Weekend delays: Many parks are reaching parking space capacity on weekends. Increased visitation is expected at Elk Knob State Park, so please be prepared. Once capacity is reached, the park will be closed until an adequate number of parking spaces become available. The best time to visit is during the week; if you have to visit on a weekend, please be sure to arrive early morning or late afternoon, and have a backup plan in case the park is full when you arrive.
All park facilities are open as of September 11.
Hours for the park office may be limited; please call the park at 828-297-7261 for more information. A properly worn mask or face covering, covering both the nose and the mouth, is required to enter the park office.
Campers, please bring exact change ($15 per site per night for tent campsites) and register and pay for your campsite at the trailhead when you arrive. The group campsite must be reserved in advance by going online or calling Aspira at 1-877-722-6762.
Please continue to follow social distancing guidelines throughout the park, regardless of the behavior of others. Bring a mask or face covering even if you are planning to only be outside; they are required to be worn when you cannot stay 6 feet away from park staff or other visitors. Wash or sanitize your hands before, during, and after your visit. If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, please stay home.Last updated on: Friday, April 2, 2021
Contact the park
5564 Meat Camp Road
Todd, NC 28684
GPS: 36.3325, -81.6906
- November to February:
7:00am to 6:00pm
- March to May:
7:00am to 8:00pm
- June to August:
7:00am to 9:00pm
- September to October:
7:00am to 8:00pm
- Closed Christmas Day
- Monday to Friday:
8:00am to 5:00pm
- Closed state holidays
List of trails
Breathtaking views from the summit of Elk Knob are complemented by intimate forest scenes on a trail system that explores dramatic elevation changes and was created largely by volunteers. The park’s terrain can be steep and challenging, but rewarding.
The 2-mile (one way, moderate) Backcountry Trail winds down into a valley where the backcountry campsites are located. The Backcountry Trail is known for the headwaters of the North Fork of the New River and the spring bloom of the Trout Lily.
The Beech Tree Trail-our Kid's Track Trail-is an easy 1-mile loop around the picnic area. The majority of the trail penetrates a large American Beech forest at 4,500 ft. The Kid’s Track Trail is part of the Kids in Parks initiative. This program rewards kids with small prizes for their hiking achievements.
The 1-mile Maple Run Trail (still under construction) is designed for cross country skiing and hiking. This easy loop trail connects the office to the trailhead parking area. Wake Robin and Giant Trilliums may be seen from the trail in spring.
The 1.9-mile (one way, advanced) Summit Trail was completed with the help of over 6,000 hours provided by many volunteers over a five year span. The beautiful and well maintained trail is a big part of the adventure but the breathtaking view from the top is the icing on the cake. Upon reaching the summit of Elk Knob hikers have spectacular views of The Peak, Three Top and Bluff Mountains, Mount Jefferson, Grandfather Mountain, Mount Mitchell, Mt Rodgers (Va.), and the Iron Mountains in Virginia and Tennessee.