This is one to check out soon in NC….
This is a simple out-and-back on the Mountains-to-Sea Trail. Wooded, shaded, beauty with a lovely view at the mid point. Most of the elevation gain is in the first half, with a super easy downhill return.
The trail is very clear with no major hazards. Follow the white circle of the MST, which goes in front of the building. This section of the MST on a graveled nature trail and is lined with interpretive signboards, highlighting native trees and their traditional applications.
At 0.2 mile, the MST and the nature trail split. Take a right to stay on the MST. The trail crosses Riceville Road on a bridge on the left side of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Though you are now fully in the woods, you’ll pass a bench at 0.4 mile and another one soon after. At 0.9 mile, a side trail shoots off to the left. Stay on the MST, which parallels the Parkway.
At 1.1 miles, cross the Blue Ridge Parkway and look for an MST post showing you the way. The trail starts climbing above the Parkway. It passes a blue dot trail on the left, which you should ignore.
Reach a side trail to the left at 2.4 miles. The tree on the right side of the MST might have a small red dot along with a white circle. Take a left and go down a little to Lunch Rocks/Haw Creek Overlook. You’re on a large rock outcropping with a shelf convenient for sitting, surrounded by pitch pines and blueberry bushes looking west on the Haw Creek Valley and the Parkway at Haw Creek Valley
The entrance road is near Milepost 383. As you arrive, pass the front of the building on your right. Keep going to the second parking area furthest from the building and park.