Cold Mountain in Asheville

North Carolina’s Cold Mountain, 35 miles south of Asheville, is part of the heavily forested and beautiful terrain of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Though there is no actual Cold Mountain town, the summit received notoriety from Charles Frazier’s bestselling novel, Cold Mountain, and the 2003 award-winning film of the same name. Frazier’s novel is a classic love story set against the backdrop of the American Civil. In the book, a deserted Confederate soldier travels across the south to his young wife, whom he left tending the farm.

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The movie was actually filmed in Romania. In addition, both areas share the rich scenery and incredible beauty of the Appalachian landscape. Fans of the novel and book have drawn people to the area, a majestic wilderness setting that remains almost untouched by civilization through the years. This is because Cold Mountain appears today as it would have during the Civil War era.

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Located in the Pisgah National Forest and Shining Rock Wilderness, travelers can see and access the summit of Cold Mountain from the Blue Ridge Parkway at milepost 420, from the Black Balsam Knob Road.

The area, rich in cultural heritage and Appalachian tradition, stems back to the displacement of the local Native Americans, up through the Civil War to how it stands today with a noted isolation.

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Within the Great Balsam Mountains, the Cold Mountain summit rests at an elevation of 6,030 feet. In addition, the trek to the peak is a strenuous 10.6-mile roundtrip hike with steep sections. Most notably the climb up Stair Mountain. Hikers should take between 6-7 hours to complete the journey.

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Even though Cold Mountain is one of the most viewed peaks, it is one of the least visited. This is due to the 10-mile trek and an altitude gain of 3,000 feet. In addition, it is primarily unmarked. Even the easy or moderate trails can become strenuous quickly. Also, be sure to check available information through the local Chambers of Commerce. For information on campsites and maps of the area, visit the Blue Ridge Parkway Visitor Center.


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Written By Erin

Erin Poche` is a Utah-based writer and editor for Tripster and contributing writer for BeyondType1. She also writes and edits for an indie publisher of fanta ...

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