Emerald Outback Trail System

Overview: Located near the summit of Beech Mountain, the Emerald Outback Trail System is an eight plus mile network of gorgeous trails, all situated at approximately 5,000 feet elevation. The system has 7 trails designed with both hikers and bikers in mind. The trails vary in degree of difficulty and offer a wealth of unique terrain and vegetation. For the biker, the trails offer some of the best flowing single and double track trails complete with challenging natural obstacles in North Carolina. The change of elevation through the whole system is 450 feet. An old gravel logging road runs through the middle of the system and offers visitors easy bailout options.

Parking: There are two parking areas to access the trail system. The first, EMO Base Lot, is located across from town hall/visitor center. This parking lot also has a bike wash and kiosk with trail information. Guests parking in this lot will follow trail markers up the mountain to access the trailhead (closed during winter months). The second is the EMO Summit Lot which is accessed by driving along the Beech Mountain Parkway and turning left on N. Pinnacle Ridge Road and following the EMO Access signs.

Restroom/Registration: The visitor center has restrooms and local area information. Individuals are encourage to register with the Visitor’s Center or at the green steel registration boxes located at either trailhead kiosk. Trail maps are located at the kiosks. Please see the individual trail descriptions for more details about each trail in the Emerald Outback Adventure Trail System.

Grant: The trails have been recently upgraded through a Recreational Trails Program Grant from the State of North Carolina. The trail system was designed by former National Mountain Bike Series Champion Todd Branham from Long Cane Trails. The system has excellent signage including Location Identification Markers (LIDs) to assist guests navigating the trails. Due to mountain bike activity, dogs are not allowed on any Emerald Outback trail.


Biking Gallery


Trail Responsibility Handbook