By Landdis Hollifield
On a warm day, Jack Dobson stepped into the shade of Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park’s newest feature—Crevice Pass—and was surprised at how fast the temperature shifted.
“It’s really amazing how cool it is in this area,” said Dobson, while pausing in the center of the new route. “You wouldn’t think that it’s over 80 degrees. I guess it’s because of the rocks and the shade here. This whole area is really amazing.”
Crevice Pass allows guests the opportunity to get up-close to the beautiful rock that makes the Park so unique. After ascending a short staircase, the walkway leads between two boulders and connects into the Outcroppings Trail.
Not only does this area present a new experience, but temporarily it’s the only way to reach the trail leading to Chimney Rock.
The pass may be a little narrow, but people big and small enjoy weaving their way through the new route.
“Those rocks are big,” said an ecstatic 4-year-old Candice Huffman. “I mean really big—giant!”
Like Huffman, the Saponaro Family from Atlanta, Ga. were amazed at how close to nature the new pass brought them.
“I saw those wooden stairs and thought ‘Here we go,” said Robert Saponaro. “When we turned the corner and saw this giant boulder protruding into the trail, it really made our experience more real. Nature was right there. Literally, right in our face.”
Over the next few months the old deck around Gneiss Cave, which normally provides access to the Outcroppings trail that leads to the Chimney, will be replaced with a larger structure that will allow for more picnic tables and even programs under the trees.
Once the deck is reopened, the crevice will continue to operate as an alternative route to the Park’s Outcroppings trail. For the latest Park news and events, visiting chimneyrockpark.com or facebook.com/chimneyrockparknc.
Landdis Hollifield is Public Relations and Promotions Manager, Chimney Rock State Park.