North Carolina’s Mountain Treasures
Help Protect the Vulnerable Wildlands of the Nantahala and Pisgah National Forests

Laurel Mountain Area

Laurel Mountain Area

Approximate size: 13,368 acres

Roadless acreage: 5,683 acres

Old growth acreage: 245 acres

Location: Henderson and Transylvania counties, NC, 20 miles southwest of Asheville; Pisgah Ranger District, Pisgah National Forest

USGS Topographic Maps: Dunsmore Mountain

The Laurel Mountains Roadless Area shares much with the South Mills Mountain Treasure to its south, from which it is separated only by the dirt Yellow Gap Road as noted above. Extensive trail systems, including part of the Mountains-to- Sea Trail serve both areas and are popular with hikers, campers, mountain bikers, horse riders, and hunters. Both areas were part of the Biltmore Forest.

Upper Whitewater Falls on the Blue Ridge Escarpment. Photo by Lamar Marshall.

The natural features, as well as the historical and recreation values of both Mountain Treasures are very similar–not surprisingly, as they are virtually contiguous wild areas and should be considered as such.

Two of the outstanding features of the Laurel Mountain area are the granite domes on the Pilot Cove and Pilot Rock trails. These natural communities are incredibly scenic and biologically unique to the southern Blue Ridge Mountains.

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