Green Knob TR 182

This trail follows a ridge line to the Green Knob Lookout Tower at 5,090 feet. The trail is very steep and gets rocky so some minor scrambling is required. The trail provides amazing views of this beautiful mountainous region. After 2.8 miles the trail reaches the Green Knob Lookout Tower on the right side. From the tower the trail descends for 0.5 mile with switchbacks to the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Total Length: 3.3 miles

Total Elevation Change: 2,080 feet

Degree of Difficulty: Difficult

Beginning Point: Black Mountain Campground

Ending Point: Blue Ridge Parkway Milepost 350.4

Average Hiking Time: 4.5 hours (one way)

Amount of Use: Heavy

Blaze Color: White

Area Trail Map: South Toe River, Mount Mitchell & Big Ivy Trail Map

USGS Quad Maps: Celo and Marion West

General Information


From Burnsville, go east on US 19E for about 4.3 miles. Turn right onto NC 80. After 0.6 miles, turn right again to stay on NC 80. Follow this road for 11.6 miles. After passing Mt. Mitchell Golf Course, turn right onto South Toe River Road/NFSR 472. Road changes to gravel. At intersection, turn right toward Black Mountain Campground. Parking is located across the river from the campground entrance. Hikers may also access the trail from the Blue Ridge Parkway's Green Knob Overlook, where the trailhead is 100 yards north of the overlook.


Day Hiking

Viewing Scenery