August 19, 2018
Let me preface this entry by stating that I did not much care for these trails. Firstly, they are not hiking trails, but carriage trails. The Cone Family at one time had their home away from home in the mountains near Blowing Rock, NC. Obviously rich, they carved wide paths to tour their estate. Now under the purview of the National Park Service, the once used paths for the rich are now used with alarmingly frequency by the general public. Starting at the Manor house, I ventured along the following path (attached). The first part of the hike was inundated with joggers, families arguing, runners, et al. Once I descended to Bass Lake, there must have been 60 people walking along the path.
The Maze and Watkin Road on the other hand, were nearly deserted and much prettier. Hemlocks seemingly unaffected by any disease, lush ferns and towering foliage dotted the landscape. I found myself enjoying the mindless path and enjoying an early morning run.
Total mileage is 8 miles.