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  1. #1
    Senior Member headchange4u's Avatar
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    Thumbs up RRG Trip Report June 16-17

    Doctari, his son, Brad, and I went for an overnight at the Red River Gorge. We hiked in on Bison Way Trail and then on to the Sheltowee Trace to an unofficial, unmarked trail known as the Indian Staircase (IS). The IS was supposedly used by the Adena Indians over 1700 years ago and consists of a rock wall with hand and foot indentions scooped out of the rock. When first reading about the area I was skeptical that the IS could be climbed with a pack on but it turned out not to be that difficult of a climb. We actually dropped our packs at the base of the IS, climbed to the top, and then climbed back down, retreived our packs, and climbed back up a second time. Is way fairly easy even for someone like me who is scared of heights.

    The top of IS gave amazing views of the surrounding area. The top was flat and a hammock hangers dream. Lots of perfectly spaced trees and 3-4 established sites with fire rings (that we saw).

    Doctari starting up the staircase:



    Doctari and his son about 3/4 the way up(You can see the hand/foot hold in lower right of pic):


    View from top of IS:


    Shots of our camp:



    We followed the trail to a HUGE rock shelter about .2 of a mile from the top:


    The trail continued on a very narrow path on the surrounding cliffs. It was kinda unnerving to have a shear drop on one side and a rock wall on the other. The trail later connected again with the Sheltowee Trace and we made our way back down from the ridge, passing several cool rock houses, and arches, and a couple of domes. It was a great trip. The weather was really warm and I slept in just shorts and no top quilt until about 3:00 am. After that I only covered my legs to keep the chill off. I used my Speer SnugFit for the first time although I didn't really need it. I did figure out how to vent the SnugFit for warmer nights.

    You can see more pics in this gallery.

    I would really like to plan a gathering in this area at some point. As stated in another thread there is a lot of trash at the top and I think it would be nice to try and clean up the area a little bit by everyone carrying some trash down as they leave. It was also sad that people had carved their initials, crude pictures, an just generally defaced the soft sandstone near the top. It pisses me off that some people have no respect for the natural beauty of the spot and think it looks better with a pot leaf etched in the rock and stupid crap like "So-n-so Wuz Here"
    “Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it." -Terry Pratchett



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  2. #2
    Senior Member NCPatrick's Avatar
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    Great report. Cool looking place. Is that where we're planning to camp in November?


    "Civilization is the limitless multiplication of unnecessary necessities."
    - Mark Twain
    “I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order.”
    - John Burroughs

  3. #3
    Senior Member headchange4u's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NCPatrick View Post
    Great report. Cool looking place. Is that where we're planning to camp in November?
    It is a possibility. We may try to plan another gathering at this area and one that is more accessible to everyone. I don't think that we would want small children climbing IS. Also, I don't think I would attempt the IS if it was wet because those rocks would be very slick.

    This was one of the best outings I have had in the Gorge in a long time. Awesome spot.
    “Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it." -Terry Pratchett



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  4. #4
    Senior Member headchange4u's Avatar
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    I forgot to replace the memory card in my camera , so I had a limited number of pictures. You can see some more shots of the area here.
    “Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it." -Terry Pratchett



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  5. #5
    slowhike's Avatar
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    great place! i hope i can get out there.
    i would be glad to help tote out the stupid people's trash<g>... some body's got to do it. the people who left it there apparently aren't smart enough to
    when i take people backpacking, i try to leave the place as we found it or better.
    don`t leave the CREATOR out of the creation!

  6. #6
    Senior Member Ewker's Avatar
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    nice trip report and pics. Lots of good places to go in RRG...did you hit the buffet at the lodge or Miquels Pizza afterwards.

  7. #7
    Senior Member headchange4u's Avatar
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    Skipped the buffet this time.
    “Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it." -Terry Pratchett



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  8. #8
    Hooch's Avatar
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    Man, from the report and the pics it seems like y'all had a pretty good time. Kinda makes me wish I didn't have to work last weekend. What ya doing this weekend? I'm off Sat and can probably get someone to cover my shift Friday.
    "If you play a Nicleback song backwards, you'll hear messages from the devil. Even worse, if you play it forward, you'll hear Nickleback." - Dave Grohl

  9. #9
    Senior Member Bird Dog's Avatar
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    Thanks for the report. Now I have to add ANOTHER place on the life list. So many places to hang, so little time. BD
    Just Jeff made me do it

  10. #10
    Hooch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bird Dog View Post
    Thanks for the report. Now I have to add ANOTHER place on the life list. So many places to hang, so little time. BD
    BD, RRG is less than an hour from where I live. Come on up, we'll head out and do it up. I'm trying to plan a trip there this weekend with a co-worker. I hope it works out. I've never been there, and the IS looks like a cool place to hang.
    "If you play a Nicleback song backwards, you'll hear messages from the devil. Even worse, if you play it forward, you'll hear Nickleback." - Dave Grohl

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