2 nights, late afternoon Friday start if memory serves.
This thread has got me considering another round in the Highlands. Have to be on Whitetop in May sometime for the Milky Way...its a close area that is listed as little light pollution.
quick question on this thread - headed there next weekend and was thinking about trying out my christmas hammock for the first time - but had heard reports that not a lot of trees so maybe not the best environment.
Any thoughts on that? We'll be camping off the AT between Rhododendron Gap and the Thomas Knob shelter - supposed to be a number of nice sites in that stretch - and then doing some side hikes to the summit of Mt Rogers and the Thomas Knob shelter.
Plenty of trees. There are some VERY nice camp sites in this area that almost look like they have manicured lawns.
The catch may be that most of the trees in this area are firs so unless someone has cut away the branches (something I'm not going to condone) you can't get to the actual tree trunk to hang from.
Since the branches have been cut away near the camp sites, I don't think you'll have much of an issue.
Once you back away from Mount Rogers some the trees become more diverse and its easier to find a spot.
There's a decent (if somewhat slanted) site on the VA Highlands Horse trail we used last October.
Its located roughly 36.650487,-81.547179
If you take the AT south past the spur to Mt. Rogers for a mile or so you'll come to a bend in the trail where it turns right beside a wire fence with a ladder to climb the fence. Beyond is Brier Ridge bald on the map.
Step outside the fence onto the bald and walk downhill about a 100 yards or so and you'll come across the horse trail. Go back into the woods and you'll find the site on your left ~100 feet in.
I'll be up there sometime next weekend or later as part of my park hopping trip.