Cold Mountain (North Carolina)

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Cold Mountain
Cold Mountain-27527.jpg
Cold Mountain as seen from the Blue Ridge Parkway
Elevation 6,030 ft (1,840 m)
Prominence 990 ft (300 m)
Location Haywood County, North Carolina, U.S.
Range Great Balsam Mountains
Coordinates 35°24′34″N 82°51′22″W / 35.40944°N 82.85611°W / 35.40944; -82.85611
Topo map USGS Cruso
Easiest route Hike

Cold Mountain is in the mountain region of western North Carolina, United States.[1]

The mountain is one of the Great Balsam Mountains which are a part of the Blue Ridge Mountains within the Appalachian Mountains.

Cold Mountain is located within the Shining Rock Wilderness of the Pisgah National Forest about 15 miles (24 kilometers) southeast of Waynesville and 35 miles (56 kilometers) south of Asheville. The mountain lies completely within federal lands and is uninhabited. It rises to 6,030 feet (1,819 m) above sea level. It is the 40th tallest mountain in the eastern United States.[2]


Cold Mountain and the Shining Rock Wilderness are part of Pisgah National Forest. Much of the Forest was originally owned by George Washington Vanderbilt II, builder of the Biltmore Estate. After his death, his widow sold the land that included the mountain to the United States Forest Service at $5 an acre to help create the Pisgah National Forest as the first National Forest in the eastern United States.

Wurtsmith Air Force Base (now decommissioned) was named after Major General Paul Wurtsmith who was killed when his B-25 Mitchell crashed on Cold Mountain in September 1946.


The mountain was made famous by the 1997 novel Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier. A major motion picture based on the novel was distributed by Miramax Films in 2003. The movie was filmed in Romania. Director Anthony Minghella said that the lack of old-growth forests and period buildings was the reason he chose not to film in Western North Carolina.[3]


  1. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Cold Mountain
  2. ^ "The Tallest Mountains in the Eastern U.S.". Retrieved 2007-07-09. 
  3. ^ "Real Cold Mountain not what you saw on screen". USA Today. Associated Press. January 19, 2004. Retrieved 2009-01-01. 

Coordinates: 35°24′34″N 82°51′22″W / 35.409444°N 82.856111°W / 35.409444; -82.856111