Ascent of The Pinnacle on 2000-05-26

Climber: Scott Surgent

Date:Friday, May 26, 2000
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:The Pinnacle
    Location:USA-North Carolina
    Elevation:5665 ft / 1726 m

Ascent Trip Report

From where the Mount Mitchell road meets the Blue Ridge Parkway, I drove a half-mile "south" on the Blue Ridge Parkway, to a locked gate alongside the road. This is not an official hiking trail. Thus, there is no parking area here. I had to fit my car off the road and hope it wouldn't get hit.

I crossed the gate, and walked up a jeep road about 50 feet to a trail on my right. This trail quickly attains a ridge, along which it is another mile of steady uphill in the thick forest to the top. The last half-mile or so had "no trespassing" signs posted and an old barbed-wire fence that ran along the ridge, but I believe this only refers to the southern slopes, as they lie inside the Asheville Watershed, which is known to be off-limits. I think the ridge itself is legal.

After about 20 minutes, I came to a rocky jumble, the summit of this little peak and the highpoint of McDowell County. The county line crosses over the top of this peak. In fact, until I set my foot on the tippy top, I spent the entire hike outside McDowell County. The best (and only) views were to the south, as thick forest blocked other views. I stayed a few minutes, then proceeded back to my car and drove up the road to my next objective, Little Pisgah Mountain. Overall, this little sojourn covered two miles round trip and about 400 feet of gain in about 40 minutes.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:400 ft / 121 m
    Round-Trip Distance:2 mi / 3.2 km
    Trailhead:5265 ft / 1604 m
    Route Conditions:
Unmaintained Trail, Bushwhack

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