NCBartramTrail.org

Official Website of the North Carolina Bartram Trail Society

Section 2

8.8 miles – Jones Gap to Buckeye Creek

Overview
Section 2 of the North Carolina National Bartram Trail, from Jones Gap to Buckeye Creek, is 8.8 miles long, and it follows the main ridge of the Fishhawk Mountains, with three spur trails leading to mountaintop vistas. This is one of the most beautiful sections of the Bartram Trail. The three highest peaks are Jones Knob, 4622; Whiterock Mountain, 4480, and Big Fishhawk Mountain, 4748 feet. Big Fishhawk Mountain is accessed by a primitive steep trail with a plaque dedicated to William Bartram at the top, but no view. White Rock and Jones Gap have sheer rock sides to the south and west. White rock has a year round vista. The views from Jones Knob are best when trees are leafless. Section 2 has road accessible trailheads at Jones Gap and at Buckeye Creek.

Jones Gap to Whiterock Mountain. and return
NCBT Map Section: 2
Degree of Difficulty: Easy
Approximate Time: 4 hours ~ Round Trip Mileage: 4.5 miles
Features: Stunning views; spring wildflowers galore and old-growth forest

Directions to Trailhead

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.

From Franklin: From the US441/US64 junction south of Franklin, take US 64/28 towards Highlands and drive 9.5 miles to Gold Mine Rd. on right. Travel 0.8 miles on Gold Mine Road to a church and Dendy Orchard Road take a left at the church, and drive 2.6 miles to the top of the hill. Turn right on Jones Gap Rd (FR4522). Look for the Forest Service BT access sign and follow Jones Gap Rd. for 2 miles up to the trailhead.

Buckeye Creek Trailhead:

From Franklin: From the US441/US64 junction south of Franklin, drive south on US 441 for 7 miles to Otto and turn left onto Tessentee Rd. Drive 3.8 miles to SR 1640, on left. Take SR 1640 for 0.6 miles, passing houses. Continue into the forest on gravel road for 0.1 mile to the trailhead parking area, on right (private property on left). From there, the Bartram Trail follows the logging road up past the Forest Service gate. Gravel parking lot on the right.

From Dillard area: Drive north of GA line on GA246/US441 for 5.2 miles and turn right onto Tessentee Road. Drive 3.8 miles to SR 1640, on left. Take SR 1640 for 0.6 miles, passing houses. Continue into the forest on gravel road for 0.1 mile to the trailhead parking area, on right (private property on left). From there, the Bartram Trail follows the logging road up past the Forest Service gate. Gravel parking lot on the right