Bearwallow Mountain – Course of the Bearwallow Beast 5k

View from the top of Bearwallow Mountain - Finish of the Bearwallow Beast 5k

The Bearwallow Beast 5k + Honey & Hops Festival is May 6th and after doing some reading about Bearwallow Mountain I decided to check it out. Nancy and I jumped in our truck with our dogs (Sasha and Gidget) and drove to Gerton, NC (74a between Fairview and Chimney Rock).

Bearwallow Mountain Road intersects with 74a in Gerton and is the start of the Bearwallow Beast 5k. It’s an asphalt road that quickly turns to gravel while winding up the mountain for two miles. Just about exactly two miles from 74a there’s a place to pull off the road and walk through a metal gate to access the single-track Bearwallow Mountain trail that zig-zags to the summit of the mountain. The top is a wide open grassy field with fabulous long-range views and plenty of wind.

The two miles of asphalt and gravel road combined with the single track trail (the sign says it’s .9 miles) and a little more on the summit make up the 5k distance.  A great place for the Honey & Hops Festival.


Take I-240 east for about 3 1/2 miles and continue straight onto US Hwy. 74-A east. Follow 74-A east for about 12 1/2 miles (up a very long set of switchback curves) to the town of Gerton. Turn right on Bearwallow Mountain Road. The road becomes gravel, and gets steep and kind of bumpy, but passenger cars shouldn’t have trouble making it except maybe in very severe weather conditions. Go about 2.1 miles to the parking area on the left at the rusted gate (where the road turns back to pavement).


From the Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy.

From Hike WNC.


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