Summey Cove Trail #129


2.0 mi - Moderate - Summey Cove Trail is lightly traveled between NC 215 and the side trail to Courthouse Falls (see below). It quickly leaves Bee Tree Branch and ascends steeply to a gap on Big Fork Ridge. The hard part now over, the trail descends steeply toward a stream crossing in Summey Cove. Immediately afterward, there is a sharp turn to the right, signaled by a double paint blaze. The trail later crosses Mill Station Creek via a primitive footbridge, and then passes a nearby grassy opening, where spring daffodils are reminders of an historic home site, now a primitive campsite. It continues on an easy grade to the short spur trail leading to Courthouse Falls, one of the most picturesque waterfalls in the Pisgah District: The spur is in a wide, smooth, sweeping, leftward curve of the main trail, and traverses downward to your right; though there may be no signs or blazes visible, two natural stone steps at its top help distinguish it. The main trail continues easily along an old roadbed while offering nice views of the creek, but stays damp year round. It soon crosses a bridge over Courthouse Creek and ends at FS 140.

 Approximate Elevation Change: 200 feet
Blaze: Blue

At a Glance

Open Season: Year-round
Usage: Heavy
Restrictions: Mountain Biking Trail: Mountain biking and hiking trail. Bikers please yield to hikers. Mountain biking prohibited in wilderness areas.
Water: yes
Restroom: none
Operated By: US Forest Service

General Information

Directions: Via paved roads: Leaving Pisgah District Ranger Station/Visitor Center parking lot, go left (south) on US 276 for approximately 1.5 miles, then right (west) on US 64. Go west on NC 64 for approximately 15 miles; turn right (north) on NC 215. Proceed north 10½ miles on NC 215 to FS 140 (Courthouse Creek Road) on your right. Continue 1.3 miles further, to a small stream, Bee Tree Branch; there is roadside parking on the left, before the road bridge. Alternative route through forest: From Pisgah District Ranger Station/Visitor Center parking lot, turn right (north) on US 276. Proceed approximately 3½ miles north, and turn left onto FS 475 (Davidson River Road, signed for the Pisgah Center for Wildlife Education and state Fish Hatchery). Drive approximately 1½ miles (paved road) to the Center for Wildlife Education and then approximately 5.3 miles beyond it (via gravel road) to SR 1327 (Shoal Creek Road; paved), then SR 1328 (Clinic Road; also paved), the latter of which intersects NC 215. Turn right (north), go 2.6 miles to FS 140. Continue as described above. (NOTE: The trailhead is 5¼ miles south of the Blue Ridge Parkway on NC 215.)



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