Hays, North Carolina

Looking for the best hiking in Hays? We've got you covered with the top trails, trips, hiking, backpacking, camping and more around Hays. The detailed guides, photos, and reviews are all submitted by the Outbound community.

Top Hiking Spots in and near Hays

  • Hays, North Carolina

    Hike along Basin Creek in Doughton Park

    5.0
    11 mi / 1800 ft gain
    A treasure in North Carolina that doesn't get as much attention as it should, Doughton Park has some of the best trails around. It is the largest park operated by the Blue Ridge Parkway and has over 30 miles of trails available.  The parking area for the Basin Creek Trail is small, but rarely cro...
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  • Traphill, North Carolina

    Hike the Stone Mountain Loop

    4.5
    This is a strenuous 4.5 mile hike beginning from the Lower Parking Lot in Stone Mountain State Park (for a 5.2 mile hike, begin at the Upper Parking Lot). From the lot, take the trail by the bathroom. Keep right at the first trail intersection, then left at the second trail intersection to stay ...
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  • Traphill, North Carolina

    Hike to Wolf Rock and Cedar Rock

    5.0
    This easy 3.0 mile hike begins at the Lower Trailhead Parking Lot at Stone Mountain State Park and includes a 400' ascent to two granite outcrops with nice views. This hike can be combined with the Stone Mountain Loop hike for a 6.5 mile strenuous hike.From the parking lot, walk towards the strea...
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  • Sparta, North Carolina

    Hike the Bluff Mountain Trail

    1.8 mi / 270 ft gain
    Before you head out, check the status of the Blue Ridge Parkway (it periodically closes during the winter).  The entire Bluff Mountain Trail is a 7.1 mile trail that traverses the Doughton Park Area along the Blue Ridge Parkway.  To do this particular hike, park at the bathrooms in the Doughton P...
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  • Purlear, North Carolina

    The Lump Trail

    4.0
    0.27 mi / 82 ft gain
    The Lump Trail is an out-and-back trail where you may see beautiful wildflowers located near Purlear, North Carolina.
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  • Purlear, North Carolina

    Cascades Trail

    5.0
    0.86 mi / 220 ft gain
    Cascades Trail is an out-and-back trail that takes you by a waterfall located near Deep Gap, North Carolina.
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  • Hiddenite, United States

    Hike The Hollow Rock Trail at Rocky Face Mountain

    4.0
    2.4 mi / 514 ft gain
    From the parking lot, head northwest to find the trailhead for Buzzard Roost Loop. Follow that and stay left to meet up with the Hollow Rock Trail. This is a moderate hike with great views of the park. Perfect for a quick escape with the family. For a quick and tasty bite after your hike, hit up ...
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  • Creston, North Carolina

    Three Top Mountain

    4.2 mi / 1260 ft gain
    Three Top Mountain sits within the same vicinity of Elk Knob. The mountain gets its name from its three prominent rock projections at its peak. The highest point, unofficially named “Big Rock”, is at an elevation of 5020 feet. Prior to the originally named rock peak, you will arrive at Huckleb...
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  • Todd, North Carolina

    Hike the Elk Knob Summit Trail

    5.0
    3.8 mi / 1000 ft gain
    There are no bathrooms at the trailhead, so if needed, drive a little past it to the park bathrooms on the left. Park at the summit trailhead and start your hike on the new gravel path. The trail gains 1000 ft in elevation in just under 2 miles so take your time if need be - and bring plenty of w...
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  • Mouth of Wilson, Virginia

    Twin Pinnacles Loop

    5.0
    1.35 mi / 157 ft gain
    Park at the Visitor Center; don't stress when you get to the parking lot and can't see it, it's up the hill. From the parking lot hike across the road and find the staircase. Follow this up to the Visitor Center. If you're standing in front of the Visitor Center, the trailhead will be to the left...
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  • Mouth of Wilson, Virginia

    Stamper's Branch Trail

    3.37 mi / 781 ft gain
    Stamper's Branch Trail is an out-and-back trail that provides a good opportunity to view wildlife located near Mouth of Wilson, Virginia.
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  • Mouth of Wilson, Virginia

    Mount Rogers via Appalachian Trail

    5.0
    9.1 mi / 1549 ft gain
    First of all, who doesn't love wild ponies!  There are tons of ponies here, and although they are wild, they are not afraid of people and you can get pretty close (just don't feed them!).   Once you enter Grayson Highlands State Park, you will see a parking lot for Massie Gap a few miles in, par...
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  • Mouth of Wilson, Virginia

    Backpack the Grayson Highlands

    4.8
    9.1 mi / 1549 ft gain
    Spanning roughly 4500 acres, located in a portion of Jefferson National Forest, looming under the highest peak in Virginia lies the Grayson Highlands. A part of Virginia’s State Parks system and a United States National Landmark, located in Mouth of Wilson, Virginia, the Highlands are home to wil...
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  • Mouth of Wilson, Virginia

    Photograph Wild Horses at Grayson Highlands State Park

    4.6
    1.8 mi / 306 ft gain
    The wild horses gather on top of the bald at the end of Horse Trail North located in Grayson Highlands State Park. Because they are wild, it is important to remember not to touch or feed the horses. The horses are accustomed to hikers and will allow you in their near proximity, but bring a zoom l...
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  • Mouth of Wilson, Virginia

    Rhododendron Trail to Rock Croppings

    5.0
    1.77 mi / 289 ft gain
    In order to go when the Rhododendron are blooming you'll need to aim for the first three weeks of June.  Starting from the Massies Gap parking area in the Grayson Highlands State Park, follow the trail through the field and towards the base of a large hill. You will see a fence that runs along t...
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  • Mouth of Wilson, Virginia

    Hike and Fish Cabin Creek Trail

    5.0
    1.8 mi / 400 ft gain
    Starting at the Massie Gap Parking Area follow the paved road down towards the woods. You will see a gravel dirt path off the side of the road to your right that heads back towards the woods. A couple steps down the trail you will see a metal pole with "Cabin Creek Trail" written on it. Follow th...
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