For the sake of no comments, I’m going to call this hike the trail to Pickens Ridge! (It’s really Pickens Nose) LOL! I’ve been here before as you will read at the end of this post but not in heavy clouds. That’s where we found ourselves on Saturday afternoon—hiking through the clouds. It was fantastic.
If you have never hiked in the fog, you need to to it! Of course, I love views but fog and clouds are super for moody photos. Beth was with us, but I didn’t get a photo of her. So sorry. In fact, several people were hiking with us, and we actually saved two of the young couples from taking wrong turns.
The hike to the top of Pickens Nose is a quick hike in and out of less than two miles. That’s all, but you do get some quick altitude gain, and there are some deep rocky ruts to climb and scramble up thanks to rain and the lack of trail maintenance.
You can find out a lot about this popular trail on line. It’s not that far from northeast Georgia. In fact, we saw other “Toccoa” folks there on this gray day!
Here’s the wrong thing to give someone, who loves to set goals, for her birthday! I reach one goal and then I set a new one! My personal goal is to walk five miles a day. So far, my top is 4.8 miles, but then I’m not hiking along the Blue Ridge. If I were, that goal would be reached easily! Enough of that!
We can make fun of the name of this trail but the hike is awesome. It runs through Rhododendron and Mountain Laurel woods and once you get up the rocky accent, you hike along a ridge line with a soft, leaf strewn forest floor.
You even travel through an awesome Rhododendron tunnel that leads to rocky outcropping of Pickens Nose.
There are no guard rails! Great place for photos. We just didn’t do that on this day.
Then it’s back to the trail where you travel another .25 miles and you come to the main rocky overlook.
The rocks where dry, the clouds thick, and the overlook was overlooking nothing but gray!
As we turned to leave, we could hear others talking about the fog and how amazing it was. Sometimes, you are given little surprises in life that you can’t experience every day. This was one of those times. Grateful!
Here’s the difference of being there on a clear day! Well, a “blue ridge” day that is marked by summer haze that comes from the trees and the leaves!
And here’s the basic info for the trail: The hike departs from the Pickens Nose trailhead along the gravel-paved Forest Road 83 (view maps and driving directions), southeast of where the Appalachian Trail crosses FR83 at Mooney Gap. The trail wanders southbound, climbing through a hardwood forest filled with gnarly-branched rhododendron and mountain laurel. It’s a moderate, but nearly unrelenting, climb to the mountain’s summit but once you hit the summit and step out on the rocky outcroppings, you are treated to some amazing North Carolina views! Hike this trail and take a camera with you!