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Honey Creek Loop - strenuous day hike at Big South Fork - top rated!

Read this entire description before RSVPing.

HIKE STATS:
7:00 a.m. Central Time Meeting Place: Kroger Hermitage (Old Hickory Blvd. near I-40)
9:15 a.m. Central Time Meeting Place: Burnett's Grocery, 1900 Michigan Ave, Allardt, TN 38504
Hike Distance: 5.5 miles
Estimated Hike Time: 4 hours
Difficulty: Moderately Strenuous
Hike Leader: Jim Meeks
No dogs please, due to the climbing and ladders involved

This challenging hike is over rugged lands and includes several creek crossings, climbing over boulders, and hiking steep terrain. The rewards are great views, waterfalls, beautiful land, and caves. Bring water, snacks, appropriate hiking attire, and your camera.

Do not attempt this hike if you have not completed at least a six mile strenuous hike before. Also, this is a very wet hike. Do not attempt if you can't handle slick rocks and many wet crossings.

Carpool 1: Meet at Kroger Hermitage at 7:00 AM and carpool from there.
Carpool 2: Meet at Burnett's Grocery in Allardt at 9:15 AM and carpool from there

Optional: Camp at Big South Fork's Bandy Loop Campground Saturday night and meet everyone at Burnett's for the hike. You must make your own campsite reservations here: http://1.usa.gov/1oiPJI5

Please offer your driver gas money. It's easy to get lost heading to this hike so please don't offer to drive if you're directionally challenged.

Honey Creek
Zenith Rd
Allardt, TN 38504

Optional, 1.5 mile hike at Colditz Cove State Natural Area afterward.


Directions to Honey Creek

* Take I-40 East to Exit 300 - Monterey.
* Turn Left at the end of the exit ramp.
* At the second traffic light (just past the old Imperial Hotel), turn Right onto TN 62.
* Drive 16 miles until TN 62 intersects US 127 at Clarkrange. There will be a traffic light with an Exxon on your left and a Citgo on the opposite, diagonal corner.
***These are about the best bathroom stops until Honey Creek. ***
* Turn Left onto US 127 headed north towards Jamestown. Set your odometer to zero.
* At 15.1 miles from the TN 62 and US 127 intersection, turn Right onto East 296 towards Allardt. Start watching for this turn when you pass the Highland Manor Winery on your right and the Jordan Motel on your left. There is a Tru-Test gasoline station just past the turn. Reset your odometer to "0".
* Stay on 296. You will come to a 4 way stop in Allardt (there will be a gas station on one corner, and a very small shopping center on the other corner). 
* Stop here at Burnett's Grocery.

* Continue straight onto East 52. Start watching your odometer.
* At 5.6 miles, turn Left at a sign for "Burnt Mill Bridge" onto Mt. Helen Road. Reset your odometer to "0".
* At 5.2 miles turn Left at another "Burnt Mill Bridge" sign onto Old Mt. Helen Rd. (I think this is the turn where the sign was fallen to the ground. Be careful not to miss this turn.) Follow this road until it forks (Right is "paved", Left is crushed limestone gravel road)
* At this fork there is yet another "Burnt Mill Bridge" sign pointing left to the gravel road. Keep following the signs to Burnt Mill Bridge.
* Follow this road until it forks, you see a sign directing you to turn Left for Honey Creek.
* Park at the first parking area on your left near the large trailhead sign. Do not go to the overlook parking area.

Tips for successfully finding Honey Creek:
1) Do not speed on TN 62. In Monterey, the speed limit is 30 mph!!
2) When in doubt, follow the signs to Burnt Mill Bridge until you see the Honey Creek sign.
3) If the roads off of East 52 go from bad to worse, chances are you are on the right track !!

Join or login to comment.

  • Carl N.

    Hike stats per my GPS:

    Honey Creek Loop
    6.4 miles
    2,400 feet elevation change
    GPS track: https://www.dropbox.com/s/k4olaunk368nd3j/2014-07-13%20-%20TN%20-%20Honey%20Creek%20Loop.gpx

    Colditz Cove
    1.6 miles
    140 feet elevation change
    GPS track: https://www.dropbox.com/s/2h5bgrecuj80op7/2014-07-13%20-%20TN%20-%20Colditz%20Cove%20State%20Natural%20Area.gpx

    Had a great time hiking with everyone!

    2 · July 14, 2014

    • Roseanna

      Thank you Carl. Enjoyed hiking with you and the beef jerky.

      1 · July 14, 2014

    • Carl N.

      You too Rosie, nice meeting you!

      1 · July 14, 2014

  • Amy J.

    Hey AJ we're at Burnett grocery, we're going to wait another 5 then take off!

    July 13, 2014

    • AJ S.

      Sounds like a great day! Hope to try again to check this one off re bucket list.

      July 13, 2014

    • Roseanna

      Aj, sorry you had problems finding us.

      July 13, 2014

  • Michael M.

    Great hike. Definitely should be on everyone's bucket list.

    2 · July 13, 2014

  • Natalie

    Fantabulous! ;)

    1 · July 13, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    Great interesting hike with lots if variation and great people. Thanks Jim!

    2 · July 13, 2014

  • AJ S.

    Hey just saw Lisa's note about the time change so are we meeting at Allart carpool at 9:15 Nashville time? That would be 10:15 there...

    July 12, 2014

    • Jim M.

      No its central time there also. But the timeline is so close, your phone may read the incorrect time.

      July 13, 2014

  • Natalie

    We are here in a gold ford focus! :)

    1 · July 13, 2014

  • donna

    Hey, yes we are meeting at central or nashville time. The line goes right through big south fork so part of it is central and part eastern. Even before you get to eastern time zone your phone might start bouncing off an eastern time zone tower.

    July 13, 2014

  • Roseanna

    I don't remember there being a time change

    July 12, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    Apparently there's a time zone change! We are on our way from the campsite to the restaurant thinking it is 6:30 but I see that here it is 7:30. See ya in about 15 minutes

    July 12, 2014

  • Jim M.

    Hey everyone, I have Drill Saturday with my Army National Guard Unit in Jamestown TN, and this is why I'll already be in the local area for our hike. I'll be at the campground probably by 4 PM on Saturday, and will leave for our dinner at Bacara's around 6:30 PM. Then on Sunday morning I'll meet everyone gathering at the Allardt carpool location at 9:15 AM.

    1 · July 11, 2014

    • AJ S.

      Jim-I'm sorry to bail on the restaurant but we won't be coming up to camp tonight after all. Thank you for the invitation though. See you on the hike!

      July 12, 2014

    • Jim M.

      Awe, bummer.

      July 12, 2014

  • AJ S.

    Does anyone tale have a teenager going? Just FYI ?

    July 11, 2014

    • Jim M.

      Not to worry, a teenager will enjoy this trip just like everyone else. It's a really fun hike to go on, and the campground we're staying at is very nice.

      July 11, 2014

  • AJ S.

    Sounds really good! Please add me as a tentative. I will know tomorrow if I'll be camping Saturday night or not.

    1 · July 11, 2014

    • AJ S.

      Add one more for my daughter. Is this place pricy?

      July 11, 2014

    • Jim M.

      I will add another to the reservations. They've got pricey meals and they've got regular priced meal. Their menu selection is very impressive, yet they also have traditional selections. They only take check or cash, and I would say $30 a person will cover anything on the menu you'd want. They don't serve alcohol beverages, but allow you to bring your own if you want. I suggest bringing the checkbook just to make things easy for yourself.

      July 11, 2014

  • AJ S.

    Stupid auto correct - have a teenager going?

    July 11, 2014

  • AJ S.

    Does anyone takes

    July 11, 2014

  • AJ S.

    Im

    July 11, 2014

  • donna

    Carl I will get a jr. ranger booklet for your son if there is one available. Donna

    1 · July 11, 2014

    • Carl N.

      Thank you very much Donna!

      July 11, 2014

  • Jim M.

    I have Donna and Randy joining me so far for dinner on Saturday night, is there any other campers wanting to join us? It's an awesome place with great food.

    July 10, 2014

    • A former member
      A former member

      If it's not too late my husband and I would like to join you. Crazy day at work ..sorry for the late response.

      July 11, 2014

    • Jim M.

      No problem, I will add the 2 of you. I got 5 going and one other tentative right now, so I'll make the reservation for 6, and if more join us, I can add more.

      July 11, 2014

  • Carl N.

    Would someone who's camping be able to stop at Bandy Creek Visitor Center and grab a Junior Ranger book? My younger son wanted me to bring one back, and I wasn't sure I had time to go up there. Thanks!

    Looking forward to the trail, it's been many years since I've done it and I remember it as one of my favorites! We're planning to meet the group at Allardt.

    July 11, 2014

  • Jim M.

    I will already be in the Big South Fork area for the weekend, and I'll be camping at Bandy Creek Campground Saturday night in the tent camping area "A" if anyone is interested in camping the night before. Also Saturday evening at 7 PM I'm going to Bacara's Family Restaurant for dinner if anyone is interested in a great dinning experience. Bacara's is a German restaurant that's only 12 miles away from the campground, and is a cash or check only business. Reservations are also required for dinner, and I must know if you're joining me before Friday.

    July 8, 2014

    • Randy

      cool man I 'll get one close thanks

      July 9, 2014

    • Randy

      I'll be in 18 right across from ya

      July 9, 2014

  • Jim M.

    Hey everyone.
    Kelly has added a really nice addition to our day of hiking. After completing our hike of the Honey Creek Loop and on our way back to Nashville, we'll visit Colditz Cove State Natural Area and check out Northrup Falls. It's just outside the town of Allardt, and is literally on our way back home. It's a very beautiful waterfall that drops 60 foot, and the trail is an easy 1-1/2 miles round trip to see it.
    We'll all meet at the trailhead parking area for this hike, after allowing everyone ample time to drive there from Honey Creek, and possibly stopping for refreshments or a potty break.
    I looking forward to this nice addition, it's a new one for me!

    1 · July 9, 2014

  • Kelly S.

    Quick, friendly reminder: no dogs on this trip.

    July 9, 2014

  • Kelly S.

    Link to make campsite reservations: http://1.usa.gov/1oiPJI5

    July 9, 2014

  • AJ S.

    What have you reserved? Can I throw in with a tent?

    July 9, 2014

    • Jim M.

      I made my reservations for site #A17. There should be room for another tent and vehicle on my site and you're welcome to share it with me.

      July 9, 2014

  • A former member
    A former member

    I have made reservations at the Bandy Creek Campground for Saturday night as well. We aren't sure about dinner yet but will let you know before Friday. Looking forward to meeting you all!

    July 8, 2014

    • Jim M.

      My reservations are for campsite#A17. I don't know if you want to be close as a group, but if so, I'm sure you could change your reservations to a site next to mine.

      July 9, 2014

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