The trail is a steep connector trail to the Oliver Mountain Trail with 800 feet of elevation gain over one mile, an arduous climb. The trail is well marked, wide, and in good condition.
On winter days the view is impressive. The surrounding mountains and valleys are a beautiful backdrop with views north and south. Lake Moomaw is visible from points along the upper portion of the trail.
Used with the upper part of the Oliver Mountain Trail and the upper part of FDR 192, a 4.4-mile loop back to the trailhead parking area is possible. Alternatively, The Jackson Trail can be used to connect via the Oliver Mountain Trail (a right turn) which descends gradually 1400 feet over about 4.0 miles to its trailhead at the Fortney Branch Boat Launch on Lake Moomaw.
Trail description and directions are courtesy of the U.S. Forest Service. The USFS home page is www.fs.fed.us
From Route 220 heading north from Covington, turn left onto Route 687. Then turn left onto Route 641/666. At the Lake Moomaw Recreation Area entrance, keep left onto Route 666. At the “T” intersection, turn left and travel south for about 0.8 mile. Turn right onto FDR 192 (a gravel road), and travel on a right-of-way through private land for about 0.9 mile. The Jackson Trail will be on the left, uphill side of the parking area on FDR 192 at the National Forest Boundary line, just before a Forest Service gate.
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