Ascent of Stone Mountain on 2013-11-25

Climber: William Musser

Others in Party:Willie-Weimaraner Musser
Karen Musser
Daniel Musser
----Only Party on Mountain
Date:Monday, November 25, 2013
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Stone Mountain
    Location:USA-North Carolina
    Elevation:2305 ft / 702 m

Ascent Trip Report

Last half of our loop trail hike which included: Stone Mountain falls, middle falls, lower falls, the homestead, (me running up Wolf Rock by way of Cedar Rock) and finally back and around and up to the summit of Stone Mountain for the second time on this trip. This time I had Karen with Daniel and Willie. It had been a cold 3 days of hiking and the wind chill with the below freezing was getting old and we did not linger on the top too long this time. The decent down and back to the upper parking lot is a total contrast to the ascent trail along the falls and creeks which are lined in Rhododendron thickets. This mostly deciduous hardwood and grassy sloped area covering the batholiths was particularly appealing to us coming back. The amount of exposed magma chamber granite is amazing on this 4.5 mile loop. We ended up hiking over 6 miles with all the side trips to the falls and Wolf Rock (see other trip reports for constrasting directions). The slope up from the lower parking area is much steeper and higher than the trip up from the upper parking side.

If one has the time to expore it all, I would recommend hiking Stone Mountain from the lower parking lot first, then looping up to the upper parking area and down to the falls, seeing the homestead and then exiting from the lower parking area. Otherwise, you have a lot of stairs to climb at the end and I preferred the views in that direction.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:865 ft / 263 m
    Total Elevation Loss:545 ft / 166 m
    Round-Trip Distance:2.4 mi / 3.9 km
    Grade/Class:1 and 1+
    Quality:6 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Bushwhack
    Weather:Cold, Windy, Clear
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:765 ft / 233 m
    Distance:0.7 mi / 1.1 km
    Route:Stone Mtn. Loop
    Start Trailhead:intersection of trails near lower parking  1540 ft / 469 m
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:545 ft / 166 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 445 ft / 136 m; Extra: 100 ft / 30m
    Gain on way out:100 ft / 30 m
    Distance:1.7 mi / 2.7 km
    End Trailhead:Upper Parking SMSP  1860 ft / 566 m
Ascent Part of Trip: Wolf-Stone Mtn

Complete Trip Sequence:
1Wolf Rock2013-11-25 b481 ft / 147 m
2Stone Mountain2013-11-25 c865 ft / 264 m
Total Trip Gain: 1346 ft / 411 m    Total Trip Loss: 1346 ft / 410 m

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