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Siler Bald & Wayah Bald on the AT

The Basics:
Event Type:Hike
Event Location: west of Franklin, NC   Hike: Siler Bald & Wayah Bald on the AT  National Weather Service Forecast
Date(s) & Time:Sun, Dec 14 2014  7:30 am >> Sun, Dec 14 2014 8:00 pm  (Carpool Departure: 7:30 am   *log in for location*)
Registration Opens: Mon, Dec 8 2014 9:00 pm
Registration Cut Off: Sat, Dec 13 2014 7:00 pm
Event Duration:per itinerary
Difficulty Rating:D5: Difficult
Distance:12 Miles
Trip Leader(s):
Todd M
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Member Cost:None

Participant Info:
Who's Invited: Members Only, 21 And Older Only
Maximum Group Size:8
Minimum Group Size:2
Number Registered So Far: 11 / 0 (To see who's signed up, log in to the Member Area)
Are Dogs Permitted: No


Here we have two magnificent views on a figure-8 hike. The center of the figure 8 is the parking lot at Wayah Gap (~4200 ft). To make the first loop we ascend Siler Bald (5216 ft), where we will enjoy a 360-degree view on a wide-open grassy crown, after which we return to Wayah Gap (4 miles, 2 hours). For the second loop we cross the road and ascend Winespring Mountain and continue along the ridge to Wayah Bald (5350 ft), where we enjoy another almost 360-degree view from the recently restored fire tower, before returning to Wayah Gap (8 miles, 4 hours). Total elevation gain about 3000 ft.

Two details of the hike: we will remain on the top of Siler Bald for 30 minutes to take in the awesome view or to take photos or eat or bliss out. Then on the return stretch from Wayah Bald, we will avoid the tricky section of the AT from Wayah to Winespring Mtn by taking the gravel road parallel to it. The road is closed at this time of year, so there will be no vehicles, and taking it will save us about 1/2 hour. 

We can have dinner in Clayton after the hike for those who would like to. You will have to work it out in the morning when you form your carpools.

Todd is going to coordinate the carpool at the Indian Trail park-and-ride. I, and anyone wishing to "meet at event," will join the group at the Clayton Ingles (south-west corner of parking lot) at 8:45.

This hike depends on it being a warm, sunny day, and it looks like we have it!

Required Items to Bring:

broken-in hiking boots

plastic bag in which to place your boots if you are driving in someone else's car

2 or 3 bottles of water, lunch

Recommended Items to Bring:
Use our Event Checklists to make sure you have everything you need.

hiking poles, sun screen, clean T-shirt to wear to dinner

How to Get There:
Event Directions:

From the Indian Trail park & ride, take I-85 North. After 11 miles bear left to take I-985 North. This road will change to GA 365, US 441, and US 23. Stay on it for 75 miles, then stop at the Clayton Ingles for a pit-stop and to pik up the leader. Once back on the 441, it is 21 miles to Franklin. Make a left onto US 64 West. Go 3.7 miles on US 64 and make a right onto Old Murphy Road, then an immediate left onto Wayah Rd, SR 1310, which is all paved (Look for a sign for Wayah Bald on US 64). From there it is 8.9 miles to the Appalachian Trail. After you pass the hikers-crossing sign at the top of Wayah Gap, turn left into the parking lot of the Wayah Crest campground.
Travel time: 1.5 hours from Indian Trail park-and-ride to Clayton and another 45 minutes from Clayton to Wayah Gap.

Carpool to Event Distance (round trip):242Mile(s)
Carpool Departure Time: 7:30 am
Carpool Location:   Log in for location
Carpool Directions:   Log in for directions
Carpool Cost: Estimated cost per vehicle for this event is $96.80 using a reimbursement rate guideline of $0.400 per mile. The total amount should be divided by the number of people in the vehicle, including the driver. This is a guideline, not a rule, for drivers but the cost should not be higher unless there are extenuating circumstances.


I will be contacting anyone who has not recently completed a D5 hike to ascertain whether this is a good hike for you.

* We encourage all members to follow our Etiquette Guidelines while participating in AOC events.

Cancellation/Partial Attendance:   Please review the AOC cancellation policy.