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Hike - Mullens Cove Loop, Prentice-Cooper Forest - Wed., Sept.28, 2016

WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 28, 2016
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from Chota Center
 
MULLENS COVE LOOP   (Prentice-Cooper Forest/Chattanooga)
Distance:   10 miles
Rating:   Moderate
Driving time:  2 hours
Elevation Change:  300 feet; Cumulative elevation change of 1700 feet   
Leader:   Dolly Garnett   865-556-5014   dandbgarnett@charter.net

This loop is located off of the Cumberland Trail in the Tennessee River Gorge Segment,  west of Chattanooga in the Prentice-Cooper Forest.  The first part of the trail is flat and easy passing through a pleasant forest on the plateau.  The trail then descends into the forest following a creek and then continues with a series of gentle climbing and descending throughout the 10 mile loop.     Points of interest are Snoopers Rock with wide open views of the Tennessee River gorge from a large rock bluff, Mullens Cove overlook, and a natural rockhouse and stone door.

Hike - Cumberland Trail, Rock Creek Gorge - Fri., Sept.9, 2016

FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 9, 2016
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from Chota Center

 
CUMBERLAND TRAIL, ROCK CREEK GORGE (shuttle)
Distance:   8.5 miles
Elevation Change:    300 feet
Rating:   Moderate/Difficult
Driving Time:  1.5 hours
Leader:   Tom Ringenbach  865-201-9014   tommamier@gmail.com
 
This hike explores a section of the Cumberland Trail between Dayton and Chattanooga.  During the first two miles, we hike through remnants of a Bowater, Inc. pine plantation.  Then the trail descends into Rock Creek Gorge and we follow the creek for most of the remainder of the hike.  The creek has a number of deep, clear pools.  The author of a News Sentinel review of this hike recommends packing a swim suit…that is up to each hiker.  Later in the hike is a terrific view of  Rock Creek from a high overlook.
It is also recommended wearing long pants for protection from chiggers, ticks and poison ivy.
This is a shuttle hike so we will drop off a car or two at the terminus of the hike, then proceed to the trailhead.

 

Hike - Schoolhouse Gap loop - Fri., Aug.12, 2016

FRIDAY, AUGUST 12, 2016
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from Chota Center
 
SCHOOLHOUSE GAP LOOP
Distance:   8.9 miles
Elevation Gain:  500 feet
Rating:   Moderate
Driving Time:  1.25 hours
Leader:  Terry Nyenhuis  865-206-9476  terrynyenhuis@gmail.com
 
We’ll begin this hike 3.9 miles towards Cades Cove from the Townsend “Y” on Laurel Creek Road.  We’ll hike 1.1 miles up the Schoolhouse Gap trail, then turn left on Turkeypen Ridge trail for 3.6 miles to Laurel Creek Road.  We’ll cross the road and hike 2.8 miles on Finley Cane trail to Bote Mountain trail.  We’ll then hike this trail downhill 1.4 miles to Laurel Creek Road a short distance from where we began.  Most of the hike will be an easy walk in the woods.  There is an elevation gain of 200 feet in the first mile, then 300 feet in the first  3/4 mile of Turkeypen Ridge trail.

Hike - Charlie's Bunion - Wed., July 27, 2016

WEDNESDAY, JULY 27, 2016
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from Chota Center

 
CHARLIE’S BUNION
Distance:   8 miles
Elevation Gain:   1640 feet
Rating:    Difficult
Driving time:  Approx. 2 hours  
Leader:    Ed Walinski   865-657-3636   edwalins1964@gmail.com
 
This challenging trail begins at Newfound Gap in Smoky Mountain National Park.  The trail traverses some of the most spectacular views in the Smokies.  The steady climb over the course of the first two miles will lead to distant observation of the North Carolina Smokies.    Many hikers rate the next two miles as some of the most spectacular in the Smokies.  This is an in and out hike.  The view from the Bunion makes all the effort worthwhile.

Hike - Ace Gap - Fri., July 8, 2016

FRIDAY, JULY 8, 2016
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from Chota Center
 
ACE GAP
Distance:  11.2 miles   
Elevation Gain:  400 feet
Rating:   Slightly Strenuous
Driving Time: 1.25 hr.  
Leader:   Terry Nyenhuis   865-206-9476   terrynyenhuis@gmail.com
 
The trailhead for this in and out hike is on the Great Smoky Mountain National Park boundary where Rich Mountain Road meets Old Cades Cove Road, leading to Townsend.  The Ace Gap Trail is peaceful, not heavily used, and relatively level.  There are several climbs, but they are not very long.  The cumulative round trip elevation gain is near 2100 feet.  The hike will be a good physical workout.

Overnight Hike - Banner Elk,NC - Tues.& Wed., Aug.23 & 24, 2016

Overnight Hike Banner Elk, NC – Roan Mountain, TN
 
Tuesday - Wednesday, August 23-24, 2015 (Optional extra day Thursday, August 25)
Depart at 8:00 am from the Chota Center
We can arrange a place to meet those going from Kahite
 
Hotel --- Best Western Mountain Lodge at Banner Elk (828) 898-4571
  Rate $76.49 per day + tax
              Make reservations for either one or two nights
  Mention Tellico Village Hiking Club when making reservation
  Please notify Bob Kutschera by phone or email after making a reservation
 
For Additional Information  --- Curt Sheldon 865-458-8510 (H)  865-850-1951 (C)
  curtssheldon@gmail.com
or
Bob Kutschera  865-408-3092 (H)  865-356-1086 (C)
bkkutch@yahoo.com

 
Itinerary ---
 
Tuesday, August 23 --- Drive to Banner Elk with a 5 mile moderate hike along the way.  The hike will is called the Three Balds Hike and is along the Appalachian Trail plus a side trail along the top ridge of Roan Mountain.  It is reputedly one of the most beautiful hikes on the Appalachian Trail.   We will plan to have lunch on the trail shortly after beginning the hike.  Following the hike we will continue to Banner Elk and check into the Best Western between 4:00 and 5:00.
 
We can also provide directions to a short Easy Hike to Elk River Falls as an alternative.
 
Social hour that evening will be in the Beech Room at the hotel from 5:30 to 6:30, followed by dinner in a restaurant of your choice in Banner Elk.  Bring the beverage of your choice and a light snack to share.  Remember we are going to dinner afterwards.  There are good restaurant choices in Banner Elk.   
 
Wednesday, August 24 --- Leave the hotel at 9:00 for the hikes.  We have 2 moderate short hikes planned for the day.  The two are within a miles of each other.  Hikers can choose to do 1 and/or 2.    Descriptions of each are shown below.   Leave the hotel at 9:00 for the drive to trailhead.  Driving time is approximately 45 minutes.  
 

  1. Hike the Big Lost Cove Trail.  We will continue by car about 1 mile to the trailhead.  The hike is rated moderate and is about 3.5 miles in and out.  The elevation gain is about 800 feet.  The trail rises to the top of the ridge and then descends to cliffs overlooking Grandfather Mountain. These cliffs have a sheer 300 to 400 ft vertical drop.  There are Peregrine Falcons nesting locations along the cliffs as well.  The cliffs are over a 1,000 ft above the gorge below.

 

  1. Hike the Little Lost Cove Trail.  It is rated moderate and is approximately 2 miles in and out. The elevation gain is about 500 feet.  A nice trail leads to a rock outcrop from which a spectacular view of the Blue Ridge Mountains with Grandfather Mountain at the top unfolds. Most of the trail follows old road or road beds; it is moderately rocky in places but generally in good shape. The highest point on the trail has a few side paths over to the cliffs; be sure to explore them all.

 
Thursday, August 25 --- Optional Day  We will not plan a specific hike but here are numerous other hikes, activities and areas to explore  --- the Grandfather Mountain attraction, Boone, NC with its shops and restaurants, Blowing Rock, NC, The Linville Falls area in NC, Roan Mountain State Park in TN and driving on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Hike - Cove Mountain to Laurel Falls - Wed., June 22, 2016

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 22, 2016
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from Chota Center
 
COVE MOUNTAIN TO LAUREL FALLS (shuttle)
Distance:    12.5 miles  
Elevation Gain:  1700 feet  
Rating:   Difficult
Driving Time:  1-1/2 hours
Leader:   Bev Hawkins   865-406-0297   bevhawkins@aol.com
 
We will drive to Sugarlands Visitor Center to consolidate for the trip back to begin the shuttle at the famous Laurel Falls Trail.  In 1.3 miles the 75’ waterfall appears for our enjoyment.  The difficult 1700’ climb over 4 miles is rewarded with a view at the top, a look at the air quality monitoring station, and the junction with Cove Mountain Trail.  This beautiful, comfortable walk has some views, waterfalls, and hopefully we will see some mountain laurel, azaleas, and rhododendron blooming on our 2700’ decent in 8.5 miles.

Hike - Devil's Racetrack - Fri., June 10, 2016

FRIDAY, JUNE 10, 2016
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from Chota Center
 
DEVIL’S RACETRACK
Distance:  6.5 miles   
Elevation Gain:  600 feet
Rating:   Moderate
Driving Time: 1 hr.  
Leader:   George Zola  614-937-0767   zola1029@gmail.com
 
Devil’s Racetrack is an in and out hike along the Cumberland Trail.  The trail begins in a section of Cove Lake State Park north of Knoxville.  The hike parallels I-75 through the woods crossing over a boulder field before climbing toward the overlook.  Along the way we will pass 2 waterfalls and cascades.  The Devil’s Racetrack overlook is a collection of large rocks and offers one of the best views along the Cumberland Trail.  The hike is rated moderate for crossing the boulder field and the elevation gain up to the overlook.  

Hike - Mt. LeConte via Rainbow Falls and Bullhead trails - Wed., May 25, 2016

WEDNESDAY, MAY 25, 2016
Depart at 7:00 a.m. from Chota Center
 
NOTE EARLIER DEPARTURE TIME
 
Mt. LeConte via Rainbow Falls and Bullhead Trails
Distance:    Approx. 13.7 miles
Rating:  Difficult/Strenuous
Driving Time:   1.75 hours
Elevation gain:   3860 feet
Leader:    Dolly Garnett   865-556-5014   dandbgarnett@charter.net
 
Points of interest will be Rainbow Falls, magnificent overlooks and vistas (weather permitting), and of course Mt. LeConte and the Lodge.  The llamas should be at the top when we are there for lunch.   We will ascend  Rainbow Falls Trail and return on Bullhead Trail making a loop.   It will be a long strenuous,  but rewarding hike.

Hike - Twentymile Loop - Fri., May 13, 2016

FRIDAY, MAY 13, 2016
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from Chota Center
 
TWENTYMILE LOOP
Distance:   7.5 Miles  
Rating:    Moderate
Elevation Gain:   1000 feet
Driving time:  1-1/2  hours
Leader:   Bruce Fulton   865-657-3163  fultonb@outlook.com
 
This is a loop hike connecting three GSMNP trails.  The first three miles ascend the Twentymile Trail to the junction with the Twentymile Loop Trail.  Twentymile Creek parallels the route most of the way and there are many opportunities for water photography including Twentymile Cascade.  There is 1000 feet of elevation gain on this trail, and there are some steep sections.  The hike then follows the Twentymile Loop Trail to the descent on Wolf Trail.  

Hike - East Lakeshore Trail, Mizell Bluff - Wed., April 27, 2016

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 27, 2016
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from the Chota Center
 
Mizell Bluff Trail towards Wind River(East Lakeshore) Trail
Distance: Approximately 5 miles in and out
Rating: Easy
Driving Time: 30 Minutes
Leader: Larry Elder 865 657-9722 eelder49@gmail.com

 
This trail is a pleasant hiking experience winding along the shoreline from the new Jackson Bend Rd/Mizell Bluff parking towards Wind River/Jackson Bend Rd. There are a few slopes of moderate elevation.

Hike - Lookout Mountain - Fri., April 8, 2016

FRIDAY, APRIL 8, 2016
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from the Chota Center
 
LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN
Distance:   approx. 5 miles
Elevation Gain:   approx. 600 feet
Rating:  Moderate
Driving time:  90 minutes
Leader:  Curt Sheldon  865-458-8510   curtssheldon@gmail.com
 
This hike will hopefully appeal to those who enjoy great vistas and/or Civil War history.  Lookout Mountain was the scene of a significant Civil War battle on November 24, 1863.  We stop for lunch at Point Park, which has a small museum, cannons, monuments, and signage documenting the battle.  It also boasts fantastic vistas of Chattanooga.

Hike - Ramsey Cascades - Wed., Mar. 23, 2016

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 23, 2016
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from the Chota Center
RAMSEY CASCADES
Distance:    8 miles
Rating:  Difficult
Driving Time:   2 hours
Elevation gain:   2100 feet
Leader:   Gary Glesser  865-657-9677  gglesser@me.com
 
A hike through a virgin forest to a 90 foot cascade, the highest waterfall accessible by trail in the National Park.  The trail follows first the Middle Prong of the Little Pigeon River and then the Ramsey Prong.  The elevation gain increases as the trail approaches the cascade.

Hike - Bob Stratton Bald/Hangover - Fri., Mar.11, 2016

FRIDAY,  MARCH 11, 2016
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from the Chota Center
 
BOB STRATTON BALD/HANGOVER (optional)
Distance:  6 or 12 miles
Rating:   Moderate or Difficult
Driving Time:   1.5 hours
Elevation Gain:  Approx. 900 feet
Leader:  John Winn  865-824-6200   john.winn@gmail.com
             Gail Eades  865-599-6785   g3evolution@gmail.com
 
Bob Stratton Bald is a grassy meadow located off the Cherohala Skyway at an elevation of 5360 feet and offers views of the Unicoi Mountains as well as the Joyce Kilmer Wilderness Area. Hangover is a rocky promitory three plus rugged miles beyond Bob Stratton Bald.  It offers one of the best mountain views in all of East TN.
The trailhead is located at Beech Gap just before the North Carolina border.  The first 1.8 miles is on a fairly flat and wide trail with minimum elevation changes.  For the remaining 1.5 miles the trail changes to a narrow trail which is somewhat rutted (cup shaped) and follows a ridge line through patches of rhododendrons and blackberry bushes.  The elevation change for this portion of the trail is 749 feet over 1.1 miles with the most difficult portion being a 0.2 stretch.  Please keep in mind that weather conditions at these elevations can be more extreme than at lower elevations.

Hike - Frozen Head State Park - Wed., Feb.24, 2016 (rescheduled to Fri., Feb.26, 2016)

WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 24, 2016
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from the Chota Center
 
FROZEN HEAD STATE PARK
Distance:   7.5 miles
Elevation Gain:  1467 feet
Rating:  Moderate
Driving time:  1.5 hours
Leader:   Tim Kalina   847-917-0994   timkalina@aol.com
 
We will be hiking Panther Branch to North Old Mac trail.  Highlights include Debord Falls and Emory Gap Falls.  Panther Branch is the steepest part of the hike.  There is one crossing that can be difficult, especially if it’s icy.   The hike ends at a picnic shelter where there are tables for our lunch.

Hike - Courthouse Rock - Fri., Feb.12, 2016 (canceled because of snow)

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 12, 2016
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from the Chota Center
 
COURTHOUSE ROCK
Distance:  4 miles
Elevation Gain:  1000 feet
Rating:  Moderate
Driving Time:  1.5 hours
Leader:  Bev Hawkins  865-406-0297    bevhawkins@aol.com
 
The hike to Courthouse Rock is off  Newfound Gap Road, about 3 miles from Sugarlands Visitor  Center.   It is an off trail or manway left from settlers, like Joe Quilliams, and will show us:  some good lookouts, their homesites, Quilliams cave still, Quilliams Falls, where they bathed and obtained drinking and cooking water, Judge Rock, and 60’ Courthouse Rock.  After we hike, we can go in Sugarlands Visitor Center to see the free museum and 20 minute movie about the park in their theater, if people are interested.

Hike - Old Sugarlands & Twin Creek trails - Wed., Jan.27, 2016

WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 27, 2016
 
Depart at 7:45 a.m. from the Chota Center (NOTE TIME CHANGE)

 
OLD SUGARLANDS/LUNCH IN GATLINBURG/TWIN CREEK TRAIL
Distance:  10 miles
Rating:    Moderate
Elevation Gain:   Approx. 1100 feet
Driving time:  1-1/2  hours
Leader:   Bob Kutschera   bkkutch@yahoo.com    865-408-3092

This hike is the Club’s annual January hike which includes lunch at a restaurant in Gatlinburg.  We will begin at Sugarlands Visitor Center.  It is approximately 8 miles from the start of the hike to the restaurant.  It is another 2 miles on Twin Creek Trail back to Sugarlands Visitor Center.  
 

Hike - Norris Dam State Park - Fri., Jan.8, 2016

FRIDAY, JANUARY 8, 2016
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from the Chota Center

 
ANDREWS RIDGE LOOP
Distance:   6 miles
Rating:    Moderate
Driving Time:   1 hr. 15 min.
Elevation gain:  1,340 feet at the trailhead to 1,050 feet at a low point
Leader:  Bruce Barbre  865-567-0192  bruceb612@gmail.com
 
This is a loop hike combining three trails:  Rock Creek, Andrews Ridge, Sinkhole, and the Hootin Hollow, above Norris Lake.  The hike begins near the West Campground and follows what were once pioneer roads weaving around the hills and hollows above the lake.
 

Hike - Middle Prong - Fri., Dec.4, 2015

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 4, 2015
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from Chota Center
 
MIDDLE PRONG  TRAIL TO CCC CAMP
Distance:   6 miles
Elevation Gain: 800 feet  
Rating:  Easy
Driving Time:  1.25 hours
Leader:  Hamish deWilde  860-716-4016   
 
The trail is one of the most beautiful sections of the Great Smoky National Park near Townsend and Tremont.  The trail follows the rushing Middle Prong of the Little River, and features overlooks of waterfalls, cascades and rapids cut through a narrow gorge.  This hike follows a wide old logging railroad bed up a gentle slope.  Since the hike is between 2000 and 3000 feet elevation, the temperature will be lower than in Tellico Village.   

 

Hike - Lone Mountain State Forest - Wed., Nov.18, 2015 (cancelled - forecasted rain)

WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 18, 2015
Depart at 8:00 a.m. from Chota Center
 
LONE MOUNTAIN STATE FOREST
Distance:   8 miles
Rating:   Moderate
Driving time:  1.25 hours
Elevation Gain:   830 feet
Leader:   Gail Eades  865-599-6785  g3evolution@gmail.com
 
This hike is in a lesser visited state forest, climbing the slopes of Lone Mountain to reach a rock outcrop and panoramic vista from Coyote Point.  We’ll reach Rankin Springs at 3.2 miles, then continue to Coyote Point for a lunch stop, enjoying the sunny vista.  There are switchbacks going up the mountain.  It is a definite climb up the mountain, but well worth it.