Carolina Rhododendrons Hawksbill Mountain and The Chimneys
The Carolina Rhododendrons bloomed about ten days early on Hawksbill Mountain and the Chimneys, which overlooks the Linville Gorge. A friend told me about them otherwise I would have hiked up there for nothing. Whew!! If you've not seen them before, it's well worth the difficult hike.
While I've been up to Hawksbill Mountain several times, I had my first visit to The Chimneys. This was a really interesting location. From the Hawksbill trailhead, just continue down the road about 7 more miles. It will seem pretty long given you're on a rugged gravel road most of the way. You end up at the trailhead for Table Rock. The trail for the Chimneys is in the opposite direction. To get to the Chimneys area takes about 3/4 mile moderate trail. Be careful here too as there are sheer drops in many locations. The Chimneys are known for their unique rock formations with pillars of rock jutting out into the gorge.
NOTE: Please be aware that the trail up Hawksbill Mountain is less than a mile but is very steep. The top of Hawksbill can be very dangerous as there are sheer drops all over the top. Do not get too close to the edge, especially if the rocks are wet. Keep your gear secured as well.
Keywords: Chimneys, flowers, gorge, gorge", Hawksbill, landscape, linville, nature, nikon, north carolina, reid northrup, rhododendrons, rocks
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