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Mount Mitchell

Difficult
 4.6 (30) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

Ascend the tallest peak in The East from humble beginnings in Briar Bottom Group Campground.


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Map Key

11.7

Miles

18.8

KM

Out and Back

6,663' 2,031 m

High

3,012' 918 m

Low

3,651' 1,113 m

Up

3,650' 1,113 m

Down

12%

Avg Grade (7°)

43%

Max Grade (23°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Commonly Backpacked · Fall Colors · River/Creek · Views

This park is EXTREMELY dog friendly, granted they must be kept on a leash no longer than 6 ft.

Overview

This fantastic hike takes you from Briar Bottom Group Campground (Poplar Shelter) to the summit of Mt. Mitchell and back again.

Need to Know

There is no overnight parking at the campground, so you'll have to park a good way down the road if you want to park overnight.

Description

Leaving from Poplar Shelter, follow the Mt. Mitchell Trail #190 as it makes a steady climb of over 3600 feet on a safe and well marked, albeit-technical, trail along multiple ridgelines to the summit. When on trail, be sure to follow blue trail blazes whatever you do. This should ensure you make it to the right place, but if in doubt, you can always use the Hiking Project mobile app to keep you on track.

If you're looking to do this as an overnight, keep your eyes peeled for dispersed campsites and accompanying fire rings. Some of the best spots are located near mile three at a field and stream located near the trail, as well as around mile four near Commissary Ridge and an adjoining field.

Upon reaching the top of the Mt. Mitchell Trail #190, bear left onto the Mt. Mitchell Summit Trail for otherworldly views from the overlook before making the trek back to the campground. If you'd prefer not to make the trek down and can arrange a shuttle, cars can reach the summit via NC 128.

Contacts

Shared By:

Matthew Meek

Trail Ratings

  4.6 from 30 votes

#262

Overall
  4.6 from 30 votes
5 Star
70%
4 Star
23%
3 Star
7%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#262

Overall
232 Views Last Month
7,259 Since Jun 20, 2016
Difficult

0%
0%
7%
4%
82%
7%

Photos

View from the Mt. Mitchell summit.
Mar 10, 2016 near Burnsville, NC
View towards Maple Bald
Jul 26, 2018 near Burnsville, NC
Summit view
Aug 19, 2018 near Burnsville, NC
Mountain views abound on this portion of the MST.
May 14, 2017 near Black M…, NC
Mt. Mitchell summit. Photo by Jake Blood.
Mar 25, 2016 near Burnsville, NC
Backcountry Campsite Commissary Hill at intersection of Mt Mitchell Trail #190 and Horse trail
Jan 12, 2020 near Black M…, NC

Weather


Current Trail Conditions

Update Conditions
All Clear 33 days ago See History
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Check-Ins

Jul 19, 2020
Kyle Dowdall
Hiked from the campground to the top. Almost 13 miles. One of my favorite hikes. Top viewing area was closed due to COVID, but you can still enjoy… 13mi
Jun 13, 2020
Maria Martinez
May 25, 2020
Alex Speed
Super brutal hike but very rewarding 12mi — 6h 59m
Oct 12, 2019
Mitch Suzara
Aug 17, 2019
Vivek Patel
Strenuous hike with steady uphill climb, takes about 230 hr to summit(no brakes). 2 hrs downhill. No overlook until observatory. 11.7mi — 4h 45m
Jul 27, 2019
Max Terzano
Very tough hike. A rooty, rocky trail with a nice elevation gain. The knees definitely felt it. Great 360 degree views from the top if few tourists. 11.7mi
Jul 5, 2019
Alex Most