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Ascent of Cove Mountain-Dragons Tooth on 2011-08-20

Climber: Scott Parkins

Others in Party:Brent
Date:Saturday, August 20, 2011
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Cove Mountain-Dragons Tooth
    Location:USA-Virginia
    Elevation:3050 ft / 929 m

Ascent Trip Report

If you think the Appalachians are nothing more than rolling hills, open balds, and cleanly defined trails, then you have not hiked the Dragon's Tooth. If you love boulder climbing and rock scrambles, the upper mile of the Dragon Tooth trail is probably the greatest hike in Virginia. If you hate it, you'd be better off hiking the next ridge over and doing McAfee Knob.

From the Rte 311 parking lot (just past the intersection of 624) you can take either the Dragon's Tooth trail or the much steeper AT (they both merge for the final mile). The last mile is tricky as it is not well marked and you have to climb some narrow rock ledges, a couple have iron steps to help out. Some nice views of the Catawba valley.

Once at the top ridge, it is a few hundred yards to the Tooth itself, a series of rocky pinnacles. Getting to the top requires some rock climbing with exposure.

Took the AT all the way down, which is much rockier than the Dragon's Tooth trail as it goes over Peak 2623 with some great views of the Route 624 valley and the Tooth.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:1373 ft / 418 m
    Total Elevation Loss:1373 ft / 418 m
    Round-Trip Distance:5 mi / 8 km
    Quality:9 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Scramble, Exposed Scramble
    Weather:Hot, Calm, Clear
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:1250 ft / 381 m
    Distance:2.5 mi / 4 km
    Route:Dragons Tooth Trail/AT
    Start Trailhead:AT Dragon's Tooth Parking Lot  1800 ft / 548 m
    Time:1 Hours 30 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:1373 ft / 418 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 1250 ft / 381 m; Extra: 123 ft / 37m
    Gain on way out:123 ft / 37 m
    Distance:2.5 mi / 4 km
    Route:AT/Boy Scout Trail
    End Trailhead:AT DT Parking Lot  1800 ft / 548 m
    Time:1 Hours 30 Minutes



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