2.9 mi - Moderate - This trail requires a car switch if you want to avoid backtracking. Most begin from Bennett Gap and travel downhill. This trail is mainly a ridgetop trail and affords nice views of the Pisgah Ledge, Looking Glass Rock, the Avery Creek valley, and Black Mountain. The terrain and vegetation varies quite a bit as you pass through a wildlife opening, traverse rocky outcrops, drop down through two gaps and climb over Coontree Mountain. After passing Coontree Gap, the trail crosses some small streams that add an array of ferns, mosses and wildflowers to the variety in vegetation. You will notice the Bennett Gap Trail intersects the Perry Cove Trail (#151) at Saddle Gap, and then shares the trail with almost one mile of the Coontree Loop (#144)—be sure to follow the red blazes. In the vicinity of the southern trailhead, combinations of other trails can return you to Bennett Gap if you are interested in a longer trip.
Approximate Elevation Change: 1,000 feet
At a Glance
||Mountain Biking Trail: Mountain biking and hiking trail. Bikers please yield to hikers. Mountain biking prohibited in wilderness areas.
||US Forest Service
Directions: From the Pisgah District Ranger Station/Visitor Center parking lot, turn right (north) onto US 276, and drive approximately 9 miles to FS 477 (Avery Creek Rd). Turn right (south) onto FS 477 for approximately 2½ miles to the parking area at Bennett Gap, where there is parking for a few cars. The trail begins at a nearby gate. Alternatively, drive ½ mile north from the Visitor Center parking lot, and turn right (north) onto FS 477; proceed approximately 1¼ miles to the southern trailhead, just short of the third bridge (a low-profile concrete bridge without railings), where there is minimal parking space; the trailhead sign is off the road, approximately 20 yards up the trail.