Cherokee Hiking Club
198 Crews Drive, Benton, TN 37307
Saturday, March 19, 2011
Brief Description: We beautiful hike takes you up a new natural area through a limestone gorge.
Directions: Please call Jennifer Schroll at her cell number: 423-284-1256. Meet at Home Depot in Cleveland to carpool at 7:30am or meet at the TN hiker trailhead at 9:30am ET. I'd say we will be back by 6pm. I am planning to hike down from the TN trailhead and back up to the AL trailhead then shuttle cars if we have enough cars.
Length: 6 miles, easy
Difficulty Rating: moderate to strenuous
Elevation Gain: Short hike but significant elevation gain on a rocky trail
Hike Leader: Leon Bates and Jennifer Schroll, 423-284-1256
Post-Trip Report: Four members of the Cherokee Hiking Club and 6 Boys Scouts car-pooled to the TN trailhead at The Walls of Jericho. While the AL trailhead parking lot was packed with cars, we were the only ones at the TN parking lot. Just before heading out 2 hikers from the Chattanooga Hiking Club arrived. We all started down the trail together. We saw lots of wild flowers but not any other hikers until we reached the trail junction with the AL trail head. Here it was like jumping on the interstate. We navigated 2 stream crossings with tilted log footbridges. The first one had a handrail and we all successfully made it across. The second log crossing had a rope tied across. I'm not really sure if the rope made it easier or harder. We lost 1 scout. From here we joined the other million hikers headed up Turkey Creek to the Walls of Jericho. The trail ends in the stream channel and everyone must rock hop around (or wear water shoes). The Walls of Jericho is a series of sink holes in the stream channel. At the up stream end the stream flows over a waterfall and into a sinkhole 15-20 below the streambed. The water then runs underground for several yards and reemerges from the side of a large round sinkhole. To me the Walls of Jericho are like things that you see in a cave, but above ground; very cool! We ate lunch here and then began our journey back out via the AL trail head. It is a very steep accent back up to the parking lot (1000 feet in about 2 miles). On the way back we stopped at the Dixie Freeze in South Pittsburg and had ice cream.
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