Appalachian Trail - Wayah Bald - NC

May 10, 2011

Today, we hiked on the Appalachian Trail in NC from Wayah Gap (Elevation 4,100 feet) to Wayah Bald (5,385 ft) and back. 8.6 mi. round trip.

HIKERS: Phil Brownrigg, Greta Driggers, Jim Driggers, Pam Euliss, Jack Jacobi, Bruce O'Connor, Jeanne O'Connor, Don Preece, Donna Presley, Tony Presley, Vic Robson, Pom Sinnock, David Whitaker, Geri Whitaker and Carole Wintle.

TRAIL INFO. - This is an outstanding portion of the Appalachian Trail from the Wayah Crest Picnic Area to Wayah Bald. There is quite a bit of elevation change as you climb to the summit of Wayah Bald. After about 2.5 miles, the trail is shared with the Bartram Trail up to the Bald. Wayah Bald is well-known for its breathtaking views of the NC/TN/GA/SC mountains . Trail difficulty rating is moderately strenuous due to elevation change.

Directions: From Franklin, travel west on US 64 for 3 miles to Old Murphy Road where there is a Wayah Bald sign. Turn right and drive .2 mile to Wayah Road (SR 1310). Turn left and continue for 9 miles to Wayah Gap and FR 69. There is an Appalachian Trail crossing sign. (Wayah Crest Picnic Area is on the left.)

Another great day for a hike! Partly cloudy to fair with temperatures ranging from 63 - 77 F.

WILDFLOWERS IN BLOOM: Yellow Lady Slipper Orchid, Large Flowered Trillium, Erect Trillium "Stinking Benjamin", Wood Anemone, Yellow Star Grass, Golden Alexander, Heart-leaf Golden Alexander, Blackberry, Dewberry, Strawberry, Clintonia, Perfoliated Bellwort, Star Chickweed, Bluet, Purple Violet, Sweet White Violet, Jack-in-the-Pulpit, Meadow Rue, Pussytoes, Mountain Vetch, Squawroot, Sasparilla, Blue Cohosh, White Baneberry, Hooked Buttercup, Ragwort, Cinquefoil, Dandelion, Sweetshrub, Serviceberry, Oilnut, False Solomon's Seal, Solomon Seal, Buttercup, Robin's Plantain, Wood Betony, Indian Cucumber Root, Small Bellwort, Perfoliated Bellwort, Striped Maple, Canada Violet, Cut-leaf Toothwort, Foam Flower, False Lily-of-the-Valley, Rosy Twisted Stalk and Native Viburnum.

BIRDS IDENTIFIED: Oven Bird, Red Eyed Vireo, Black & White Warbler, Towhee, Hooded Warbler, Scarlet Tanager, Black Throated Blue Warbler, Veery, Rose Breasted Grosbeak, Pine Warbler, Junco, Chipping Sparrow, Black Throated Green Warbler, Raven.

Scroll down for photos from today!

Parking at Wayah Crest Picnic Area.
Another great day for a hike!
Marker 1/4 mile from the start.
Another great wildflower day! Yellow Lady Slipper.
Along the trail at high elevation, the trees have not leafed out yet.
Trillium erectum "Stinking Benjamin".
The old Wayah Bald fire tower.
Looking down from the tower.
Another view from the tower.
Hiking staffs!
Wood Anemone or Wind Flower (Anemone lancifolia)
Another mountain view!
Bluets (Houstonia caerulea)
The OFHC gang for today's hike. (l-r front) Vic Robson, David Whitaker, Geri Whitaker, "Nugget", Pam Euliss, Donna Presley and Tony Presley. (l-r back) Jim Driggers, Phil Brownrigg, Carole Wintle, Greta Driggers, Jeanne O'Connor, Bruce O'Connor, Pom Sinnock, Don Preece, and Jack Jacobi.

Video and More Photos!

Wayah Bald 5-10-11

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