The Unicoi Crest above Tellico Plains


Cherokee Hiking Club




Bald River Falls


Cherokee Hiking Club Calendar




Hike Difficulty Rating Scale (per Chattanooga Hiking Club)
Archive of past calendars 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012

Check out the Sequoyah Hiking Club and the Hiwassee Hiking Club Activities


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Tennessee Wild Hike/Backpack Schedule
Benton MacKaye Trail Assn Hike Schedule



January 20, 2012 - Annual Calendar Planning Meeting - We will meet at 2:00 p.m. at the Family Resource Agency conference room located at 3680 Michigan Avenue Road in Cleveland. James Anderson will host the meeting. Hike leaders, please make plans to attend if possible. If you cannot attend the hike planning meeting, please submit the hikes you will be willing to lead to Richard Foster, our secretary, via email to prior to the meeting.  Include the date of your hike along with an alternate date if you can.  Also, if you can host a monthly meeting during 2013, but can’t attend the planning meeting, please email Richard your intentions. Please see newsletter for directions.

Saturday 1/26/2013 – Bike ride on the Cherohala Skyway, TN side - Intermediate rating, 17 miles one way. Leader: Richard Foster. This event will be on a roadway, so it is advised to use a road or hybrid bike. Meet at 9:00 a.m. at the Cherohala Visitor’s Center. Contact Richard Foster at 442-2849, 536-8353 or if you are interested.


Saturday, February 2, 2013 - 0swald Dome Hike - 8 miles strenuous, contact Randy Morris 423-650-0485. Joint hike with the Soddy Daisy Chapter of TN Trails Association.

Saturday, February 9, 2013 - Bald River Trail

Description: This is perhaps the most beautiful stretch of trail in the Tellico Ranger District of the Cherokee National Forest. We will start the hike at the Bald River Falls Parking Area and use the new steps built this past fall by the USFS. We will be going by several lesser falls and rapids as we ascend up the Bald River trail through the Bald River Wilderness. Those who want to go only part way can turn around at any point. Those who plan to go all the way will eat lunch at the last major waterfall about a half mile before reaching Bald River Road, then will hike on up to the Bald River Road, then return the same way they came in to the Bald River Falls Parking Area. Bring plenty of water and a lunch and warm clothes. Afterwards, we might eat in Tellico Plains at the Tellicafe, for those so inclined. Map to Tellicafe is here.
Contact Rick or Brenda Harris to signup by phone (423-253-6358) or email ( or on the Meetup page or on our Facebook page.
Meet at Cherohala Skyway Visitor Center 10 AM in Tellico Plains. For a map, click here
We will carpool to the Bald River Falls Parking Area
Length - 10 miles out and back, or some may decide to shorten their hike by going in part way then coming back out. For a map and a description of the trail, click here.
Leaders: Rick & Brenda Harris
Difficulty Level: moderate, trail is rocky in places but no long steep climbs.
Dogs are welcome if on a leash and well behaved.
Limit only 12 people due to being in designated wilderness, so sign up early.

Saturday, 16 February - Fall Creek Falls hike with the TN Conservationist, David Lincicome. Hike leader: David Lincicome with the TN Conservationists; rating: easy; length: 2-3 miles. Meet at 10 a.m. Central Time at the Fall Creek State Park Nature Center. Call David Lincicome at 615-532-0439 or email him at for more info. Please let David know you are going by Feb 14.

Please note that this event will start at 11 AM Eastern time (10 AM Central time). This will be a short 2-3 mile hike on a trail at Fall Creek Falls State Park with naturalist David Lincicome. David is the Natural Heritage Program Manager for TDEC (TN Dept Environment & Conservation), the organization which runs our state parks and state natural areas. Meet at the Nature Center in the park at 10 AM. Please let David know if you are going by replying on this Meetup page or contacting David directly by Feb. 14th at (615) 532-0439 or

Come out on a brisk winter Saturday to hike Cane Creek Gorge Overlook Trail and Woodland Trail to create a loop. Hikers will see Cane Creek Falls, Fall Creek Falls and overlooks of Cane Creek Gorge – 2 miles. Alternate trail will be Paw Paw Loop Trail which includes the overlooks of Cane Creek Falls, Fall Creek Falls and Cane Creek Gorge – 3 miles. We will decide on which trail based on the group and weather. Dress warmly in layers, wear sturdy boots, and bring plenty of water and lunch or a snack. This trip will be limited to 20 guests. For more information, including descriptions, directions, and maps, about this as well as any other State Natural Area, visit the Division of Natural Areas web site at: ttp:// For information on lodging or camping at Fall Creek Falls, visit

Thursday, February 21, 2013 - Monthly Club Meeting, Royal Buffet in Cleveland, 6PM

Saturday 23 February - Tallassee Mountain from Farr Gap to over Chilhowee Lake, moderate to strenuous, 11 mile round trip from Farr Gap, an expedition on recently public land. Meet at the Tellico Plains Cherohala visitor center by 9AM or Farr Gap by 10. If coming, contact Rick Foster by 6PM Friday 15 January: (423) 442[dash]2849, habitathound[at]gmail[dot]com.

Tallassee Mountain from Farr Gap to over Chilhowee Lake, moderate to strenuous, 11 mile round trip from Farr Gap, an expedition on recently public land. Meet at 9:00 a.m. at the Cherohala Visitor Center. 225 Cherohala Skyway, Tellico Plains, TN. Additional meeting place & time: 10 (maybe 10:15) at Farr Gap. Hike time 5 to 7 hours. Rating: uneven, mostly on old roadbeds, not maintained trails, strenuous for short stretches, moderate to difficult overall with water crossings too shallow or narrow to need wading. Bring food, water, appropriate bear seasoning, flashlight and wear orange because hog hunting is now legal all year. The hike may be extended if the group is particularly fast & ambitious.
Post Mtg Report: Three people came to the aptly named Farr Gap for the hike onto Tallassee Mountain above the Little Tennessee River.  We had our heads in the clouds most of the time, eventually getting below them for a view of Chilhowee Lake.  While pleasantly warm, the weather lent an otherworldly effect to the hike. We traveled east on the Benton MacKaye Trail to Little Slickrock Creek, then crossed the creek to head northeast.  That old roadbed around Stiffknee Top is littered with deadfalls, so our return trip was over the Top. The route improved on Tallassee Mountain and we made a loop around its north end above the cliffs. The weather was perfect for this hike: mild temperatures and slightly overcast. The three hikers included Club members Richard Foster (hike leader) and Jennifer Schroll, and guest Bill Edmondson.


Thursday, March 14 - Club Meeting - Monterrey Mexican Restaurant, 3055 Keith Street, NW, Cleveland, TN - 6PM. All are welcome whether you are a member or not.

Saturday, March 16 - Flats Mountain Hike - 6.1 miles, moderate. Rick & Brenda Harris, 423-253-6358 or

Saturday 30 March - University of the South Spring Hike - 5-6 miles - moderately strenuous - We will hike a portion of the Perimeter Trail through beautiful Shakerag Hollow (one of the best wildflower hikes in the Southeast),  the spur trail out to Piney Point and complete a loop just off the newly reconstructed golf course—taking advantage of the views from Green’s View and Beckwith Point.  Most of this hike is fairly easy, but we will have a short steep climb out of a gorge and some other up and down segments—after all we will be just off the edge of the western side of Monteagle Mountain on the beautiful campus of the University of the South at Sewanee. Also, portions are very rocky, so good hiking boots are recommended. Hopefully, we will catch the wildflowers in spectacular form, but unfortunately I have a knack of miss-timing wildflowers. Please call Randy Morris at 423-650-0485 no later than 8 p.m. Friday, March 29 for meeting time and place.


Saturday 6 April, Lula Lake Land Trust - Hike leader: Ann Grey; rating: easy to moderate; length: 3 miles

Thursday 11 April – April club meeting/annual joint meeting with the Hiwassee Hiking Club. This meeting has usually taken place at the United Methodist Church in Etowah. This year it will have to be held in an alternate location; Gee Creek has been suggested. This is near the Ocoee/Hiwassee State Park. Jennifer Schroll will follow up on this.

Saturday 13 April - John Muir cleanup - Meet at 9AM, Childers Creek parking lot. Hike leader: Debbie Flower; rating: easy; length: 3 miles one way or 6 miles round trip, depending on car shuttle.

Saturday 20 April - Starr Mountain - Hike leader: James Anderson, rating: moderate, length: 6 miles. This hike could take place on either 4/23 or 4/24, Sunday.

Tuesday 23 April to Sunday 27 April - Wildflower Pilgrimage in the Gatlinburg; several hikes offered. Club member/VP Leon Bates will lead several of the hikes


5/? - Scenic Spur Trail Hike - Jane Bohannon or Rick Harris or Clayton Pannell could lead?

Thursday, May 9 - Club Meeting - at home of member James Anderson. Pot luck at 6 PM. See newletter for directions to his house.


Saturday, June 1 - Trails Day Project - Reconstruction of the John Muir Trail (Coker Creek to TN68) -


Some of you have already been contacted by Jeff Hunter of Tennessee Wild so please accept my apology for the duplication, in advance. Jeff Hunter is working with the Ocoee-Hiwassee District to hold a National Trails Event on our District this year. As I have been working on tread restoration of the John Muir Trail, he has agreed to support my efforts to repair and revitalize this trail since it is a National Recreation Trail and it has a direct historic connection to the famous naturalist, John Muir. We are recruiting people who are willing to do reconstruction work; basically use of pulaskis to dig and rakes to level and smooth tread. We also need a cadre of experienced trail construction leaders to help provide guidance for new volunteers. Truly, it will be very hard to be successful without experienced trail maintainers to provide support to new maintenance crewmembers. Meet at 9 AM at the campsite down by the Hiwassee River and Coker Creek at 9 AM. See Meetup page for map ( or at the Ocoee-Hiwassee Ranger Station (8 AM). Also, for those vols who want to participate but don’t do reconstruction work, we could still use some support doing some clearing/brushing work from the Hwy 68 side. What I need from everyone is idea of who wants to participate and what category of work they would like to perform (reconstruction or brushing/clearing). I need to get an idea of how many people will help out in order to have enough tools, safety gear, water, etc for the day.

Please contact Jeff Hunter at the following: C - 423-322-7866!/Tennessee_Wild


Steve Biatowas @ or (423)338-3328 M-TH 0700-1730

Thanks for your support. Hope to see you out on the trails.


Saturday, June 8 - Dayhike to Gregory Bald in the Smokies- go to for information and to sign up for the hike, or contact Rick Harris at or 423-253-6358 home, 513-260-1184 cell. 11.3 miles, 3000 foot elevation rise, rated difficult, but beautiful and well worth the pain.

Saturday 22 June - Coker Creek gold panning and hiking - Hike leader: James Anderson. Event could also include gold panning as well as hiking.


July some time - Canoe Trip - Clayton Pannell

Thursday, July 11 - Club Meeting, 6 PM, The Tellico Outpost in Tellico Plains (next to the Exxon Station). Pizza, beer and lots of other offerings.

Fri-Sun, July 12-14 - Trail Dames Summit - Maryville College -

Women gather to celebrate hiking, backpacking and the love of the outdoors
Come join women for the third annual Summit: A Hiking and Backpacking Conference for Women!
One of the wonderful things about hiking these days is the abundance of women in the outdoors. Of course, women on the trail are nothing new. For decades now, we have been out enjoying the beauty, energy and camaraderie of the trail. However, it seems that the last few years have brought about a surge in the number of ladies out there. And we aren’t the only ones that have noticed it. Outdoor retailers have gone out of their way to create equipment just for us and clubs, organizations and outlets for women’s hiking are springing up everywhere.
One of the most exciting aspects of this trend is the upcoming Summit-a hiking and backpacking conference for women. Or the last two years, the Trail Dames have hosted the Summit, billing it as the nation’s first hiking and backpacking conference for women. It has been a grand success and this year the Summit is coming to Maryville, Tennessee.
The Summit is an opportunity for all women to come together and learn, dream and share the beauty of the outdoors. For three days, Maryville College will play home to seminars, demonstrations, classes and special guest speakers, all designed to celebrate women on the trails.
The conference will feature guest speaker Sanne Larsen Bagby, aka ‘Ready”, a triple crowner with more than 10,000 miles of backpacking to her name. The conference will also include an extensive list of seminars, classes and workshops. A Hikers Fair with gear demonstrations will be open for the duration of the Summit, as well.
“Meditation Hikes”, “Lightweight Backpacking”, “Outdoor Photography”, “Hiking the El Camino” and “Women’s Nutrition for Hiking” are some of the clinics that will be offered. In addition to the conference, the Maryville area offers a myriad of fabulous things to do from hiking and backpacking to river rafting. It is the gateway to the Great Smoky National Park and you won’t find better views anywhere!
For more information or to register for the Summit, go to



Thursday, August 8 - Club Meeting

Friday, August 9, 2013 - BMTA Work Trip - Dig new trail near Beech Gap Section 17d - We have now moved the bridge over the "Grand Canyon" on the Benton MacKaye Trail to a stable position between Beech Gap and the Unicoi Crest Overlook along the Cherohala Skyway. It is now 50 feet or so downhill from the old position. We now need to dig about a tenth of a mile of new sidehill tread to access the new bridge. So we will need people to work with pulaskis, hoes, and picks as well as fire rakes, McLeods, loppers and chain saws. Meet us at the Unicoi Crest Overlook on the Skyway, which is about 0.25 miles into North Carolina from the TN/NC state line, at 9 AM. If you arrive late, just hike north on the BMT toward Beech Gap and you will find us. It is only a short hike into where we will be doing the work. Lunch will be provided by the BMTA. It does not matter what your level of experience is, we can use you. And you can learn how new trail is built and how much effort it takes to make good trail. Bring gloves, helmet, eye protection if you have them and wear long pants. Bring plenty of water as well. And insect repellent and suntan lotion might be good to have. If you have questions, contact Rick Harris at 423-253-6358 (home) or 513-260-1184 (cell) or


Thursday, September 12 - Club Meeting - Golden Corral, Cleveland, TN - 6:30-8:30 PM. Newcomers welcome.

Saturday, September 21  - Beech Bottom Falls Hike, Jack's River Wilderness - Hike leaders: James Anderson; rating: moderate; length: 8 miles round trip. This hike is being cancelled due to the 80% chance of rain, but will be rescheduled in a month or so. Sorry for the inconvenience for those really looking forward to the trip. This is a great hike. Hope you all can make the hike when it gets rescheduled.

This hike will go along the Jacks River to Beech Bottoms Falls.  It will be an easy to moderate 8 mile hike to a lovely double-layer waterfall on the Jacks River.  (That's 4 miles in and 4 miles back out.)  There are a couple of small creek crossings, but unless it has really rained a lot just before the hike they should not be anything at all.  Since this is a relatively short hike I won't be starting really early.  I'm thinking we will probably leave Cleveland around 9:00 a.m.  

If you are interested call me at 423-715-8824 or contact me on the CHC Meetup page at  before 7:00 p.m. on Friday the 20th.  Be sure and bring lunch as I intend for us to have our lunch with a water view!


Thursday, October 10 - Club Meeting - At the Sugarloaf area near the first Ocoee Dam at 6:00 p.m. This is located near the corner of Highways 314 and 64. It will be a potluck. Sign up at 

October 13-19, 2013 - Fontana Village Fall Hike Week -

This is the 40th Anniversary, so they are expecting a pretty good turnout.  As before, there is an easy and a moderate hike scheduled each day, with Dick Evans leading the moderate hikes.  The dates are October 13 thru 17th for the "official" part, but Dick have scheduled other activities for the early and late comers.  Fontana Village does offer "Hike Week Discounts" for folks staying there, but you do not have to stay there to participate.  As usual, the dates coincide with the start of Bear Hunting Season in North Carolina, and we have decided to avoid the heavily hunted areas, like the Slickrock Wilderness, this year.  Due to a law enforcement action earlier this year, many local hunters have become pretty "anti-hiker", and we want to give those feelings a chance to subside, so avoiding any possible confrontations is the best course.  As usual, we MAY rearrange or reschedule hikes due to weather, so make sure you either contact Dick Evans (828-479-2503) or the Village the night prior to avoid missed connections.  Programs and activities scheduled every evening. The hikes are on our Meetup page ( so you can sign up there. If you want to meet at the actual hike origin point each day, contact Dick Evans in advance to settle on a meeting point and time. Dick is past president of the Benton MacKaye Trail Association and lives near Robbinsville, NC.


Monday 10/14 - Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest & Huckleberry Bald.

Tuesday 10/15 - Visit to Balsalm Mountain Preserve Nature Center and hikes at that location.  Cookout there for the evening.

Wednesday 10/16 - LLewellyn Cove Hike and extended hike up the forest roads in the area.

Thursday 10/17 - Stecoah Gap.  Hike the Appalachian Trail about 3 miles, then return to Stecoah Gap via the old gravel road.

Friday 10/18 - Meet at Mud Gap at 10 AM for a hike to Whigg Meadow.  Bring blaze orange vest or hat.

Saturday 10/19 - Twentymile Loop GSMNP - Meet at the Twentymile Ranger Station Parking Area on NC 28 at 9:00 AM.

Saturday 26 October - Fall John Muir Trail Cleanup - Meet 9AM at Childers Creek parking lot. Hike leader: Clayton Pannell; rating: easy; length; 3 (one way) or 6 (round trip) miles, depending on car shuttle. Contact Clayton Pannell at 423-263-9730 (home) or 423-435-1848 (cell).

Five club members and two guests, including Clayton Pannell (hike leader), Jane Bohannon, Karen Young, Randy Morris, Al Rymer, Ruth Gafford and Bill Aly helped clear debris and trees from the club’s section of the John Muir Trail along the Hiawassee River, in the twice annual cleanup hike.  There were a number of trees, including a couple of large ones that had fallen across the trail.  These were cleared ahead of time by Clayton Pannell and Bill Aly.We met at the Childers Creek parking area, on a cold and clear morning with hopes of it warming up in the day.  We did a car shuttle taking two cars to the Big Bend parking area.  From Childers Creek we started picking up trash and lopping along the trail; we were able to work all the way to Big Bend.  Thanks for the car shuttle and all the work; our section of the trail is in very good shape!


Saturday, November 2  - Jacks River Falls Hike, Beech Bottoms Trail, Jack's River Wilderness - Hike leaders: James Anderson; rating: moderate; length: 8 miles round trip. This hike is rescheduled from the hike which was cancelled Sept 21 due to heavy rains.

This hike will go along the Beech Bottoms Trail to the Jacks River and the Jacks River Falls.  It will be an easy to moderate 8 mile hike to a lovely double-layer waterfall on the Jacks River.  (That's 4 miles in and 4 miles back out.)  There are a couple of small creek crossings, but unless it has really rained a lot just before the hike they should not be anything at all.  Since this is a relatively short hike I won't be starting really early.  I'm thinking we will probably leave Cleveland around 9:00 a.m.  

If you are interested call me at 423-715-8824 or contact me on the CHC Meetup page at before 7:00 p.m. on Friday Nov 1st.  Be sure and bring lunch as I intend for us to have our lunch with a water view!

POST TRIP REPORT: A total of 10 made the 8 mile trek in and out to Beech Bottom Falls.  It was an absolutely perfect day to hike with the colors at their peak.  Several people have been posting a variety of pictures from the hike on the club’s Meetup page at  I hope you have enjoyed those if you have seen them.  Although the road in to the trailhead was a little sketchy and long we all really enjoyed the day. Attendees included club members James Anderson (hike leader), Phyllis Anderson, Randy Morris and Rebecca Levings, and Meetup guests Grady and Dede Townsend, Tim Childers, Rose Hambright, Olga Cinnamon and Betsy Darken.  Below you can see our before and after shot of the hikers.

Thursday, November 14 - Club Meeting

Thurs-Sun, Nov 14-17 - TN Greenways & Trails Mike Riter Course in Trail Maintenance and Construction. If you are interested in attending this 4 day course to be held up near Roan Mountain, contact Rick Harris at  Last year's course was a great success and we have been asked to sponsor this event 4 more times in the future, underwritten by the TN Greenways & Trails Commission. Cost is low due to the high subsidy by the TN G&T Commission, probably will be about $50 for a course which would normally cost $500. Mike Riter is known across the country as the premier trail construction instructor.

Saturday 30 November - Linda Davis Memorial Greenway Hike in Cleveland. Hike leader: Randy Morris; rating: easy to moderate; length: 8 miles. Nearly flat the whole way.

The annual Saturday after Thanksgiving hike will be a roundtrip stroll along the 4 to 4.25 mile Cleveland/Bradley County Greenway—for approximately 8 miles total. This hike, named in honor of long-time hike leader and CHC member Linda Davis, is always the Saturday after Thanksgiving. It is a good way to burn off some of some of the calories that come along with Turkey Day. It will be at least an eight mile roundtrip—8.5 if the new 0.25 northern extension north of Mohawk Drive is complete. It is a great trail along Mouse Creek that is heavily utilized. This Saturday a.m. hike is a good time to enjoy the trail with far less people than usual.

It is a nice walk which we will hopefully enjoy on a beautiful late autumn morning. The trail is rated easy. We will begin at 9 a.m. at a TBA trailhead. Please call Randy Morris at 423-650-0485 no later than 9 p.m. Friday, November 29 if interested in attending for more details. You must call if interested to get specifics so I will know who to contact in the event of a cancellation due to weather. If you only want to do the trail one way, or even just a section, you may work with others to set up a car shuttle, but the hike as led will be a roundtrip affair.

Hike Report:

Linda Davis Memorial Hike—Cleveland Greenway, Saturday Nov. 30

Linda Davis would have thoroughly enjoyed the beautiful day that blessed nine urban hikers on the Cleveland/Bradley County Greenway in the traditional Saturday after Thanksgiving hike. The air was cool and crisp, but the sun and sky were beautiful. Even though this hike was entirely within the Cleveland city limits, we were fortunate to see a magnificent great blue heron, the plentiful mallards and large white ducks that are normal for the south end of the greenway, and several large groups of honking sandhill cranes circling overhead. We added the new section of the greenway to the north of Mohawk Drive to our route for a total distance of approximately 8.2 miles. This section, although small in length, is a good addition as the creek is very nice along the newly concreted path.

Enjoying the hike were James Anderson, Ann Gray, Rick Harris (and trusty sidekick Jake), Becky Levings, Clayton Pannell, Jennifer Schroll, Olga, Rose Hambright, and hike leader Randy Morris.


December 20 - Club Christmas Party - 6 PM - Mountain View Inn

The Bradley Room has been reserved for the annual Christmas party.  The Inn is on the hill at exit 25 off I-75 (used to be a Holiday Inn).  We will have a buffet set up in the room which includes two meats, three vegetables, three salads and desserts.  Cost is $20 per person.  Please bring cash or check to pay Randy since the  Mountain View Inn would like payment by check  for the total.  You  may also want to bring $15 for annual dues for 2014.   A  6-foot table has been requested at the end of the room for installation of officers for 2014.  And a table at the front of the room will be reserved for our dirty Santa gifts $10 limit (remember to bring one gift per person if you want to participate).