The popular 2.7-mile hike to the 5,721-foot summit is a great place to stop along the Parkway to stretch your legs. For us we decided to do a sunset/moon-rise hike!
This was a 750 foot climb to the top in the last half of the hike and was like climbing stairs – a lot of them!
All in all it was a short hike (just over a mile) to the summit, after a false start at the Pisgah Inn, Pam reminded me of a previous hike we’d done in May that actually passed by the trail head. We got on the same page, got back in the car and headed to the the far end of the Mount Pisgah Parking Area.
The hike begins relatively easy, and after a half mile or so changes to a steeper section, did I mention stairs? Well, get ready for some stairs, the rest of the way to the top.
At the summit, you’ll find a TV transmission tower for WLOS-TV Channel 13 from Asheville and an observation deck apparently to keep hikers away from the massive antenna tower.
The view was spectacular. We could see in every direction for miles and miles – that sounds like a song….
At dusk, we donned out headlamps in anticipation, the sunset was stunning, we ate our dinner on the rocks while we relaxed from the final climb that got us here as we waited for the moon rise. The moon came up in a yellowish amber color larger than you’d expect even for a full moon – maybe because we were so high up? We saw it thru the trees as we hiked down in pitch black darkness. Fortunately, we hadn’t forgotten our headlamps – they are a requirement!
On the way home we tried and tried to capture the moon in photos and were completely unsuccessful! Finally we took one with our car headlights on the sign and the moon in the back – it too was not perfect, but it shows how much fun we had trying!
We left Basswood at 5:pm sharp (it was about an hour drive), started hike at 6:15 pm, sunset was at 7:57 and moon rise was at 8:28. Of course we’ll need to adjust for the next time we go – we will definitely go again!
Take the Blue Ridge Parkway north from Sylva 45 to 60 minutes to Milepost 407.6.