Ascent of Brasstown Bald on 2012-06-28

Climber: Alan Barber

Date:Thursday, June 28, 2012
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Brasstown Bald
    Elevation:4784 ft / 1458 m

Ascent Trip Report

Driving toward Brasstown Bald, we left Clingmans Dome at 9:30 am and stayed on US 441 all the way to Franklin. From there we turned south, crossed the border, and went to Hiawassee Georgia. We got lost a little but soon found our way to the correct road and reached the entrance to the Brasstown Bald Park in about 2 hours 45 minutes.

Brasstown Bald Georgia is the 25th highest high point at an elevation of 4,784 feet. The turn off from the Smoky Mountain Parkway is well labeled and we could see the summit tower through the trees on the drive up. We paid our parking lot admission but declined to pay an additional fee to take the shuttle bus to the summit. The park is very well equipped. The trailhead is between the restrooms and the gift shop.

The asphalt path which snakes through the trees to the summit is 0.6 mile long and gains 400 feet. A memorial to Georgia Supreme Court Judge T.S. Candler is located near the trail head.
We got our water bottles and camera and began the hike up the winding trail to the top. We saw several interesting things on the trail including blooming Rhododendrons and a salamander.

The summit has a visitors’ center in addition to the large observation tower. Once we reached the summit, we asked the ranger to unlock the door under the tower stairs to show us the USGS marker. He also showed us the bolder which he believes to be the actual highest point on the mountain. The visitors’ center at the summit was very nice and has displays and a movie about Brasstown Bald. It even has an elevator for those who cannot climb the stairs to the visitor’s center platform.

After enjoying the views of the lake to the North and the mountains of the Smoky Mountain Range, we headed back to the parking lot. I could not resist picking up a commemorative Brasstown Bald pin.We left the parking lot at about 1:30 pm, and headed out for our next high point: Cheaha Mountain AL.
Summary Total Data
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail
    Weather:Pleasant, Breezy, Clear

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