Rugged hike to Calloway Peak, high point of Grandfather Mountain State Park.I went up the Nuwati Trail to the Cragway Trail and got on the Daniel Boone Boy Scout Trail at the Flat Rock Trail junction. Trip write-up at Two Heel Drive.
Weather is the main concern on Grandfather Mountain: Thunderstorms are common on summer afternoons, and the peak is fogged in many days of the year. While fog ruins the scenic vistas of the nearby mountains, it also makes for cool hiking.It's only just over 3.5 miles to the summit from the Boone Fork Parking area (Mile 299.5 on the Blue Ridge Parkway) with right at 2,000 feet of elevation gain. Don't expect to make good time -- the rugged trail and numerous photo ops are apt to slow you dowon.Also: Altitude is a concern for flatlanders. It's not so bad at the trailhead, just under 4000 feet, but near the summit, which is just under 6000, you'll notice the difference in your heart rate and exertion.Three ladders must be climbed to reach the Calloway Peak summit. Hiking poles are handy on this hike, but they do get in the way on some of the areas that require a bit of scrambling.