Slickrock Creek - Joyce Kilmer Wilderness

  • July 12, 2013 · 5:30 PM
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After consulting two of my trail gurus, here's the plan:  We will hike the Slickrock Creek Trail (13.3 miles) on Friday night and Saturday.  It includes 12 creek fords and the "Ball Buster" 2,000+ climb at the end.  Be prepared to wade through deep water up to your crotch.  We'll camp at Naked Ground Gap, which will be the highest point of our hike, with good views.

Sunday we'll take the 4.5 mile Naked Ground Trail down to the Joyce Kilmer National Recreation Trail, where we'll have a half-mile road walk to vehicles.

I plan to walk right through the fords and not change into dry shoes and socks until after the last one at the 8-mile mark.  Also, we'll have to make our way around several big blow-downs (fallen trees) on the "Ball Buster" climb.  Finally, be prepared to do some briar-cutting if a trail is over-grown (lightweight handheld pruning clippers are just the thing).

We'll drive over Friday evening to park just off U.S. Hwy 129 near the Cheoah Dam, then night-hike .6 miles to a trail campsite at Ike Creek.  One or two folks have said they plan to drive over early.  I'll be coming from South Carolina (visiting family just out of hospital) and hope to stage one or two vehicles at the end point near Rattler Ford, then drive down to the start point.

Cynthia or I will be posting a place and time for those meeting Friday afternoon in Nashville to meet at.

Besides preparing to be wet, I also recommend you treat your clothing and gear for ticks (I use Permethrin) or bring something to spray yourself for ticks and mosquitoes.

It'll be an adventure and a great hike!

Raymond

 

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  • Cynthia O.

    It was so much fun!

    July 22, 2013

  • Raymond M.

    Remote, rugged, ... really fun!

    July 15, 2013

  • Tipi W.

    I'm anticipating a full report with pics of your Slickrock Creek hike from the bottom to the top! I wish I could be with you guys just to see the look on your faces as you climb the Nutbuster. Oh well, maybe next time.

    July 13, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I just hiked the BMT through the wilderness last weekend starting from the Cherohala Skyway to Deals Gap, but missed a turn at one of my trail intersections, which resulted in me hiking the bottom section Slickrock Creek Trail downstream from where it intersects the Benton Mackaye trail and the little Slickrock creek. We did this on a very rainy weekend, and after a long record breaking rainy week. The stream never got above my mid thigh level. David L. was with me on this hike and he's signed up to go with you. The section we hiked was very over grown and the trail is hard to follow at times. But the stream will always get you back on track.

    July 11, 2013

    • Raymond M.

      Thanks for the report, Jim! I know Tipi Walter did some trail clearing last week along the stream, but above where you got on. Glad to hear about the fords!

      July 11, 2013

  • Karyn

    Paulo and I are planning to make it a longer trip. We. May leave the extra clothes and food in the car though in case rides are needed for the shuttle.

    July 10, 2013

  • Raymond M.

    Brian, I still need your contact info and to speak with you ASAP. Otherwise, I'll have to remove you from the sign-up list before I leave town Thursday morning. Though you can sign up again should you wish, once you speak with me and give me your contact info. Raymond

    July 10, 2013

  • Raymond M.

    Karyn, Paulo, and Brian, please send me your email addresses and cell phone numbers ASAP. Thanks! Rain Man

    July 8, 2013

  • Randy

    There are some good Brier patches on South Fork. Someone had flagged as a hazard the last time I was though there.

    July 3, 2013

    • Raymond M.

      Yep, with did the South Fork two weekends ago. Good think Tipi Walter knew to bring his pruning shears, else we would have had a tough time making it through the briars and vines. As it was, no problem, just slow.

      July 3, 2013

    • Randy

      He has pruned up many trails around there. He is a hiking Legend. I wished I could have gone last weekend as it would have been my fourth meeting with him. And I would have given him a sweet hug. He has been a great inspiration in my life.

      July 4, 2013

  • Randy

    Come to think of it, Slickrock creek and Deep creek was a mess too. Guess I better get my pruners sharpened up!

    July 3, 2013

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