ElevationAscent: 866' 264 m
Descent: -866' -264 m
High: 2,216' 675 m
Low: 1,352' 412 m
GradeAvg Grade: 7% (4°)
Max Grade: 17% (10°)
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“A steep trail through the woods leading to an overlook with some of the best views in South Mountains State Park.”— Amber Scott
This area was seriously burned in November 2016, and damage from the wildfire is still visible. Mostly consisting of pine trees and oaks, the forest is recovering slowly, but well. Because of the burn, this portion of the forest is sunnier which means there are some views through the trees, but there are also more wildflowers in the spring and summer.
About 1.9 miles into the trail, right where it begins to level off along a ridge, a trail that connects to the Sawtooth Trail heads to the right while the Chestnut Knob Trail turns left. The trail is pretty flat for the final portion until it ends at a rocky slab and an opening in the trees where the views open up across the mountains, and you can see High Shoals Falls, Jacob Fork Gorge, Raven Rock, Hugo Rock, and Crowders Mountain. Sometimes, if it's clear enough, Charlotte is visible on the horizon. Be careful at the overlook though as the rock face drops off abruptly.
After enjoying the view and perhaps enjoying a snack, head back down the Chestnut Knob Trail to the H.Q. Trail, back to the trailhead.
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Need to Know, Flora & Fauna, Runner Notes, History & Background
Land Manager: North Carolina State Park - South Mountains State Park