“The southeastern portion of the Linville Gorge Wilderness Loop with spectacular overlooks.
— Max Willner
Birding · Fall Colors · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife
Hunting and fishing are allowed, but permits are required. Camping is permitted in the gorge, but permits are required from May 1 through October 31.
Shortoff Mountain Trail is, for the most part, a ridge trail offering spectacular views of the gorge to the north.
The trail can be accessed via Wolf Pit Trail
to the south or from the Table Rock Parking Area.
Shortoff Mountain Trail is a wonderful backpacking location with ideal camping spots and unmatched scenery. As part of the Linville Gorge Wilderness Loop
, this trail comprises most of the eastern portion of the loop. It's also the more clearly marked of the trails in the area, making it easier to navigate for novice runners.
One of the most favorable campsites is at the Big Flat Rock Overlook. There is an open portion of ground ideal for multiple tents. From the campsite, campers can look out into the Gorge.
It is also quite apparent that Shortoff Mountain Trail has been a host to a number of forest fires in the past few years, providing a remarkable run amongst scorched trees.
This trail is also part of the Mountains to Sea Trail (MST). For more information concerning the MST, please refer to ncmst.org/
. At the end of the trail, runners can head north towards Shortoff Mountain and Table rock Mountain or south towards the Linville River.
Flora & Fauna
Local flora - rhododendron, sand mrtyle, red chokeberry, azalea, turkey beard, bristly locust, yellow root, silverbell, orchids, ninebark, and wild indigo.
Local fauna - white-tail deer, black bears, squirrel, raccoon, grouse, turkey, vultures, owls, and hawks. As for snakes, there are copperheads and timber rattlesnakes.