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Hike from Jumping Off Rock Trailhead to summit Dark Mountain

Primary Route: From the Jumping Off Rock Trailhead, hike south on the Uwharrie Trail to summit Dark Mountain
Hiking Distance:
Elevation Gain: Unknown
Difficulty: Moderate
Trailhead: Near 2410 Flint Hill Road, Troy, NC. Click here for directions from the beginning of Ophir Road on NC 109 to the Jumping Off Rock/Dark Mountain Trailhead. When coming from NC 109, the trailhead will be on the right side of Flint Hill Road. Jumping Off Rock Trailhead (also known as Dark Mountain Trailhead) is the northernmost trailhead for the Uwharrie Trail, and overlooks Barnes Creek. There is off-road parking available at the trailhead. Click here to see the Forest Service map that shows the Uwharrie Trail and Jumping Off Rock Trailhead.

Hiking Directions: A hike up the Uwharrie Trail (headed south) following the white blazes will lead you to a beautiful view of the surrounding Uwharrie Mountains in the winter. The trail is rocky and can be steep, but it is not a long distance to the top.

At the summit you will find Painted Rock, where legend holds that a Native American princess threw herself to her death when her brave left for battle and she was certain he would be killed. However, he managed to survive the battle and returned to find that she had already jumped to her death. He was so distraught that he then killed himself. His blood landed on what is now known as Painted Rock, and can be seen as red stains on the rock face that will reappear even after being scrubbed away. Click here to watch Don Childrey tell the story during the 2014 Uwharrie Trail Thru-Hike.

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Thanks to Don Childrey’s book Uwharrie Lakes Region Trail Guide for detailed information.