This part of the mountain is solidly in National Forest lands and is relatively protected. Yes, it can still be cut as timber, but you won't see any paved roads cut through these acres, and there won't be any subdivisions landing here.
Here's a map view of the trail. I started near the Big Walker Mountain Tower. The tower's a private property affair. It's an impressive site located at around 3400 feet elevation, but the owner's charge $5 to climb the 100-foot tower. If I'm going to bust my ass climbing, I don't feel like paying for the experience. Not when there are plenty of free spots to catch views of the nearby peaks.
Me, under the rock overhang. I think it would be a safe place to hang out in a thunderstorm.
Beseeching the mountain gods for a nice hike. I guess they had their beseeching ears on that day. It didn't rain until I'd finished my hike.
This is probably one kick-ass beautiful fully bloomed rhododendron today. Not quite ready the day I was there.
First view from near "Monster Rock". I don't know if "monster" refers to the size of the rock, or if monsters live on, around, or under it. I didn't see any monsters.
The entire ridgeline was packed with vast numbers of huge expanses of enormous rocks and boulderfields.
Considering that the only things I encountered on the entire hike were rocks, growing things, and views, this was one of the most peaceful hikes I've enjoyed in quite some time. I'll post more photos from this peak later...