Ascent of Big Bald on 2012-10-13

Climber: Tom Layton

Date:Saturday, October 13, 2012
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Big Bald
    Location:USA-North Carolina
    Elevation:5280 ft / 1609 m

Ascent Trip Report

There are at least three Big Balds in NC--all of them at least a mile high. This one is along the Blue Ridge Parkway just south of the Pisgah Inn. The MST (Mountain-to-Sea Trail) crosses the summit, so the peak is equally accessible from the Mount Pisgah campground or Fryingpan Gap. I parked at the latter, which is also the access point for Fryingpan Mountain. Hike northeast for 0.4 miles, climbing 320 feet to reach the 5280 contour on the summit. The highest point is in a briarpatch a few yards south of the trail. No views here. If you are looking for vistas, go next door to the Fryingpan Tower--or just stay on the Parkway.

This was my 46th peak on the list of 184 NC peaks over 5000 feet, so I am a quarter of the way there. Earlier the same day, I climbed Mount Hardy, putting me at the halfway point on the South Beyond 6000 list.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:320 ft / 97 m
    Total Elevation Loss:320 ft / 97 m
    Round-Trip Distance:0.8 mi / 1.3 km
    Quality:3 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:320 ft / 97 m
    Distance:0.4 mi / 0.6 km
    Route:MST eastbound
    Start Trailhead:Fryingpan Gap  4960 ft / 1511 m
    Time:10 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:320 ft / 97 m
    Distance:0.4 mi / 0.6 km
    End Trailhead:Fryingpan Gap  4960 ft / 1511 m
    Time:10 Minutes

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