Maxwells to Max Patch


I’ve wanted to see what Max Patch was all about. We’ve been to Roan Mountain and saw the balds there but I wanted to see Max Patch too.

Lots of places say they have a 360-degree view. Well, Max Patch has it while standing in one place. It was windy, cool and totally beautiful.


We had planned to go earlier in the week but hubby had a cold and with his already bad sinus and allergy issues he just wasn’t up to it.


My ideal day would’ve been to take the Appalachian Medley Scenic Byway route, see all the nearby waterfalls in NC and TN, hike around on Max Patch, catch the sunset, wait to see the full moon, then stop at Lake Junaluska to see the cross lit up and night… but there’s always another day.

This was the first real outing my new camera backpack went on which led to the update being added at the bottom of that post.


We left the house around 3:00pm. We found the Harmen Den exit off Hwy 40 with no problem. The dirt road, Cold Springs Road is slow going and since we hadn’t had rain in a while it was dusty.


We pulled off to see Little Fall Branch waterfall.  It was a short quarter mile walk. We passed a downed tree that had all sorts of little branches leaned up against it. It was pretty large, like maybe a 3 to 4 feet wide tunnel that was 12 to 15 feet long. It looked like new construction so we could see there wasn’t an animal hiding in the den.

I said I wonder what kind of animal makes that kind of den?
Hubby replied It’s probably Harmens since we’re in Harmens Den.
I asked if Harmen was likely a bear, fox, or beaver… no answer.

I wish I’d taken a photo.  We reached the falls but because of the lack of rain, there wasn’t much water coming over. We decided we’d see how long it took us to get to Max Patch and decide if we wanted to try to make it to Wolf Creek Falls this time.

I’d printed out the directions to Max Patch and both waterfalls at the beginning of the week. Since I’m directionally challenged I just handed them all to hubby to figure out what he felt up to doing. He decided we’d to the other things another time when he felt better and sometime after we saw Max Patch for ourselves.

We went left at the entrance to take the more wooded path to the top. We passed the most fall color we’ve seen on one row of trees. We saw dogs, some on leashes, some not, and lots of toilet paper squares 😦 and at least 20 or 30 tents. The Appalachian Trail crosses over the bald and I guess the windy top is a good campsite. Too bad people leave the TP!

The view was incredible. We’d been there for a bit before We spotted a rainbow in the clouds and even saw a person flying a kite. I was there a long time before I saw the body of water to the right of the setting sun – hubby just couldn’t understand how I’d missed seeing that for so long. After the sunset I tried my hand at light painting outside then turned my camera around and shot the sky behind me before we headed straight down the main path the parking lot. On the drive home (with my camera in the backpack) we rounded a curve to see the huge full moon right above the interstate. I will definitely go back to this place and next time I take my lens ball.



2 thoughts on “Maxwells to Max Patch

    1. KiM Post author

      Joe, you should go. It’s not too far. It’s more of a walk than a hike and pictures just can’t capture the beauty like being there!



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