Cat Gap Trail, Butter Gap Trail,
Cedar Rock Trail, Art Loeb Trail, and Horse Cove Trail

Picture of view from top of Cedar Rock Mountain

Warning:   This data is out-of-date. Trails, roads, and landmarks change.
You should obtain current information before attempting any hike.

Date Hiked: 3/10/90

Length: 8.0 miles

Type: loop

Difficulty: 4

Scenery: 3

Blaze: orange on Cat Gap Trail, blue on Butter Gap trail, infrequent metal triangles on Cedar Rock Trail, white on Art Loeb Trail, orange on Horse Cove Trail

Main Features: views, waterfalls

Animals: turkey vulture, pileated woodpecker, skunk , big centipede

Location: Pisgah National Forest, North Carolina

Turn off of highway 64 onto 276 into the Pisgah Forest from Brevard. Drive 5.4 miles and turn left on road 475. Drive 1.5 miles and turn left on 475C into the fish hatchery parking lot. Exit the parking lot on the road directly opposite the parking lot's entrance. Turn right onto the Cat Gap Trail a few feet past the gate and the bridge.

Approximate Altitude Change
Ascend 1,700 feet from fish hatchery to top of Cedar Rock Mountain

0.0 parking lot
0.2 small stream
0.3 bridge, then cross gravel road
0.6 turn left at junction with wider trail
0.8 small cascades on left
turn right on Butter Gap Trail off of Cat Gap Trail (blue blazes begin)
1.1 small stream
1.2 turn left at junction
1.3 bear left staying on Butter Gap Trail (Long Branch Trail goes right)
1.5 small spring on right
1.7 waterfall on left (about 20 feet high)
2.4 bridge
2.5 bridge
2.7 rock-hopping stream crossing
rock-hopping stream crossing
2.9 small waterfall on left (about 4 feet high)
3.0 step across stream
step across stream
3.2 take first left at Butter Gap onto spur trail up Cedar Rock Mountain
(There are seven ways to go at Butter Gap. Go northeast.)
3.4 bear right at fork
several dangerous climbs
4.5 campsite on top of Cedar Rock Mountain
short trails lead to beautiful views
the trail down goes east from the campsite
5.2 turn left on Art Loeb Trail (white blazes)
good log for sitting on right
follow ridge with winter views right and left
5.5 tree on right with yellow silhouette of man hiking (about 1 foot tall)
views of Looking Glass rock to the north
5.9 take second left at Cat Gap onto Horse Cove Trail and descend
(orange blaze begins, white blaze ends)
6.1 good views right and left
6.2 turn right at intersection following orange blazes
(left is shortcut to other side of Cat Gap loop, straight is 0.6
mile dead end trail to outstanding view from John Rock)
6.9 bridge
7.1 cross gravel road
rock-hopping stream crossing, then bridge
7.5 several faint trails go right
7.6 sharp left turn
7.8 rock-hopping stream crossing, then bridge
7.9 turn left at trail junction
8.0 parking lot


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