Hawksbill Mountain via Devil's Hole

Page Type
Trip Report
North Carolina, United States, North America
Date Climbed/Hiked:
Jun 4, 2011
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Hawksbill Mountain via Devil's Hole
Created On: Jun 19, 2011
Last Edited On: Jun 26, 2011

Photo Trip Report

I climbed Hawksbill Mountain with my son Andrew and my friend Rob and we used the Devil's Hole Trail for our approach. Using this approach requires a ford of the Linville River.

We were on a two night backpack in Linvlle Gorge. On Friday night we camped on the Linville Gorge Trail (LGT) just south of the Pinchin Trail. On Saturday morning we hiked the LGT and grabbed the first backcountry campsite north of the bridge at Spence Ridge.
Linville Gorge TrailLinville Gorge Trail

Linville Gorge TrailLinville Gorge Trail

Linville RiverLinville River

Falls on the Linville RiverCathedral Falls

Linville RiverLinville River at our campsite

We left our campsite at 3 PM to start what we estimated to be an 8 mile loop. We made it to the ford after about one hour.
Hawksbill MountainHawksbill Mountain from the Linville Gorge Trail

Linville Gorge Trail Sign?Devil's Hole "Trail Sign"

Devil s Hole Trail?The descent to the river from the Linville Gorge Trail

The Ford at Devil s Hole

Ford at Devil s HoleLooking back to where we crossed, just to the right of the cairn.

We ascended Devil's Hole Trail to the junction with the Jonas Ridge Trail and took that to reach the trail to the summit of Hawksbill Mountain.
Devil s Hole TrailDevil's Hole Trail just above the river crossing.

Spring BloomsSpring Blooms

Devil s Hole Trail

Summit Photos
Linville Gorge PanoramaClick to view panorama full screen

The View NorthLooking North

Jonas RidgeJonas Ridge

Cliffs of Hawksbill Mountian

On our descent we attempted taking the Ledge trails to Spence Ridge Trail. This would eliminate the need to hike on the road to reach Spence Ridge. We ended up on the Hawksbill Mountain Climber's Trail and lost the trail where it petered out, so we retreated to the road.
The Cliffs of Hawksbill MountainCliffs below Hawksbill Mountain

Cliffs Below Hawksbill MountainAndrew on the Hawksbill Mountain Climber's Trail

It was getting late by the time we reached the road, and it was doubtful that we were going to make it back to camp before dark. There was a gentleman setting up camp at the nearby campsite and we asked him for a ride to the Spence Ridge Trailhead. He kindly took us, which saved us probably an hour. We descended Spence Ridge Trail, in the dark, back to the LGT and finished the quarter mile hike back to our campsite.

Helpful Hints

Sarcasm intended...

That trail that veers to the right where the Jonas Ridge Trail ends is NOT the Ledge Trail, but the Hawksbill Mountain Climber's Trail. You might want to make a note of that!

It's always a good idea to have your headlamp with you when you go on hikes late in the afternoon, in case things don't go as planned and you end up hiking in the dark. Having that extra light sure makes filtering water on the Spence Ridge Trail a lot easier. Just sayin'!

When you are descending Spence Ridge Trail and you see that sign that says "S Ridge", don't just walk by it. It really is the trail for Spence Ridge. Taking that right hand turn just may save you some time. Not that I have any experience making such a stupid mistake like that!



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