be prepared to huff and puff a little. It takes a...

    1 miles 258 ft gain

  • Hike to Bubling Spring Falls

    The road to get to this waterfall is right off of NCĀ 215 which comes right off of the Blue Ridge Parkway and is only about 3 miles away from parkway. The parking area is very small and does not offer many parking spots but since it is not that pop...

    0.1 miles 50 ft gain

  • Hike Tennent Mountain

    Park at the Lot at the end of Black Balsam road, and start your morning in the dark, down the old dirt road at the end of the lot. Take this road until you get to Ivestor Gap and make a right onto the Art Loeb, try and time it so the sun is just a...

    4 miles 900 ft gain

  • Hike to Black Balsam Knob via Art Loeb Trail

    The parking area for Black Balsam Knob is at mile marker 420.2 on the Blue Ridge Parkway. It's free to hike here.Take the Art Loeb Trail a half mile until you reach the knob. Along the way you will be walking almost entirely on the bald which is a...

    1 miles 400 ft gain