Cherokee Hiking Club
198 Crews Drive, Benton, TN 37307
Welcome to the website for the Cherokee Hiking
Club. Our club sponsors frequent hikes and occasional backpacking trips into the
areas of southeast Tennessee, northern Georgia, and southwestern North Carolina
the former homeland of the Cherokee Indian Nation. If you are an avid hiker and
live in this area, consider joining us on our hikes. You may join for $15 by
filling out the application and mailing it to the address above. You may want to
attend a hike or two before deciding to join, but once you start coming, you
almost certainly will continue and will want to join. Below is a list of
upcoming hikes. We ask that you contact the person in charge of the hike by email
or phone a few days in advance to allow us to appropriately plan shuttles and to
give you the most up-to-date plans for the hike. If you prefer shorter
hikes on weekdays, you might check out the Sequoyah Hiking Club at
centered around Madisonville. Also, you might check out the Hiwassee Hiking
Club, centered around Etowah at
www.HiwasseeHikingClub.org. When deciding on a hike to take, please
refer to our
trail difficulty rating system.
Response needed Christmas Party
The annual Cherokee Hiking Club Christmas Party will be held at the Benton Station Baptist Church at 909 Benton Station Road in Benton, Tennessee, beginning at 6:00 pm on Friday, November 9th. The meal will be catered by the Dam Deli with turkey or ham, vegetables, dressing and trimmings, drinks, and desert. The Club will cover the first $10 of the cost per person, leaving each member an additional $5 to cover the cost. The party is open to club members and each club member can bring a full paying guest. After the meal and installation of officers, we will have an exchange of gifts via Dirty Santa, with a suggested minimum of $10 per gift per person.
This would be a time for members to pay dues for the upcoming year, so please plan to write a check for the proper amount, including the $5 per person for the meal. Checks are preferred to help make it easier for the collection of money, without the need for change. Dues continue to be $15 per family or individual, so a family of 2 would be $25.
Please respond to Leon Bates (256-710-5508) or Lpbates1964@gmail.com by December 5th so we can make final arrangements with the Deli.
Winter Hike Week in the Smokies
January 19-22, 2017, Sponsored by SEFTC
Many of you have in past years enjoyed the winter hiking experience during Wilderness Wildlife Week in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The tradition continues. Under the auspices of the Southeastern Foot Trails Coalition (SEFTC), the second annual Winter Hike Week will be held January 19-22 in Pigeon Forge, TN.
Several hikes ranging from easy to strenuous will be held each day, beginning on Thursday, the 19th, and concluding on Sunday, the 22nd. Participants are urged to arrive on Wednesday afternoon, if possible, to take advantage of the full hike schedule. All hikes will be led by hike leaders familiar with the GSMNP trails. There is a $25 charge by SEFTC for the event, whether you are there one day or all days. This goes to fund SEFTC's hiking and foot trails program. The SEFTC will hold its annual meeting for SEFTC board members and leadership council members on Saturday. For those not participating in that meeting, a full hiking schedule is provided Saturday.
For all the details and to register please go to the Southeastern Foot Trails Coalition website http://www.southeasternfoottrails.org then on the opening page click on the icon in the upper right for the "Winter Hiking Event" to access information and registration.
If winter hiking in the Smokies is new to you, it is actually not that strange. For some it is even the preferred season, with the smallest crowds. Ice and snow is usually not a problem, with significant snow collection mainly at the highest elevations. Usually January hikers can hike most days at lower elevations, where most of our treks occur. Should heavy snows occur, alternative low elevation flatter hikes may be substituted.
SEFTC is planning for well over a hundred people for this event. In 2016 SEFTC held this event successfully for the first time, and plans to make it an annual January occasion.
So make your special winter hiking plans now for the January 2017 SEFTC Winter Hike Week in America's most visited national park by going to the SEFTC website and registering and reserving your inn or hotel room as instructed there.
Warriors Passage National Recreation Trail - A Short History
This trail from Waucheesi Bald to Old Furnace Road, was build by Boy Scouts from Knoxville back in the 60s. The trail was popular for hikes and backpacks in the couple of decades afterwards as Scouts hiked and backpacked the trail and earned patches. Then wild fires destroyed much of the route of the trail and the trail fell into disuse. The trail was rehabed and reopened about 8 years ago, in part by members of our club, and now the Scouts are interested in reopening the trail to Scout Troops for hiking and backpacking. We are supporting the Scouts in this endeavor. Soon Scout Troops will be able to again hike and backback this trail and earn a patch while learning the extensive history of the region. The Scout Troops will register for their adventures through our help. We will be working with Scout Troops in repairing the tread in some areas along the trail and possibly building some much needed reroutes in the future years. Follow the link and read the history of the trail as written by Jim Wright, one of the original organizers of the trail back in the 60s. He is now in his 70s and still helping in this endeavor.
For more information on the Warriors Passage Trail or to sign up your Scout Unit or other Youth Organization to hike or backpack the trail, or to order patches, go to www.warriorspassage.org
Direct Link to Cherokee
Hiking Club events for this year
Printable Hike Schedule for 2016
Cherokee Hiking Club Continuous Loop Presentation
Warning -- huge 18 MB PowerPoint file