Shining Rock Climber's Log

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technicolorNH - May 13, 2018 7:21 pm Date Climbed: May 11, 2018

This one was an adventure  Sucess!

Parked on the high side parking area of the Big East Fork TH and started up the wrong trail. Fortunately I was able to correct that with some bushwhacking to get to Shining Creek Gap but I had to go over a 3800 foot mountain to do it, which led to the ascent being an over four hour affair. I did find the actual summit but wasn't sure about which path was the trail down Chestnut Ridge so I went back down the way I came, along the North Prong of the Shining Creek. Descent only took two hours and the trails were quite good except at the very top.


mchisholm - Jun 16, 2015 1:01 pm Date Climbed: Jun 4, 2015

Up to Shining Rock from Old Butt  Sucess!

We came up from the Big East Fork trailhead up and over Old Butt, Dog Loser Knob and Beech Spring Gap. There was a TON of bear scat on Chestnut Ridge, and we were hiking w/ two dogs, so we didn't see anything, but we heard a lot of rumors about bears being everywhere. The summit to Shining Rock we thought we hit, but it was so overgrown and hard to see my GPS only said we topped out at 5,965, but I couldn't see a higher pont. Most of the actual quartz outcroppings, the "shining rocks" are well below the actual summit, but could otherwise count as summits since there seems to be no clear summit to get to. This is an amazing hike, however, and well worth the trip. We descended down through the North Prong of Shining Creek which was a gorgeous drainage. Link to hike:


eric-griz - May 24, 2014 6:10 pm Date Climbed: May 24, 2014

Art Loeb from south  Sucess!

There really is a maze of trails in the Shining Rock Gap area. Luckily I guessed right and found myself on the snow white quartz. This is a really neat peak.

Joel Hopper

Joel Hopper - Jun 16, 2013 8:27 pm Date Climbed: Jun 15, 2013

5 pack  Sucess!

Via Art Loeb Trail nice outing included in a grab of Black Balsam, Tennent Mountain, Grassy Cove Top, Shining Rock & Sam Knob. The quartz looks like glacial ice. Lack of summit marker makes it fun to find the actual summit.


evanrothe - Nov 15, 2011 8:33 pm Date Climbed: Nov 12, 2011

The Rock  Sucess!

Awesome any time of year!


Koonsy - May 16, 2010 11:58 am

Art Loeb  Sucess!

Hiked this on the way out to Cold Mountain, good views.


sprosseda - Oct 7, 2009 12:40 pm Date Climbed: Nov 1, 1997

Summit rocks are amazing  Sucess!

This is a beautiful little summit on top of the Shining rock highland. I love the Spruce-Fir forest with the brilliant quartz boulders. You can actually boulder on a few of the rocks. Amazing area

Mike N

Mike N - May 30, 2009 9:01 pm Date Climbed: May 30, 2009

Shining Creek  Sucess!

Easy to get to trailhead. Unfortunately that was all that was easy. Started at 4am and that was a mistake. Took false trails 3 times in the dark. Most were near the stream crossings. Trails are not marked and had to really trust altimeter and map. Figured in the East if you are bushwhacking, you are off-trail. Even with daylight, coming down Chestnut Ridge I took a couple false trails. Finally did see a few trees with bark cut out as a blaze, but hard to see these, especially with a headlight in the dark. Temps were low 40s end of May. Coming down Chestnut ridge about half way down from Old Butt Knob, there is a nice lookout rock outcrop just off the trail to the right looking into Shining creek (maybe near 4200ft). At the top of Shining rock, trails were also not marked and there are numerous side and false trails. Mostly I just found the top by trial and error. Loop took me over 4.5 hrs from Big East Fork. At least 45 minutes were spent lost.


tioga - May 12, 2009 11:59 am Date Climbed: May 9, 2009

White Rock  Sucess!

After descending Cold Mountain to Deep Gap, I continued up over The Narrows, Stairs Mountain, and then to Shining Rock. I stood on both rock outcrops, which look equally as high, although one had a cairn on top. I loved the white color of the rock in this area.


LilBird - May 10, 2008 10:07 pm Date Climbed: Apr 19, 2008

Great temperature  Sucess!

I went there with my husband and I'm glad I did. I've NEVER seen a piece of quartz that big. I think I've found another favorite.


captainbuuda - Apr 20, 2008 12:43 am Date Climbed: Apr 19, 2008

Fun on (shining) rocks  Sucess!

Woke up to rain in Shining Rock Gap; waited till noon and the sun finally came out and gave us a great look at a very beautiful place. I feel fortunate that we had the mountain to ourselves for the brief time we were there.


StarMan - Aug 9, 2007 7:50 pm

Good one

Hiked this one many times from all directions in all seasons!

Sarah Simon

Sarah Simon - May 23, 2007 1:45 pm

Re: Old Butt Knob/Shining Creek

We bushwacked a-plenty with a Shining Rock veteran. GPS? in 1997. We were still into "USGS Quads" back then. ;) Cheers!

Sarah Simon

Sarah Simon - Apr 20, 2007 1:33 pm Date Climbed: Oct 25, 1997

Special, special mountain  Sucess!

Very special mountain. Lovely place. Too much rain that weekend, though.


gwave47 - Nov 10, 2006 11:29 pm

Re: Old Butt Knob/Shining Creek

You may have been at the wrong summit. Most people mistake the summit on this mountain and never make it to the true summit. If you didn't bushwack for at least 7 - 10 minutes and swear you were lost 5 or 10 times, then you were at the wrong summit. Granted the quartz is just as plentiful in both locations, not being at the summit is probably why your GPS gave a different elevation.


gwave47 - Nov 10, 2006 11:25 pm Date Climbed: Nov 10, 2006

Also hiked Black Balsam Knob, Tennant Mountain, and Grassy Cove Top  Sucess!

Actually the pictures on this page that are described as the summit, is not the summit. There are bigger quartz rocks at the very top of the mountain. The trails to them are very overgrown. Many people get confused as to where the location of the summit is.

Dottie Little Tent

Dottie Little Tent - Sep 14, 2006 6:37 pm

old butt knob

Awesome area except it is TOO crowded esp. in summer. Try old butt knob trail for a nice workout and different route than the traffic jam from graveyard or balsam.


GAHikerGirl - Jun 15, 2006 1:18 am Date Climbed: Jun 4, 2006

A Bit of A Trick to Find the Summit....  Sucess!

Difficult to find, but if you're there on the weekend, just follow the crowd. Beautiful quartz outcrops. Shining Rock Gap has nice camp spots and water just to the south of the gap. The Art Loeb Trail north of the gap can be confusing to find. Remember: Take the farthest trail left from the gap going north.


Cortez - Apr 16, 2006 6:56 pm Date Climbed: Apr 15, 2006

Shining Rock via Black Balsam Knob/Art Loeb Trails  Sucess!

We hiked Shining rock on a warm & windy Easter Eve. The trail was relatively good, however, once you enter the Shining Rock wilderness the myriad hiker trails can be confusing especially since the main trails are poorly marked (if at all). The views from the summit are stunning & the quartz outcroppings provide a nice place to relax before pushing on. From this outcropping one has a stunning view of Cold Mountain & the East Fork. The quartz formation located toward the center of the summit seems to be the highest point on the mountain. It is hard to tell because there is no summit marker. The hike from the Black Balsam Knob trailhead is realtively easy and the hike along the ridge provides some of the most incredable scenery on the east coast.


brentonjweaver - Apr 12, 2006 8:07 am Date Climbed: Aug 1, 2002

Art Loeb  Sucess!

Incredible Scenery, and great weather.

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