A run on the Mountains to Sea trail (#440) is quite a workout. An amazing amount of rock work has been done to this trail, which runs along the Blue Ridge Parkway, and eventually makes its way to Boone. When completed the MST trail will run from the Blue Ridge Mountains, all the way to the Outer Banks on the coast of North Carolina. A little out and back on it will do for now though. This trail is great to run the dogs, as it crosses several creeks. You won't have to get your feet wet though, this is one of the rockiest trails as it makes it way up to the Pisgah Inn.
What Makes It Great
This out and back will have you on narrow, rocky bench cut trail the entire time. There are several off shoot trails from here, stay on the main trail. After a few minutes, you will come to intersection of the MST (#440), make a right here and head up to the Pisgah Inn. Don't forget where you made this right turn, when you come back down you'll make the left onto Buck Springs (#104) to get back to the car.
Who is Going to Love It
This is a great place to put in just a couple miles or lots of miles - the trail is about 40 miles long. The views at the top are incredible, facing east this trail is best done early in the morning. It's also a place for a quiet run - you aren't likely to see many people here.
Directions, Parking, & Regulations
From town, drive to the main entrance of Pisgah National Forest. Turn left and head towards the Blue Ridge Parkway. You will see a sign for Pink Beds on your right in about 20 minutes, soon after the Pink Beds the road starts to make a steeper ascent to the Parkway, and you will be on the look out for the Buck Springs trailhead (#104). On your Pisgah National Geographic map, this parking area is labeled with a large "P," and is in a switchback turning left. Park here, the trailhead sign is right here.