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  1. #1
    Senior Member Hangin' Burrito's Avatar
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    Question Cataloochee in August?

    Hey all,
    For the last year or so I've had an interest in doing a loop hike in GSMNP. Cataloochee to Mt. Sterling to be specific. Here's what I've been thinking:

    Friday- Arrive at the Little Cataloochee trailhead in Nellie, hopefully get started around 10am or so, and hike to campsite #38.(at Mt. Sterling summit, this is going by the NatGeo Great Smokies map) make camp.

    Saturday- Hike the Mt. Sterling trail to Long Bunk trail, and find a place to make camp, and just relax for the rest of the day.

    Sunday- Hike out on the Little Cataloochee trail back to the cars.

    I figure it's about 20-23 miles round trip. Not bad for a 3 day trek.

    Ya'll give me your feedback, comments, questions, etc. I'll post a map and more details later.
    "Is this the best you've got?!!" (Shortoff Mtn., Linville Gorge 2010)

    "Life is tough.....it's even tougher if you're stupid!".....(John Wayne)

  2. #2
    BillyBob58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hangin' Burrito View Post
    Hey all,
    For the last year or so I've had an interest in doing a loop hike in GSMNP. Cataloochee to Mt. Sterling to be specific. Here's what I've been thinking:

    Friday- Arrive at the Little Cataloochee trailhead in Nellie, hopefully get started around 10am or so, and hike to campsite #38.(at Mt. Sterling summit, this is going by the NatGeo Great Smokies map) make camp.

    Saturday- Hike the Mt. Sterling trail to Long Bunk trail, and find a place to make camp, and just relax for the rest of the day.

    Sunday- Hike out on the Little Cataloochee trail back to the cars.

    I figure it's about 20-23 miles round trip. Not bad for a 3 day trek.

    Ya'll give me your feedback, comments, questions, etc. I'll post a map and more details later.
    I doubt I will be able to make that one unless something changes, but that sounds like a good trip! I've hiked to the top of Sterling two different times in years past, from the other side. ( From Big Creek OR Deep Creek campground, maybe? Waterville exit?) That is a real grunt from that side, with 4100 feet of gain in 6.2 miles from campground to next authorized camping spot at the summit. And with the heavier loads we used to carry! Not much water, either. Quite a challenge if you are out of shape like I was(am), especially if you are hiking back down the next day and loosing that 4100 feet.

    I have also camped in Catalooche campground(primitive), and really enjoyed that. This sounds like a fun loop! How much elevation gain is there from the Catalooche trailhead to camp 38?
    For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us....that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now.
    Romans 8:18,21-22

  3. #3
    Senior Member Hangin' Burrito's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BillyBob58 View Post
    How much elevation gain is there from the Catalooche trailhead to camp 38?
    According to the NatGeo map, it looks like around 2700 ft of elevation. I'm doing some research and checking out some other websites. I'm pretty excited about this!
    "Is this the best you've got?!!" (Shortoff Mtn., Linville Gorge 2010)

    "Life is tough.....it's even tougher if you're stupid!".....(John Wayne)

  4. #4
    Senior Member Peg-Leg's Avatar
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    I'll be watching this closely. I've hiked the other side of the park, but never around Cataloochee.

    There's usually a lot of bear activity in that area.
    If God had meant for us to sleep on the ground,
    He wouldn't have created trees....

    “Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in where nature may heal and cheer and give strength to the body and soul.” - John Muir

  5. #5
    Senior Member Hangin' Burrito's Avatar
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    Well, I know there's elk in the Cataloochee area. The Wildlife Federation introduced them around 15 yrs. or so ago.
    The Smokies are known for their Black bear population. I consider it a great privilege to see one out in the wilds. Let's hope so!
    "Is this the best you've got?!!" (Shortoff Mtn., Linville Gorge 2010)

    "Life is tough.....it's even tougher if you're stupid!".....(John Wayne)

  6. #6
    Running Feather's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hangin' Burrito View Post
    According to the NatGeo map, it looks like around 2700 ft of elevation. I'm doing some research and checking out some other websites. I'm pretty excited about this!
    Nat Geo software says ~3100' gain to the summit
    and ~17 miles.

    Coach...Put me in
    "If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing you should do is STOP DIGGING "

  7. #7
    Senior Member Hangin' Burrito's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Running Feather View Post
    Nat Geo software says ~3100' gain to the summit
    and ~17 miles.

    Coach...Put me in
    Thanks RF, I knew I could count on you to set me straight.
    "Is this the best you've got?!!" (Shortoff Mtn., Linville Gorge 2010)

    "Life is tough.....it's even tougher if you're stupid!".....(John Wayne)

  8. #8
    Hickery's Avatar
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    I could do the last wk-end of Aug.Missed putting in some miles with y'all in the Gorge.Had'nt been down that way in a while.
    "I like grits,because they have no bones" Chet Atkins

  9. #9
    Senior Member Hangin' Burrito's Avatar
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    August 27-29

    The date is set. The last weekend in August is as good a date as any for this hike/hang.
    I hope this works for anyone interested in coming, I think this'll be a really pretty hike. There's alot of interesting old remnants of homes and barns from the turn of the century.
    Plus, the elk and bear we might see!
    "Is this the best you've got?!!" (Shortoff Mtn., Linville Gorge 2010)

    "Life is tough.....it's even tougher if you're stupid!".....(John Wayne)

  10. #10
    I have a lot of stuff happening around that time this year. But provided that school, work, and life is in order I'll be there!
    -legs

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