Linville Gorge - Rock Jock Trail
The Rock Jock Trail is a challenging and rewarding hike along the upper cliffs on the West rim of the Linville Gorge. The trail is commonly traveled North to South, beginning at the Conley Cove Trailhead. In this direction, though the terrain is rough in places, it trends gradually downhill in elevation. At the end, however, there is a steep ~800 ft climb back out of the Gorge to the trailhead.
The trailhead features long stretches with incredible, open views of the Linville Gorge, as well as beautiful and interesting rock formations along the way. There are some areas of flowing and dripping water in wet conditions. This can be a hot, dry trail in the heat of Summer.
If doing this trail one way, a shuttle is required. At the North end, there is ample parking at the Conley Cove Trailhead. At the South end, there is no parking directly at the trailhead, but it is a short road walk further south to the Pinch-In Trailhead parking area.
These trailheads are located on Hwy 105 (Kistler Memorial Hwy). This is a dirt/gravel road, and some sections are frequently in very poor condition. Check on the condition of roads before going, if you do not have a high-clearance, off-road vehicle.
This would be a very challenging hike for young children, and there are many locations with exposed cliff edges that would be very dangerous for children.