Hike to Pinnacle Mountain Fire Tower

Details

Distance

3 miles

Elevation Gain

536 ft

Route Type

Out-and-Back

Added by Merritt McKinney

Pinnacle Mountain Fire Tower is the premiere hiking spot in Johnson City, Tennessee. Easily accessible from the interstate and near the good-eats of downtown, this hike is truly a can't-miss!

Pinnacle Mountain hosts one of the nicest fire towers on the East Coast of the United States. The fire tower is relatively new, sturdy, and has a large 360 degree viewing area at the top. The tower overlooks the Downtown Johnson City area, Elizabethton, Erwin, and the rest of the Buffalo Mountain Range.

Four-wheel drive is required in order to access the tower from this direction, although it is possible to hike or mountain bike there from a second entrance off Interstate 26 exit 32. When accessing the tower from Dry Creek Road, turn onto a dirt road called Fire Tower Road and continue for 5.5 miles until you reach a parking area surrounded by a wooden fence. There is a steep, half-mile service road to the left that leads to the fire tower. The main hiking trail winds 1.5 miles around the mountain and is located on the other side of the wooden fence designated by a trail marker.

I would recommend taking the main hiking trail on the way up to the fire tower and taking the service road down. Bring a hammock if possible as the viewing platform of the fire tower has multiple anchor points. The gate at the bottom of Dry Creek Road is sometimes closed during the winter due to inclement weather.   

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Chillin
Photography
Hiking
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Food Nearby
Forest
Romantic
Scenic
Wildflowers

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Leave No Trace

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

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on.

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