Western North Carolina's Blue Ridge Mountains are some of the oldest on earth, boasting old-growth forests, pristine streams, and ancient heath balds with stunning views. This guide includes 72 great day hikes ranging from 1 to 13 miles, with destinations like the stone tower of Hanging Rock State Park, Max Patch on the Appalachian Trail, the "Opera Box" at Chimney Rock State Park, the Blue Ridge Parkway's Craggy Gardens, the waterfalls of Linville Gorge, and Gregory Bald in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Each entry includes complete driving and hiking directions, maps, trailhead GPS coordinates, elevation gain, trail highlights, and related historical anecdotes, plus books and movies set in each locale.
Danny Bernstein's book introduces you th the set of western North Carolina's spectacular hiking trails, and gives you something extra: an inside look at the heritage behind the trails that even long-time residents and experienced hikers may not know. With this book, your hike will be more than just a walk in the woods-you'll develop an even greater appreciation for these wonderful mountains.
—Penn Dameron, Executive Director, Blue Ridge National Heritage Area
In addition to providing essential trail logistics for each day hike, this book is a 'trail compendium' that deftly assimilates into each description aspects regarding geology, geography, natural areas, flora, fauna, and human history, not excluding the region's literary and cinematic heritage. It's a guide for the twenty-first century adventurer.
—George Ellison, author of Blue Ridge Nature Journal
Bernstein tells hikers how they can follow the path of the Overmountain Men during the Revolutionary War, visit the fragile environment of Bat Cave Preserve in Hickory Nut Gorge, and walk beneath the monumental and controversial Linn Cove Viaduct.
—Smoky Mountain Times
Discusses the unique history of specific trails and hiking areas, from the origins of NASCAR in Stone Mountain's Wilkes County to Moses H. Cone's Flat Top Manor on the Blue Ridge Parkway.
—Carolina Country Magazine
In every one of her hikes, Bernstein connects the walk and the woods to human activity associated with the area.
The book is laid out like a hiking guide with a brief overview, a map, and trail directions. What sets this guide apart are the sidebars on the history of the area.
Brings the trail to life by giving hikers a colorful story about the place they are venturing.
—Smoky Mountain News