• Activities:

    Photography, Hiking

  • Skill Level:

    Beginner

  • Season:

    Year Round

  • Trail Type:

    Out-and-Back

  • RT Distance:

    1 Miles

  • Elevation Gain:

    403 Feet

Easy Parking
Food Nearby
Forest
Scenic
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Bald Knob offers stunning views of the New River Valley and perfect sunset photo opportunities. There is also a large rocky outcrop to explore. 

Unobstructed views with little hiking effort make Bald Knob one of the best locations to see the sunset in southwestern Virginia.

Easy to access from US-460 in Giles County, take Mountain Lake Road (VA-700) for 7 miles and park in the gravel lot on the left by the intersection of VA-613 and Mountain Lake Outfitters. Cross VA-700 and begin your hike up the gravel road. After 0.1 miles turn right onto the well-marked "Bald Knob" Trail. This trail is a direct and very steep ascent of 403' in 0.4 miles. You will emerge from the woods onto the rocky summit of Salt Pond Mountain (4365') with views of the New River Valley and West Virginia.

Bald Knob faces southwest, so find a perch and watch the sunset over the mountains directly in front of you. For the 0.5 miles back to the car simply follow the Bald Knob trail back down and turn left on the gravel road.

For an added bonus, you can also explore Mountain Lake, where the movie "Dirty Dancing" was filmed during the 1980's, which is easily accessible from the Bald Knob parking lot.

Pack List

  • Water
  • Camera
  • Extra layer of clothing
  • Sturdy hiking shoes
  • Snacks
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Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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Reviews

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Loved this hike and views! Added bonus to visit the lake basin at the site where “Dirty Dancing” was filmed.

3 months ago
3 months ago

Worth the walk. I'm really out of shape, so I was for sure the 400' climb in 4/10 of a mile was gonna kill me. Had to stop to catch my breath about 8 times. But even with all those stops, it was short enough that it didn't take too long. The view at the top was worth every step, and the walk back down was a lot easier lol.

7 months ago
7 months ago

This is a very convenient hike for families with kids or a great one to bring out of town guests. It's a moderate climb for little kids or out of shape adults but at only half a mile or so it's quick and worth the views at the top. Bring food and have dinner at sunset.

about 1 year ago
about 1 year ago

This hike has breathtaking views and is definitely worth checking out. However, if you are trying to take the true Bald knob trail and not the gravel fire road the signage is very misguiding. My brother and I (who are experienced hikers) attempted this hike with the trail that starts behind the hotel. It was a steep hike and a good workout, but we could not find the peak. When we finally decided to give up we heard people on a rock above us and decided to climb the rock which turned out to be Bald knob. The signs and blazes should really be done so hikers don't get turned around so easily.

over 1 year ago
over 1 year ago

This is a must for sunsets, awesome ending to the day with a headlamp hike back to the parking lot. Beginner's must.

almost 2 years ago
almost 2 years ago

This hike is steep, but it is so short that you are there before you thought possible. There is lots of space to sit and watch the sun go down over the opposing mountains. The wind can move up there so if you plan to stick around bring another layer. An easy hike, an incredible view, wonderful for after work or a quick hike to take advantage of unexpected great weather.

almost 2 years ago
almost 2 years ago

Elyse Clark Explorer

Explorer. Hiker. Photographer.

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