Crowder’s Mountain

Crowder’s Mountain State Park is a 5,217-acre North Carolina state park in Gaston County, North Carolina in the United States. It is near Kings Mountain, North Carolina and on the outskirts of Gastonia, North Carolina, it includes the peaks of Crowder’s Mountain and The Pinnacle.

Crowder’s Mountain even has a trail that traverses two states and three parks, the Ridgeline Trail connects Crowder’s Mountain to King’s Mountain State Park and King’s Mountain National Military Park in South Carolina. I spent the weekend with Gastonia, NC as my base, and did some exploring. While my grandmother’s family roots are all in Laurens County, SC, my grandfather, James Sellers, was from the King’s Mountain area. Similar to my grandmother, the Sellers family goes way back in the area. More to come on that in a future post. Back to Crowder’s Mountain…

The Pinnacle trail is a 2 mile in and 2 mile out trail, listed as “strenuous”. I can tell you this – it’s strenuous. The first part of the hike is a gradual incline, the last part – is steep and rocky, with random stone steps to get to the very top. I’m not an expert navigating regular, uniform steps, so I found this part of the hike the most challenging. The views were totally worth the burn (which I could use anyway).

Every time I felt like I had a really good pace going, and actually passed a couple of people going up, young athletes would bring me back down to Earth, bounding past me like gazelles, and then greeting me again on their way back down as I was still climbing. There were also several lunatic runners.

Thi information above is from an app called AllTrails, I use it frequently. The paid version has a nice feature that lets you download maps and information. Crowders wasn’t bad for connection, but King’s Mountain has no connectivity at all, at least not with Verizon.

Observation – I’ve been rock-deprived living at the beach. I was marvelling at all the rocks, rocky outcroppings, and boulders. Fascinating and fun to see.

I stayed in Gastonia, NC overnight. At one point I got my car stuck in a ditch (see future post for details on that story) and a nice gentleman helped me navigate out with no harm done. He recommended a place for dinner, a place called Cheddars, Cheddars is a chain I’d never heard of, but their full name is Cheddars Scratch Kitchen, and they had a bar, so that’s where I went. Traveling solo, I hate to take up a table at a restaurant, and it is usually easy to get a single seat at a bar.

Coming off the mountain to a croissant the second I sat down, a delicious, cornflake-encrusted-gravy-laden country fried steak, and a couple of ridiculous cocktails was the perfect ending to Day One of my North Carolina adventure.

The drink was called The Painkiller. I took two. That’s the limit, two.



Official NC State Parks Crowder’s Mountain

Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen, Gastonia, NC

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