This trip features two iconic landmarks in Western North Carolina: Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the Mountains to Sea Trail! Join us for this 3 day intermediate backpacking trip. Your trip will begin by driving to Clingmans Dome, the highest point in the Smokies! You'll then travel to the trailhead, where your hike begins near Mount Collins. You'll hike 22 miles to Oconoluftee Visitor Center to end your trip, just outside the town of Cherokee, NC. Participants should have some previous backpacking experience, and should be comfortable hiking up to 11 miles per day over rugged terrain. This is a great time of year to see lots of wildflowers in the Smokies. This trip is open to anyone who would like to join!
Trip Cost: $550 per person. Price includes gear for the trip, all on-trail food (Friday lunch through Sunday lunch), lodging Thursday night, guide, transportation between the meet-up location and the trailhead, and backcountry permits within the National Park. Price does not include meals for Thursday night or Friday morning, personal items (clothing, medication, etc), or gratuity for your guide.
Itinerary: You will meet your guide at 8am on Friday May 1 at the Appalachian Trail-er for a pack shakedown. Your guide will hand out your gear, go over necessary packing items, and discuss safety, weather, and logistics for the trip. They'll walk you through how to properly pack your pack, and may look in detail at the items you've packed to make sure you're not carrying too many extra items. Around 10am, you will shuttle to Mount Collins, where you will start your hike. You can leave your car in Hot Springs, or You have the option to follow our vehicle and leave your car at Oconoluftee Visitor Center. After 3 days of hiking, you will make it to the Oconoluftee Visitor Center, where you will be picked up and ride back to Hot Springs.
For more information or to register for this trip, check out our website: https://blueridgehikingco.com/overnights/smokymountains-may2020