Section 24 - Wayah Gap to Wallace Gap Displayed from North to South

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  Nantahala Hiking Club info @ Wesser, N.C., at U.S. 19 to Bly Gap, N.C.

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Hiker Rated
Parking Safety
Directions Comments Number of Vehicles  Map   &  
Wayah Gap/Picnic Area - NC 1310
   Poor           Great

GPS: 35.153231, -83.580909

Wayah Road (state road 1310) is a very long winding paved road. It can be accessed from US 19/74 or US 64. The dirt road entrance to Wayah Gap/Crest Picnic Area parking is NOT marked and easy to miss ). Driving East it is a right hand turn (right BEFORE FS 69 to Wayah Bald) / Driving West it is a left hand turn (right AFTER FS 69 to Wayah Bald). There was an "adopt a highway" sign just before the turn in each direction. After you turn on the dirt road, stay left at the fork. 50-100 yards further you come to a circle. There is a park service sign (not visible from SR 1310) that reads Wayah Crest Trailhead. Park alongside the circle. Another parking option is to stay right of the fork after the turn. The path is more rutted and you will end in a grassy area that has a few pulloff parking spots. If you use this option, do not block the fire road or the gate.
While there are a few places to pull off park at the road crossing (NC 1310) of the AT at Wayah Gap, highly recommend you park at the below described picnic area in the same vicinity.

NO CELL SERVICE! From Jan 1 to April 1, the FSR 69 up to Wayah Bald is closed. The parking at the picnic area is open year round. HIGHLY RECOMMEND you research this location and view from satellite and ground level photos provided in the picture section of this webpage to have a better feel for what you are looking for. Note that this area is known as both Wayah Gap Picnic Area and Wayah Crest Trailhead. Take the stairs up to the picnic area and stay straight past the picnic tables. You will shortly arrive at the AT (this is NOT blue blazed). If you are headed North on the trail (to Section 23, turn left -- if South (to Section 24), turn right. 04/12/23


WardandDA @
Winding Stair Gap US 64
   Poor           Great

This is where the AT crosses US64 at the top of the big hill coming out of Franklin (9.8 miles from overpass) just past large rock cut. It is an easy place to access the Trail, with parking lot, etc. It is NOT a good place to leave a vehicle overnight! There has been vandalism to cars left here overnight. 2/4/06


Nantahala Hiking Club
Coming from the south, the parking area is 2.4 miles north of Rainbow Springs The parking area is on the east side of the road (are attached map). GPS coordinates are from The GPS coordinates for the parking area are 35.1198, -83.5483 According to the AT Guide to NC/ GA the northbound trail comes in from the east, descending a set of steps at the south edge of the parking area (red marker on the attached map). There is supposed to be a piped spring. at this point. The trail turns right along the highway (US 64) for 500 feet then turns left (west) and re-enters the woods. The other marker indicate this point. The AT overlay seen n the map is apparently somewhat off in this area. . 6/25/14 15-20


at @
April 2023 update: Paved the entire way along US 64. All information referenced remains current. (DA Thomas editor) Many Franklin, NC residents are happy to give hikers a ride into town from the Winding Stair Gap parking lot. 10/15/14


susancarter18 @
Wallace Gap - Old US 64
   Poor           Great

From Franklin,follow US 64 wet 11.4 miles (from overpass where US 23 goes south to Atlanta) to left turn at sign saying 'Appalachian Trail' and 'Standing Indian Campground'. Follow this road (Old Route 64) 1.9 miles to the intersection with paved FS 67. There is a sign for Standing Indian Campground here. This is Wallace Gap. The actual trail crossing is a short distance further east on Old Route 64. Wallace Gap is NOT a good trailhead -- no parking possible, Better parking is available at nearby Rock Gap. See Mile 0.6 of Section 25. 6/24/14


Nantahala Hiking Club
At the crossing the northbound trail to Section 24 goes north while the southbound trail goes south to Section 25.
See pictures for TN/NC Section 24 for a view of Wallace Gap. 6/24/14


at @

This section is described as Section 8 in the "Appalachian Trail Guide to North Carolina-Georgia"
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Section 24 Pictures

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  Page last updated: 9/9/2022 4:53:52 PM