NCBartramTrail.org

Official Website of the North Carolina Bartram Trail Society

Section 1

10.8 miles – Hale Ridge Road to Jones Gap

Overview
Section 1 of the North Carolina Bartram National Recreation Trail offers 10.8 miles of easy to moderately strenuous hiking. Heading north from Georgia, the trail skirts the Chattooga River watershed and Blue Valley, in the Blue Ridge; then it climbs into the Fishhawk Mountains, at Scaly Mountain, crosses the headwaters of Tessentee Creek, and contours around the steep western side of Peggy Knob to Hickory Gap. Going from south to north, section 1 is divided into 5 parts: Hale Ridge Road to Osage Overlook (3.7 miles); Osage Overlook to Scaly Mountain Overlook (2 miles); Scaly Mountain Overlook to Tessentee Creek Camp (2.3 miles) Tessentee Creek to Hickory Gap (1.8 miles) and Hickory Gap to Jones Gap (1mile). Also, a 2-mile stretch from Beegum Gap to Rabun Bald is shown on the map. Section 1 has road accessible trailheads at Beegum Gap. Also, a spur trail leads down from Scaly Mountain to a trailhead at Hickory Knut Road.

Hale Ridge to Rabun Bald and return
NCBT Map Section: 1
Degree of Difficulty: Strenuous
Approximate Time: 5 hours ~ Round Trip Mileage: 8 miles
Features: Vistas atop Rabun Bald, GA BT

Osage Overlook to Hale Ridge and return
NCBT Map Section: 1
Degree of Difficulty: Moderate
Approximate Time: 5 hours ~ Round Trip Mileage: 7.5 miles
Features: Lots of stream crossings in Blue Valley Watershed; open forested areas

Osage Overlook to Scaly Mtn. and return
NCBT Map Section: 1
Difficulty: Strenuous; climbs 1100 feet
Approximate Time: 3 hours ~ Round Trip Mileage: 4 miles
Features: Scaly Mountain views from 4804 feet; small waterfall at .8 mile

Directions to Trailhead

Hale Ridge Road Trailhead:

From Highlands, NC: Drive southwest on NC 106 for 7 miles to Scaly Mt. Turn left on Hale Ridge Road (SR1625), which makes a sharp left at 2.1 miles. In one mile, look for NC Bartram Trail sign and bulletin board on left. Parking on left side of the road; capacity about 3 cars.

From Dillard area: From intersection of US 441 and GA Hwy 246, travel 246 into NC (which becomes NC 106) about 7 miles to Scaly Mtn, NC at Hale Ridge Rd. intersection with NC 106. Turn right on Hale Ridge and drive 2.1 miles. In one mile, look for NC Bartram Trail sign and bulletin board on left. Parking on left side of the road; capacity about 3 cars.

Osage Mountain Overlook Trailhead:

From Highlands, drive 5.7 miles southwest on NC 106. The paved overlook and trailhead will be on the left.

From Dillard area:, drive 8.3 miles northeast on GA 246/NC 106. The overlook and trailhead sign will be on the right at a large paved parking area.

Jones Gap Trailhead:

From Highlands, drive southwest on NC 106 for 4 miles, turning right on Turtle Pond Rd. In 3.3 miles, turn left on to Dendy Orchard Road. Drive 1.3 miles, to top of hill, turn left onto Jones Gap Rd. (FR4522, look for large FS sign reading “BT access”) and drive 2 miles up to Jones Gap Trailhead and parking area.