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Hiking, Smoky Mountains, Southeast / 11.11.2013

This 3 day solo backpacking trip covered trails on the north and west ends of Cades Cove including Rich Mountain Loop, Ace Gap Trail, Hannah Mountain Trail and Rabbit Creek Trail and comprised 38.9 trail miles. My van and bicycle was used to position among trailheads on Cades Cove Loop road and Parson's Branch road. Getting There: Nearing midnight on Thursday, I drove past Tremont and on to the end of Middle Prong Rd where I slept in the rear of my Sienna mini-van. It was a dark starry night...

Cohutta and Frog Mountain Wilderness, Hiking, Southeast / 20.10.2013

Saturday, October 19, 2013 - Bushwhacking Big Creek Trail - 14.1 miles Getting there: From McCaysville, GA continue through Copperhill, TN to Highway 64. Take Hwy 64 west to Ocoee water tower. Cross dam and continue on Forest Service (FS) Rd 45 for 3 miles to FS 221. Turn right and go 0.9 mi to Big Frog Trailhead on left. FS 45 and 221 are narrow gravel roads in satisfactory condition. Route - Day 1 Low Gap Parking to Low Gap via Big Frog Mountain Trail - 2.4 miles Low Gap to Grassy...

Cohutta and Frog Mountain Wilderness, Hiking, Southeast / 23.09.2013

September 22, 2013 This was a 11.9 mile day hike up Fork Ridge Trail to Big Frog Mountain and returning along Licklog Ridge to the east of Fork Ridge. [caption id="attachment_796" align="alignleft" width="640"] View of Fork Ridge from Licklog Ridge.[/caption]                             Started hiking at 7:30 AM and finished at 1:30 PM. The trail starts climbing gradually to the wilderness area. After 2.5 miles I turned right at a signed junction with Rough Creek Trail. Rough Creek Trail drops to Rough Creek, then climbs back to junction with Fork Ridge Trail after 1.8 miles....

Cohutta and Frog Mountain Wilderness, Hiking, Southeast / 04.08.2013

August 3, 2013 - Getting Away I needed a quick wilderness fix without a long drive, so on a Saturday afternoon, I quickly threw an overnight pack together and loaded my mountain bike on the car. Within a couple of hours I had left my car behind at the Horseshoe Bend Trailhead and was on my mountain bike tearing down a rocky forest service road back toward my cached pack near the lower Jacks River Trailhead. I forded back over streams which only minutes before I had carefully crossed...