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 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.

Assembly:  Three different Assembly Area locations are 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 BiLo Grocery Store 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: during the Pandemic we are typically meeting at the trailheads or at a caravan location identified in the hike descriptions.

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

Friday Hoofer Hike Leaders (as of 1/1/2020):
David Yeager–
Vince Castello–

Friday Hoofer Fall/Early Winter 2020 Schedule

Well COVID is still with us so we are continuing with our no group carpooling approach – we will meet at the appropriate trailhead parking areas. These will be identified in the Updates if not in the text below.

September 25-Feature Hike (P400)
11.4 mi, 2300’cl, R10+
, Previously postponed due to weather
Starting on NC215 at the MST TH, we walk down to and on the Flat Laurel Creek Trail, then up Sam Knob, then to Sam Knob parking lot and up Art Loeb Spur to lower view from Black Balsam; Art Loeb and then MST takes us to Devil’s Courthouse and then MST to where we started. This hike has at least 23 features (not including Devil’s Courthouse), including 4 waterfalls, a cascade and at least 15 great views.

October 2 Mt Mitchell Peak Experience (SB6K)
~8.5mi, 2600’ cl, R10, Previously postponed due to weather
We start at the top parking lot at Mt Mitchell and hike the Black Mountain Crest trail to Winter Star Mountain, rocking and rolling over several 6000+ peaks in between (Mt. Craig, Big Tom, Balsam Cone, Cattail Peak and Winter Star). At Winter Star and turn around and ride the coaster back to our cars.

October 9 Panthertown Waterfalls
9 mi, 1600’cl, R8, Previously postponed due to weather
From the Cold Mountain parking lot we hike to the waterfalls on the Tuckasegee River including Red Butt, Elbow, Riding Ford, Jawbone and Warden Falls. Then on the way back we stop at Schoolhouse Falls, Mac’s Falls, Pothole Falls and Greenland Creek Falls on Greenland Creek before heading back to our cars. Wear old hiking shoes you don’t mind getting wet.

October 16 Little East Fork/Art Loeb
12.6 mi, 2659’cl, R10+

From the Boy Scout Camp we will take the Little East Fork trail to Shining Rock where we will connect with the Art Loeb Trail. Hopefully we will see some Fall colors along the way. We will take Art Loeb to Deep Gap and back to our cars.

October 23 Bearwallow Mountain
8 mi, 2350’cl, R8

At 4,232 feet above sea level, Bearwallow Mountain stands as the highest peak in the widely-visible Bearwallow Highlands range. From the Wildcat Rock – Little Bearwallow Mountain trailhead across US74 from the Florence Nature Preserve near Gerton, NC we hike to Wildcat Falls, Wildcat Rock, Little Bearwallow Mountain and finally to the top of Bearwallow Mountain for a view of 60 miles of the BRP. After lunch overlooking Lake Lure we reverse our route and return to our cars on US74.

October 30 Coontree/Bennett Gap/Pressley Cove/Maxwell Cove/Perry Cove (P400)
11 mi, 3000’cl, R10

We’ll start at the Coontree trail parking lot and hike up the south side of the Coontree loop to Coontree Gap where we pick up the Bennett Gap trail. Then we cross Avery Creek road and hike the Pressley Cove trail to Clawhammer road. We come back via the Maxwell Cove trai to Perry Cove trail to the Bennett Gap trail to the north side of the Coontree trail and back to our cars.

November 6 Rim of the Gap
11mi, 2300’cl, R10

From the Caesars Head visitor center on US276 we hike the Frank Coggins trail to the Rim of the Gap trail in Jones Gap State Park. After trekking the Rim of the Gap, we hike the Pinnacle Pass trail to Oil Camp Creek to the Naturland Trust Trail back to our cars.

November 13 Panthertown/Bethel Alter
8 mi, 1700’ cl, R8

From the Cold Mountain parking lot we hike past Schoolhouse Falls to Little Green Creek then up to Bethel Alter.

November 20 Green River Game Lands
11 mi; 2200’cl, R8

From the Rock Hop trail head on Big Hungry Rd we do a lollypop hike on Rock Hop, Long Ridge, Stair Step Falls, Turkey Gut, and Bluff trails down to the Green River. Then along the Green River Cove Trail with plenty of lunch spot opportunities by the river. Onto Pulliam Creek Trail with a stop to go down to the Narrows. Carry on Pulliam Creek to Bishop Branch.

November 27
Gobbler’s Choice

December 4 Mount Cammerer (SB6K)
12 mi, 3300cl, R10+

Meet at BiLo for caravan.
From the Big Creek trailhead off of I40, we hike the Chestnut Branch trail to the AT. Then we take the AT to a side trail to the historic forest lookout atop Mt. Cammerer.

December 11 Table Rock
11mi. 3400’cl, R10

Meet at Cedar Mountain Community Center for caravan.
From the Table Rock trailhead we hike up to the overlook. Then we take a side loop and hike toward Pinnacle Mountain and another spectacular overlook.

December 18 (P400) Neil Gap Loop
9 mi, 1500’cl, R9

From Lowes parking we walk the Eastatoe trail to the Art Loeb trail. Then we hike up to Neil Gap to the North Slope Connector. From there we hike the North Slope trail through the Davidson River campground to the Art Loeb trail and back to our cars.

December 25
Santa’s Choice