Pilot Cove - Slate Rock Trail

At A Glance


4.3 mi one-way

Difficulty Rating: 8.14
Steepness: Hilly
Tread Condition: Moderately Rough
Lowest Elevation: 2800 ft
Highest Elevation: 3830 ft
Climb Total: 1735 ft
Blaze Color: Blue
Trail Number: 320


Fun creekside trail, rocky and rooty sections. There are several stream crossings and some small waterfalls on the creek. Steep sections as it goes over the gap on Slate Rock Ridge. Watch out or you will end up on the Laurel Mountain trail at Sassafras Gap (there is a confusing, unmapped connector between these two trails!). On the Pilot Cove side, the trail is a little flatter and also passes through some neat fern-filled woods. Connects to the Pilot Cove Loop Trail (#320A) which takes you to the top of Slate Rock for an alternative, ridge-top route around the cove, or can be combined with that trail for a shorter loop on its own on the west side. This trail is frequently combined with Laurel Mountain and the Pilot Rock trail as an "inner loop" alternative to using Yellow Gap Road (FS 1206) to connect the trailheads.

Intersecting Trails

  • Pilot Cove Loop
  • This trail is located in the Mills River area. For a list of all the trails in that area, see the Mills River trails list page.

    GPS Map

    Map Information

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    Data Formats

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    About the Map


    Base Layers

    Base layers provided by OpenStreetMap, the US Geological Survey, the US Forest Service, and NC OneMap. Base layer images are subject to the respective copyright policies of their owners. Base layers may not be available at all times due to system maintenance or outages.

    WNCOutdoors Base Layer

    The WNCOutdoors Base layer is provided by WNCOutdoors.info. It is licensed by Creative Commons Attribution 3.0.

    Trail and Marker Overlays

    Trail layers and downloadable data are all original works created by WNCOutdoors with guidance from a variety of sources, including ensembles of our own GPS tracks, user contributed GPS tracks, official maps and GIS data from government agencies, and field observations. WNCOutdoors data is made freely available under the Open Database License - you are free to copy and use it for any purpose under the terms of that license (summary).


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    Trail Segments

    Trails are often made up of several connecting paths which may have different characteristics, allowed uses, and seasons. This trail is divided into multiple segments as follows:

    Pilot Cove - Slate Rock - Pilot Cove Parking to Loop

    • Allowed Uses: Hiking, Mountain Biking
    • Length: 0.12 mi

    Pilot Cove - Slate Rock - Pilot Cove Loop to Pilot Rock Connector

    • Allowed Uses: Hiking, Mountain Biking
    • Length: 0.94 mi

    Pilot Cove - Slate Rock - Slate Rock Cove Section

    • Allowed Uses: Hiking, Mountain Biking
    • Length: 2.93 mi

    Pilot Cove - Slate Rock - Pilot Rock Connector to Pilot Cove Loop

    • Allowed Uses: Hiking, Mountain Biking
    • Length: 0.36 mi

    Total Calculated Length: 4.34 mi

    This value is derived from our underlying map data, and it may not match officially published information.



    Average Rating: 3.6 (rated 28 times)

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    iHikeiBike said: ROOTS!

    Saturday, July 20 2013 8:35pm
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