Pisgah National Forest features over 500,000 acres and is located near the city of Asheville, NC. The forest was part of the first land purchased for the creation of national forests in the eastern U.S. It was also the location of the first school of forestry, which is now a historic site. While in the forest, you will have the opportunity to take in high mountain peaks, tall waterfalls, and an incredible number of trails. There are various types of campgrounds, including several equestrian camps, and there is always a nearby trail to walk.
Looking Glass Rock Trail is an in-and-out trail located near Brevard, NC, that consists of a picturesque hike with wildflowers in the spring months. The two-mile mark has a short side trail with a nice viewpoint, and the end of the trail has a great view at the top. Dogs are allowed on a leash.
Length: 6.1 miles
Catawba Falls Trail is an in-and-out trail located near Black Mountain, NC, that features a waterfall. The trail is easy and short, and young children can walk the path as well.
Length: 2.3 miles
Brassy Ridge Bald via Appalachian Trail is an in-and-out trail located near Bakersville, NC, that features beautiful wildflowers in the spring. The trail branches off the Roan Mountains section of the Appalachian Trail and reaches Round Bald, Jane Bald, and, finally, Grassy Bald. Grassy Ridge is the longest grassy bald in the Appalachian Mountains. Dogs are allowed if they are leashed.
Length: 4.7 miles
Mount Mitchell Trail is an in-and-out trail located near Montreat, NC, that is a challenging hike to Mount Mitchell, the highest peak east of the Mississippi. The trail begins at the Black Mountain Campground and leads to the Mount Mitchell summit parking area. From here, it is a short hike to the summit observation deck, and on clear days you can see Grandfather Mountain and Table Rock. The summit has a gift shop, restrooms and a snack stand. From the summit, hikers can take the three-mile-loop Deep Gap Trail to Mount Craig, the second-highest peak east of the Mississippi.
Length: 11.1 miles
Moore Cove Falls Trail is an in-and-out trail located near Pisgah National Forest, NC, that is an easy and kid-friendly hike. The falls are approximately 50 feet high and cascade over a rock overhang. There are several small stream crossings that add to the fun.
Length: 1.2 miles
There are plenty of opportunities for recreation in the great outdoors in the Pisgah National Forest. Besides hiking, swimming, and camping, you will also have many chances to view the wildlife. Common animals include black bears, bobcats, foxes, deer, and groundhogs, and less common species include eastern spotted skunks, peregrine falcons, and the hellbender great salamander. Most of the waterways have brown, rainbow, and brook trout.
Pisgah National Park is mostly free from light pollution and offers great night sky views. You can also visit the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) in the forest. PARI was a NASA site and is now a non-profit center with displays of space artifacts and meteorites. The center hosts periodic sky-gazing events on Friday and Saturday nights from an observation deck that is on a high mountain ridge.
Geocaching is allowed under certain restrictions. Check the regulations before you go.
Address: 1600 Pisgah Hwy, Pisgah Forest, NC 28768
Fee: Entry fee $0
North Carolina is a beautiful state to visit, with a number of lakes, rivers, and forests that beckon all to come and experience. The state has a range of landscapes from the Appalachian Mountains to the west and the coastal regions of the Atlantic to the east, and taking an RV trip through Pisgah National Forest will allow you to easily visit all the areas you would most like to see. There are endless recreational activities available, as well as several large urban areas that offer a change of pace during your travels. With the right itinerary, your RV road trip can be the gateway to the trip of a lifetime.