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Art Loeb Trail

 4.5 (32)
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Length


31.1 Miles 50.1 Kilometers


7,578' 2,310 m

Ascent

-6,409' -1,954 m

Descent

9%

Avg Grade (5°)

66%

Max Grade (33°)

6,194' 1,888 m

High

2,138' 652 m

Low

Shared By Zane Ray

Conditions


All Clear 75 days ago
Some Mud, Fallen Trees History

Getting forecast...

One of the longest and more difficult trails in NC; this also ranks as one of the most popular.

Zane Ray

Dogs Leashed

Features Birding · Fall Colors · Views · Wildflowers · Commonly Backpacked

Bear canisters are required for all backcountry camping. No campfires in the Shining Rock Wilderness

Overview

Taken in its entirely, the 30+ mile Art Loeb Trail traverses many significant peaks in North Carolina, which provides ample places to stop to take in the panoramic views. The trail begins with a long and, at times, steep incline at first, but quickly begins a gently rolling descent to the end point.

Many turn this trail into a multi-day trip, but be aware of other trail users who break the trail into segments for day use.

Description

Although one of the longest and more difficult trails in North Carolina, the 30.1-mile Art Loeb Trail still ranks as one of the more popular routes in the area. And no wonder, traveling mainly along peaks and ridges, the trail offers many outstanding panoramic views along the way.

Along its route the Art Loeb Trail traverses several significant peaks, including Black Balsam Knob (6214 feet), Tennant Mountain (6040 feet) and Pilot Mountain (5072 feet). The trail also skirts the base of Cold Mountain which was made famous by the novel and Hollywood film.

Many hikers use the Art Loeb for extended backpacking trips, while others use shorter sections for day hikes, or use connecting trails to form several outstanding loop hikes. Most of the trail is overlapped by the Mountains-to-the Sea Trail which is blazed with 3-inch white dots.

This trail is commonly divided into four separate sections, and more information about the individual sections can be found here:

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Your Check-Ins

Check-Ins

Dec 27, 2019
James Ratliff
31.1mi
Nov 23, 2018
Joseph Anderson
Tough climb up pilot, nice views along the way. 31.1mi
Nov 17, 2018
Rich Hogan
5mi
Nov 2, 2018
Jacob Cantrell
Hiked South to North, beautiful hike with some challenging uphill sections. Can't wait to do it again!
Oct 25, 2018
Stephen Wright
Oct 12, 2018
Jon T
32mi
Sep 24, 2018
Bodhisattva Robinson
staying on black balsam can be scary... 60 mph winds... but amazing views 31mi
Aug 31, 2018
Jean-Claude Linossi
Hiked only a small section of the trail 1mi — 0h 30m

Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 32 votes

#1

in Avery Creek

#120

Overall
  4.5 from 32 votes
5 Star
56%
4 Star
34%
3 Star
9%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Rankings

#1

in Avery Creek

#120

Overall
990 Views Last Month
21,643 Since Sep 22, 2015
Intermediate/Difficult Intermediate/Difficult

0%
3%
0%
52%
38%
7%
It took us three days to hike S to N. We camped 1.6 miles south of Gloucester Gap night 1 and on the back side of Tennett Mountain night 2. Overall, the hike was great, but the climbs were tough (especially Pilot Mountain). Make sure you grab water at Deep Gap before Black Balsam. Also, be careful in Shining Rock Wilderness (post-deep gap) - the trail isn't very well marked, and we got lost. Sep 7, 2017

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