Welcome to Hiking the Carolinas

Return to the Home Page

Cherohala Sunset

Sunset from the Cherohala Skyway. This "Blue Ridge Parkway Clone" is known for overlooks that peer into the stunning beauty of the Joyce Kilmer Wilderness. A 35+ mile drive that opened in 1996 that is well suited for "Family Fun". With several short trails that lead to more views this is a destination well suited for novice hikers.   Recommendations for good, short hikes are the following:

Hooper Bald
A short Hike out on to the site of a former hunting club. At the turn of the
century a Northern businessman fenced in the bald and stocked it with exotic
game. He charged other "big city" hunters to come there and hunt these
animals. Because of the remote location he was unable to make his "business"
work. Subsequently, due to neglect, the fences that contained the animals
were breached. The only animal to survive this climate was the Russian Boer.
Thus the presence of these non-indigenous animals were established in the
Southern Appalachians. Hooper Bald rest area is well marked and so is the
1/2 mile trail out onto the bald.

Be sure to stop at the National Forest Ranger station just outside of
Robbinsville. They are on the map or you can just call them.
Ask for ILA Hatter, she is incredibly knowledgeable about the area and has
great stories. Her specialty is wild herbs and flowers.
Check out the Skyway while it is still crowd free.
Cheoah Ranger District   Robbinsville, N.C.  (828) 479-6431

  to the page that you came from