Big Butt Trail – in Pisgah

Big Butt Trail - Point Misery

How much effort would you expand to see a view like the one above? Here I’m at Point Misery, looking at the Mt. Mitchell range, also known as the Death March when you’re walking it. 

Big Butt Trail - Starting outThe Big Butt Trail goes from NC 197 outside of Barnardsville to the Blue Ridge Parkway MP 359.8.

Carroll, Bruce and I started on the trail at Cane River Gap on NC 197. The trail has been completely redone. The Forest Service has switched back the trail beautifully. They also put in steps, lots and lots of steps.

We had a hard time finding Point Misery. First we walked to Big Butt, a bump with no views. Then we blew past Point Misery to Little Butt. On the way out, we climbed 308 steps – yes Bruce counted them.

Big Butt Trail - mushroomsPoint Misery Overlook was a short way off the left.

On the way back, we found it and enjoyed the view. There’s a similar view on the Barnardsville side. A couple of outlandish mushrooms, tons and tones of jewel weed and Bowmans Root and that’s it.

So how far did we walk? Carroll’s GPS said 9.2 miles round trip. But from Point Misery it was only 3.5 miles back, so it’s 7 miles round trip, 2000 feet of ascent.

The Forest Service website calls this Trail #161 and says that the whole trail, one way, is six miles. Confusing!

I’m leading this hike on Sunday September 2 for Carolina Mountain Club. Come and see the view for yourself.

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