This hike is a high-country favorite. For one, it’s easy and accessible for most folks, even the non-hikers in the crowd (read: something active to do with your more sedentary visitors). Circumnavigating a lake, the trail is relatively flat and the tread is good, for the most part (there are a couple of mushy spots). It’s scenic, with intimate passages along a rhododendron-lined lake as well panoramas, including a great peek at Grandfather Mountain. If the hike inspires, you can rent a canoe at the boat house and there’s ample opportunities to picnic. A nice diversion for a day behind the wheel on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

More info: National Park Service website, 828.298.0398; “100 Classic Hikes in North Carolina,” Hike No. 55.

Maps: Available at trailhead kiosk; USGS: Boone.

Map of trailhead here.
View 20 Classic North Carolina Hikes: Price Lake in a larger map

price lake
Location: Blue Ridge Parkway, Milepost 297
Nearest town: Blowing Rock
Latitude: N36 08.253
Longitude: W81 44.173
Difficulty: Easy
Distance: 2.7 miles
Loop/one-way: Loop
Time to complete: 1-2 hours