High Country Association of REALTORS News

Live the Dream #29 - Howard's Knob

Not many towns have the luxury of a penthouse observation deck. Boone is among the lucky few. It basks in the shadow of Howard's Knob, a mountain 4,396 feet above sea level, and just over 1,000 feet above Boone.

Howards Knob viewOfficially a park, Howard's Knob is easily accessible to motorists or any jogger looking for a serious challenge. It includes a small field, picnic shelter and two overlooks, one of which opens up to most of the town. The park is closed at night and during the winter months.

The mountain top was briefly famous in the late 70s for a one-of-a-kind structure - a 131-foot tall wind turbine. It was built in 1978 but taken down five years later.

Today the mountain remain popular for its outstanding view and, in recent years, an insane challenge. The peak is now officially the last finish line in the High Country Triple Crown. It's simply called The Knob, a brutal 5k straight up to the sky.

The Knob-- 2 miles of pure hill! The race begins at the Watauga County Library in downtown historic Boone. Out of the parking lot you'll begin the Knob ascent with a left turn onto Queen St. which becomes Grand Blvd. Taking a right onto Bear Trail, the route will then take a left onto Eastwood/Junaluska Road. Finally, after a major climb and with the peak in-sight, the route takes a right onto Howard's Knob Road and finishes in Howard's Knob Park. The route reaches an elevation of 4,406 feet (1,343 m) above sea level, and climbs nearly 1,000 feet (300 m) above the town of Boone and the campus of Appalachian State University. The course is surrounded with fall foliage and unparalleled views from the top.