Cocke County High Point Trip Report

Old Black

Date: June 4, 2000
Author: Ken Oeser

From Interstate 40 in Tennessee just west of the North Carolina state line, take the Foothills Parkway exit or Highway 321 exit near Newport, and drive west to Cosby. From Cosby, follow the signs south to Cosby Campground. Park in the large parking lot just before the campground and hike up the road into the campground and up the first road on the right. Stay on the outside road to the trailhead for the Snake Den Ridge Trail. Hike up this trail 4.6 miles to the junction with the Maddron Bald Trail (going downhill), and hike uphill 0.7 mile to the junction with the Appalachian Trail. Turn right (southwest) and hike about a mile to the highest point of the trail on Old Black. This is a few hundred feet past a nice, open ridge section of the trail with views both directions. From the high point of the trail, bushwhack east a few hundred feet to the top of the hill, watching your route closely. There is much fallen timber and thick shrubbery to get through to the top. A compass would be best, but I used an altimeter to know if I went too far below trail elevation. Total gain is about 4250 feet from the parking lot. This trail goes another 1.25 or so miles to the base of Mt Guyot, a county highpoint of North Carolina, which also requires a bushwhack through thick evergreens at first, then open conifers and open areas to the top.