This past weekend was the North America SOTA Weekend, where SOTA enthusiasts across the country were expected to be on summits, radios in hand, talking to one-another. I was enjoying a three-day weekend with the family in the mountains of Western North Carolina, where I was sure to make several summits. In fact, I only made two.
This was not one of them.
I was cruising the SOTA Maps website looking for some easy pickin’s and thought that Shoal Mountain would be one of them. It’s located just north of Cashiers, North Carolina, which was a short drive from where we were staying in Highlands. Actually, we were already in Cashiers and the wife gave me permission to attempt a summit should I return at the agreed-upon time.
Shoal Mountain looked like it might fit the bill since it was located relatively close to a road:
Note that Shoal Mountain is accessible via Pine Creek Road, not this fictitious road that is opposite 107 from Shepherds Drive.
You can imagine my disappointment when I arrived to discover this sign:
Legally, I don’t know if there is much difference between “Private Road” and “No Trespassing,” but I wasn’t up to the task of finding out. However, in case you’re curious, it appears that Lake Vista Drive will lead you to the top of Shoal Mountain.
There are plenty of inactivated mountains in this corner of North Carolina, so until I get desperate enough to start knocking on doors to gain access to private property on mountain tops, this one will just have to wait.