SUBSCRIBE | NEWSLETTERS | MAPS | VIDEOS | BLOGS | MARKETPLACE | CONTESTS
TRY BACKPACKER FREE!
SUBSCRIBE NOW and get
2 Free Issues and 3 Free Gifts!
Full Name:
Address 1:
Address 2:
City:
State:
Zip Code:
Email: (required)
If I like it and decide to continue, I'll pay just $12.00, and receive a full one-year subscription (9 issues in all), a 73% savings off the newsstand price! If for any reason I decide not to continue, I'll write "cancel" on the invoice and owe nothing.
Your subscription includes 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Or click here to pay now and get 2 extra issues
Offer valid in US only.
CLICK HERE TO LAUNCH FULL SCREEN MAP

Asheville, NC: Creekside Loop

nc

Star Star Star Star Star

Distance: 10.4 miles


Looking for a mellow weekend with swimming options? Hit up this gentle, 10.4-mile loop in the Mills River area of Pisgah National Forest.
  • Swing Bridge
  • Wooded Trail
  • Bradley Creek Trail
  • Butterflies
  • Campsite

I thought my backpacking days were on hold. I was five months pregnant, and taking care of my midsection was hard enough without puffing up a Therm-a-Rest or sweating up a steep trail. But when an opportunity arose that was too good to pass up (being a BACKPACKER Reader Leader! Hello!), I threw my reservations aside and said to my husband, “Heck—let’s do it!”

We picked the gentle 10.4-mile Creekside Loop in the Mills River area of Pisgah National Forest. It has minimal climbing, many opportunities to dabble toes in the water, and enough camping options that we could tweak our itinerary if we needed to.

From the Turkeypen trailhead north of Brevard, take the Mullinax Trail through hemlock and rhododendron over 3,000-foot Mullinax Gap to the Laurel Creek Trail. This tracks the creek for 1.6 miles to the Bradley Creek Trail junction, a good place to camp if you don’t want to push it. Take Bradley Creek to a left on the Riverside Trail. There are a half-dozen easy creek crossings in this stretch (nice for my swollen ankles). We camped riverside at mile 8.6, in a hemlock-shaded spot with a fire ring.

The next day is an easy 2.4 miles to the trailhead, where we high-fived for getting in one more trip before becoming new parents (to a girl!).

Map Pisgah Ranger District ($12, natgeomaps.com)

Contact (828) 257-4200; fs.usda.gov/nfsnc

-Text and mapping by Emily Marten

Post a comment

ADD A COMMENT

Your rating:
Your Name:

Comment:




Go
View all Gear
Find a retailer
Get 2 FREE Trial Issues and 3 FREE GIFTS
Survival Skills 101 • Eat Better
The Best Trails in America
YES! Please send me my FREE trial issues of Backpacker
and my 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Full Name:
City:
Address 1:
Zip Code:
State:
Address 2:
Email (required):
Free trial offer valid for US subscribers only. Canadian subscriptions | International subscriptions