This is by far my favorite hike in the area.
Not just because it was the first hike I took in this area, but because
the vistas are incredible! You will definitely earn them, however,
since the hike is very steep. Definitely not for beginners. Also,
be sure and go during cooler weather, because you will get quite warm going
up the trail. That said, here is what the hike is like:
The hike starts the same as the Frog Pond Trail. You cross the low water
bridge of Rayhouse road (a.k.a. road 40), then follow the
road to your left, passing through the yellow gate with the sun shaped pattern
on the fencing. This access road takes you to a small
clearing. On your right you will see the metal sign announcing the
Blue Ridge Trail. Follow the trail up Still Gulch, as it winds to the
top of Blue ridge. You start off in the trees, but after a few turns you
will end up in the more open hillsides of the ridge.
At the first clearing you will be able to get a clear view of Glascock mountain
on the opposite side of the creek and highway. You will quickly begin
your ascent of the ridge. Once you reach the top
of the ridge, the trail levels off, and you have just a few short up-and-downs
to get to Fiske peak. Be sure to look for the metal
USGS survey marker at the top of the peak. That's how you know you have
really arrived! (as if the panorama of the valley below doesn't tell you.)
The trail continues along the ridge to the Fiske Creek Rd. trailhead.
If you piece together this hike with the Blue
ridge south hike, you can have a very long loop.
Distance: 4 miles from the trailhead to Fiske Peak. (one way) Total
elevation gain of 2100 feet.