The museum will host a difficult/strenuous winter hike down this historic path, which was used by wagons and stagecoaches bringing travelers up the mountain before the railroad was built. Though passenger train service ceased in the mid-1900s, the trains still run up and down the mountain several times a day transporting coal east and wood chips west. Hikers often view trains on the nearby tracks, and during the hike there is a good view of the eastern end of the Swannanoa Tunnel, the longest of the seven tunnels constructed up the Old Fort railroad grade. Along the way, hikers will also see the gravestones of two Civil War soldiers.
Difficulty: Difficult/Strenuous, 4-miles; the difficulty of this hike has been upgraded to strenuous due to the numerous creek crossings, climbing over/under fallen trees, and a climb up a steep bank. Boots are a must and hiking poles are very helpful.
Cost: $50 members/$65 nonmembers. Some fees apply.
Updated Coronavirus Protocol:
- Please bring a mask to the event to use in the event of carpooling.
- No one who is sick, running a fever or potentially exposed to COVID should attend.
- Social distancing while on the trails is recommended.