Snowy Six Mile Hike
I hiked to Looking Glass Rock the week after the massive snowstorm that hit the east coast in January. While the day was gorgeous and a balmy 55 degrees, I could tell the minute I entered Pisgah National Forest that I hadn’t thought this completely through. This was just another time where the ever-present thought “what have you gotten yourself into” rang in my ears. I hadn’t even considered that perhaps there were still feet of snow in the higher elevations. Of a national forest. Where there is nothing to clear it away from the trail.
Coming upon the parking area, it was obvious that I was not the only one who needed the refuge of the snowy mountains. After some issues with parking, I quickly realized that seeing the trail would not be a problem either. Plenty of people (and dogs) had traversed the path in the days since the snow. Although the path was easily visible, it was an arduous uphill hike made slippery by the snow. I would not have been able to make the trek without my hiking poles (which I adore and you will come to see I rely heavily upon). The payoff once at Looking Glass Rock is worth it. It’s an excellent, albeit somewhat precarious, place to sit in the sun and eat your lunch.
Observations along the path: I was the only single person. For over six miles. Literally, I was the only person on the trail (of which there were many) who was by herself. I was, perhaps, one of the oldest trekkers. This was the last hike I made before finally making the decision to purchase a pair of hiking boots. I simply could not comprehend how all these hikers made it back down that mountain without poles; furthermore without falling on their asses from not using said poles!
Trailhead: Looking Glass Rock
Length: 3.1 (for a total of 6.2)
Type: Out & Back
Description: An uphill hike among the trees to Looking Glass Rock where the payoff is an expansive view of the mountains with the Blue Ridge Parkway in the distance.
Where: Pisgah National Forest
Parking: There’s parking at the trailhead, but there are not many spots. Also, the massive amounts of snow on the road did not allow me to park along the road. I parked at the
intersection of US 276 and FR475 in a turnoff by the river.