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2018 Hiking Log

My 2018 Hiking Goal is 450 miles! Most of my hikes are in and near western North Carolina with a few iconic hikes while traveling. Follow my progress.

Light breeze

The breeze feels great hazy but there is still a long range vow

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Another Day

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View from the Top

Cold Mtn cannot be seen today  

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Unexpected Happenings

On this past Monday morning, I was engrossed in the latest project to complete for the company that contracts my labor, Traders Press® which is owned by Peregrine Financial Group out of Cedar Falls, Iowa. This is something I have done every day for the past 15 years. Monday 2:00 p.m. I received an email notice that the owner of …

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Flat Laurel Creek 0724118

July 24, 2011

Distance: 5.7 Miles RT Elevation Change: 900 feet Difficulty: Moderate We park in the grass on the side of the parkway at the intersection of the Art Loeb Trail between the turn off to Black Balsam and the Devil’s Courthouse at approximately mile marker 421.3. Go north on the Art Loeb.

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Hiking with Friends

November 8, 2010

Trail: Trillium It was my first time to hike Trillium.  It’s a big closed in so the views are as great, but the creeks are pretty and the trail is nice. A juvenile bear made his presence known and had become quite a nuisance.  The staff set a trap for him and we heard the trap trip during breakfast.  Then, …

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The Crew

November 9, 2009

LeConte Trail: Alum Cave Trail Our guests were my brother and two of his sons. The weather was crisp and sunny. The two youngsters enjoyed the dining hall the best, I think.  They drank buckets of hot chocolate!

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LeConte 2008 16

November 14, 2008

Mt. LeConte Via Alum Cave Phil’s brother in law, Dale hiked in with us this year.  We hiked up Alum Cave trail.   The weather was cool and foggy. We enjoyed a lot of lodge time and hot chocolate.

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LeConte 2007 7

November 11, 2007

Mt. LeConte Via Alum Cave LeConte Trip with friends that had never been there! The weather was awesome. We hiked Alum Cave in and out. We also spent a lot of time with the Llamas. They are so soft but don’t care much for attention.  And … they bite!

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LeConte 2006 12

November 8, 2006

LeConte Via Rainbow Falls Trail Distance: 5.4 Miles One Way Elevation Gain: 1685 Feet Starting from Light 8 in Gatlinburg, turn onto Historic Nature Trail / Airport Road. After driving 0.7 miles veer right onto Cherokee Orchard Road, upon which you’ll enter into Great Smoky Mountain National Park. After driving another 2.2 miles you’ll enter the one-way Cherokee Orchard Loop …

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LeConte 2004 07

November 13, 2004

Mt. LeConte, Tennessee We hiked Alum Cave in and out.  My brother and his wife went with us and it was the first time we have ever taken a trip together. Phil had to sit on an inverted bucket the whole time, and he didn’t like that. I thought it was funny. Anyway.  It was totally awesome.

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Sam Knob Trail

Art Loeb – Flat Laurel Creek

Distance: 6.2 Miles RT Elevation Change: 1194 feet Difficulty: Moderate We park in the grass on the side of the parkway at the intersection of the Art Loeb Trail between the turn off to Black Balsam and the Devil’s Courthouse at approximately mile marker 421.3. Go north on the Art Loeb. The trail accents immediately from the parkway rising over 400′ …

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Tenant Mtn Phil

Art Loeb Trail – Black Balsam & Tenant Mtn

Distance: 5 miles Elevation Gain: 600 feet Difficulty: Easy to Moderate Our usual plan of attack for this hike is to park in the Ivestor Gap Parking Lot and walk the old roadbed to Ivestor Gap. Next, we hike over the top of Tenant Mountain and then onto Black Balsam and back to the road. There is a 1/4 mile …

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Graveyard Ridge05

Art Loeb: Graveyard Ridge Loop

Distance: 5 miles Elevation Gain: 600 feet Difficulty: Easy to Moderate This section of the Art Loeb Trail begins on the right of F.R. 816 at the Black Balsam parking area 0.8 mile north of the Blue Ridge Parkway. For the first 10 yards, the Mountains to the Sea Trail shares the same trail before it descends to the right. …

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Indian Gap

AT: Newfound Gap to Indian Gap

Distance Hiked: 3.4 miles Round Trip Elevation Gain: 735 ft. The Appalachian Trail crosses the Smoky Mountain Parkway at Newfound Gap. Leaving the gap and hiking north on the AT takes you to the junction of the Boulevard Trail up Mt. LeConte to the lodge. Phil and I have taken this trail more times than I can count. This day, …

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Avery Creek Loop

Avery Creek Loop

Pressley Cove : 1.1 FR #5098: .2 Black Mountain: 5.1 Buckwheat Knob:  1.5 Bennett Gap: 2.9 Total Distance 10.8 miles (per map) Total Elevation Gain: 3162′ This is a very hard hike.  What makes it hard is the elevation gain … going down hill … and having to re-climb the same 500 feet … over and over. In my opinion, it …

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Black Mountain Trail

Black Mountain Trail

Distance: 7.8 miles one way Elevation Change: 2125 feet Difficulty: Strenuous! The trailhead is located at a small parking lot next to the Pisgah Forest Ranger Station on US 276, 1.4 miles north of the junction with Hwy 280. Begin walking on the gravel road beside the fence past the sign for the trailhead for 0.2 miles where Black Mountain …

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IMG 3369

Blue Ridge Parkway: Wagon Rd Gap to Pisgah Inn

In the winter, the park service doesn’t spend the money to plow the snow and melt ice on the Blue Ridge Parkway. They close the gates to all automobile traffic. We access the parkway off Highway 276 15 miles north of Brevard at Wagon Road Gap and park at the parking lot at the top of the entrance ramp. The …

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Pisgah Inn Hitching Post

Buck Springs Trail

This trail travels from the back of the Pisgah Inn down to Hw6 276 just above the pink beds (1.5 miles from the Cradle of Forestry). The entire trail is listed as 6.2 miles one way. Distance: 6.2 Miles One Way Total Elevation Gain: 1800′ (Elevation Change: 1100′) We have never done the entire trail. However, it is a very …

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Buckhorngap Square Twin2

Buckhorn Gap

Distance: 3.0 miles to Buckhorn Gap Shelter (6 miles RT) Elevation Gain: 1100 feet Difficulty:  Moderate Trail Information Buckhorn Gap Trailhead lies just 2.6 miles off Hwy 276 on Avery Creek Rd. The road is narrow and there is only room for 4 or 5 cars to park. The trail descends about 50 or 60 feet in elevation and follows …

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Cedar Rock

Cat Gap Loop

Distance: 4.8 Miles RT Elevation Gain: 1050′ Difficulty: Easy BYPASS TRAIL Distance: 4.1 miles Elevation Gain: 784′ Difficulty: Moderate This is actually an easy and quick way to get over 1 thousand feet of vertical. The trailhead begins at the fish hatchery near Brevard, NC. Many campsites are virtually within a few feet of the trail and some are very …

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Cedarrock05

Cedar Rock Summit

Distance: 7.1 Miles RT Elevation Gain: 1844′ Difficulty: Strenuous Park in the Hatchery Parking Lot and begin the Cat Gap Loop trail hiking counter clockwise. You will walk past Picklesimer Fields. Continue on this trail bearing right toward Cat Gap at the intersection of the shortcut cut-off trail.  When you get to Cat Gap, turn sharply to the right on the …

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DSC 0047

Chimney Rock State Park

Total Distance: 4.7 Miles RT Total Elevation Gain: 1329′ Trails Four Seasons Trail: 1.54 Miles Round Trip Woodland Trail from lower parking lot to main parking lot – Elevation Gain: 354′ Hickory Nut Falls Trail: 2.06 Miles Round Trip Branches off Four Seasons Trail to bottom of 400′ waterfall – Elevation Gain: 417′ Visitor’s Parking Lot to Exclamation Point: 1.1 Miles RT – Elevation …

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The College M

College “M”

Distance: 2.9 Miles RT Elevation Gain: 843 ‘ Difficulty: Moderate The College “M” trail is a short but steep hike almost within the city limits of Bozeman. It starts at the nose of the Bridger Mountains. It climbs up the first peak to an area where Montana State University students have constructed a large “M” that can be seen for …

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Fork Of Loop

Coon Tree Loop

3.9 miles 1033′ Elevation Gain Difficulty: Moderate Phil and I have been driving by the Coon Tree Picnic area on Hwy 276 for over 40 years! It is only this year (2013) that we have become interested in hiking around this area. The Coon Tree Picnic area has a nice safe parking lot next to bathrooms with flushing toilets. It …

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"If you don’t know where you are going, you might wind up someplace else." --- Yogi Berra