Watauga County High Point Trip Report

Grandfather Mtn (5964 ft)

Author: Ron Tagliapietra

Park at the main visitor center near the swinging bridge (just off the Blue Ridge Parkway between Blowing Rock and Linville, NC). Admission fee includes free topographic trail map, and notice that the mountain has five named peaks. Hike 2.2 miles to Calloway Peak. You will cross McRae Peak, Attic Window, and Raven Rocks en route. The rugged trail even requires climbing a couple of ladders!

Views from the steep craggy ridge are dramatic. A bit beyond the summit is the Caldwell Co. HP (use trail map). For more on the main hike, see Summits of the South by Brian Boyd. You will probably want to visit the swinging pedestrian bridge before you leave, which offers access to the lowest and last of the five summits, Linville Peak. At least one frequent climber of all the Southern Sixers considers this his favorite peak, so don't ignore this twofer just because of the admission fee. Instead be glad the private owners permit access at all!