Friday Hoofers

Do not follow where the path may lead.  Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail. –Ralph Waldo Emerson

The Friday Hoofer hikes are the longest, have more climb, and are consistently the most strenuous of the five groups.   Please consult with one of the hike leaders before hiking with this group.  We normally ask potential Friday Hoofers to first hike with the Wednesday Striders.

Here is a Friday Hoofer Video that describes some of the fun we experience during our hikes.

Time:  Unless noted in the hike description the regular start time is 9:00 am.  Please arrive 10 minutes early for a prompt departure.

Updates:  Updates are posted on the Updates page every Thursday morning before the Friday hike, and sometimes at other times.  Because of the uncertain weather in Western North Carolina an update may be posted the morning of the hike changing or cancelling the hike.  Hikers are encouraged to check for updates before heading to the meeting place.  If you would like to receive updates sent directly to your email, press the “+Follow” button at the lower right hand corner of any web page and provide your email address.

Note: Do NOT reply to the Update emails. Only use the RSVP link to reply.

Assembly:  Three different Assembly Area locations are generally used depending upon the location of the hike.  The schedule specifies a starting location for each hike, which differs from hike to hike.  The three starting locations are the Walmart parking lot in Pisgah Forest, Catheys Creek Road at US64 and the Cedar Mountain Community Center parking lot.  Details for each location are given in the Assembly Areas tab. Note: the assembly area may be different from these three areas so always check the Update for the hike.

Photos: Pictures taken during some of the hikes can be found here.

Friday Hoofer Hike Leaders :
David Yeager–
Vince Castello–

COVID UPDATE: We are now carpooling again for all fully vaccinated individuals. For those folks car pooling, mask usage is at the discretion of the car pool driver. Non-vaccinated individuals are free to drive on their own or pool with anyone who is OK with doing so.

Friday Hoofer Spring 2022 Schedule

April 1 Hilliard Falls
~11 mi, ~2700cl, R10+
Meet at Catheys Creek Road

This is a new hike. From Bad Creek Access we hike an out-and-back on the Foothills Trail to Hilliard Falls where we have lunch.

April 8 Eagle Rock/Grey Rock
10 mi, 2200’cl, R10
Meet at Walmart parking area or at the Ingles on US25/64

The hike begins at Eagle Rock in Rutherford County and follows the Weedpatch Trail to the Grey Rock Overlook. Here we have a great view of the Rumbling Bald/Party Rock to Eagle Rock hike area. We lunch on Grey Rock and return uphill back to Eagle Rock.

April 15 Sassafras Mtn to Pinnacle Mtn
11.5 mi, 3000’cl, R10+
Meet at Catheys Creek Road

This is a variation of the Sassafras to Table Rock key exchange. From the Sassafras parking area we hike the Foothills Trail to Pinnacle Mtn where we lunch before our return trip to Sassafras.

April 22 Ellicott Rock
7 mi, 800’cl, R7
Meet at Catheys Creek Road

From Burrells Ford Road we hike the Chattooga River trail in search of Ellicott Rock. Along the way we stop at Spoonauger Falls. After lunch we retrace our steps back to our cars.

April 29 Ashmore Preserve to US276
9 mi, 2249’cl, R10
Meet at Cedar Mt. Community Center

From Persimmon Ridge Road we first do an out-and-back to High Rock Overlook. Then we take the Mountain Bridge Passage Trail to Pinnacle Pass Trail and on to our shuttle vehicles on US276.

May 6 Buckeye Gap – Haywood Gap
8 mi, 1600’cl, R10
Meet at Catheys Creek Road

From the Rough Butt Overlook on the Parkway we hike down, down, down the Buckeye Gap trail to the Middle Prong for lunch. Then we hike up, up, up the Haywood Gap trail to the Parkway. We walk the Parkway back to our cars.

May 13 Laurel Valley to Hawkins Falls
10 mi, 1580’cl, R10
Meet at Catheys Creek

From the Laurel Valley parking area off of 215 we hike the Foothills Trail to Hawkins Falls and back.

May 20 Shining Rock (The Easy Way)
10mi, 1500’cl, R10
Meet at Walmart

We’ll head over to Shining Rock from the Big Sam parking area via the Art Loeb and/or Ivestor Gap trails.

May 27 Black Balsam/Devil’s Courthouse (P400)
10 mi, 1700’cl, R10
Meet at Catheys Creek Road

From NC215 we take the MTS, Little Sam, Flat Laurel Creek to Sam Knob parking, then the Black Balsam spur, Art Loeb and MTS to Black Balsam and hike the parkway and NC215 down to our cars.

June 3 Bull Gap to Lane Pinnacle
~9 mi, 2400’cl, R10+
Meet at Walmart or Ingles in Mills River

From Bull Gap on Ox Creek Road we hike the MST past Rattlesnake Lodge to Lane Pinnacle for lunch, after which we retrace our steps to our cars.

June 10 Graveyard Fields Ramble
7mi, 1350’cl, R8
Meet at Walmart

The hike starts across the BRP from Graveyard Fields parking. We head up the Pisgah Ridge trail crossing the BRP to the MST. We hike the MST and take the last exit back to Graveyard Fields.

June 17 Pisgah Inn to Sleepy Gap Overlook
12 mi, 2100’cl, R10+
Meet at Walmart

From the Pisgah Inn we hike the MST to Sleepy Gap Overlook where we shuttle back to Pisgah Inn.

June 24 Wolf Ford Loop
12.8 mi, 1900’cl, R10+
Meet at Walmart

From Wolf Ford Rd we hike FSR5016 to Horse Cove Gap to Squirrel Gap to the South Mills River Trail and back to our cars.