I have to be honest and say that perhaps this trail is not the best choice for a hike in the August heat. It's a workout! It would be best in spring (lots of wildflowers) and in the coolness and color of fall. The first section is fairly easy, but it gets fairly strenuous after that. If you go, I recommend you wear good hiking boots and take plenty of water. The trail itself passes through many beautiful areas and is very well done with all the steps and creek crossings well-constructed and maintained. Just so you won't be surprised, there is a five dollar fee for this trail, as it is part of Grandfather Mountain (which is privately owned). We hiked for 2.3 miles to the "profile view" (above). It's not the classic view of the grandfather lying down -- instead, this is described as an old man in profile looking out across the mountains. Here is a photo of the sign which describes the "great stone face." It's neat, but there's not much of a view besides what you see above. If it's breathtaking, panoramic views that you're after, then go to the top of Grandfather Mountain. On a clear day you can see forever (as Ol' Blue Eyes used to sing).
Directions: From the intersection of highways 221 and 105 in Linville, NC head north on 105 towards Boone and travel for 4.5 miles. A sign will point the way to the profile trail entrance to your right.