Sat, Aug 5 2017 - Chattooga River Trail Backpacking (View Original Event Details)|
We had wonderful and memorable backpacking trip at the Chattooga River Trail. Besides the two trip leaders, we had two fun and adventurous campers on the trip. It was a privledge to lead our group along the trail to the campsite. The weather was a concern earlier in the week but we were treated to very pleasant backpacking weather. The rain the day before made the woods bright and fresh with trickling streams running across our path. We walked the lower trail that is parallel to the Chattooga River which was lined with fern glens and mature rhododendrons. We were faced with many, many downed trees that we had cross over and under. This trail also leads to several fishing trails and was overgrown in areas. We were full of energy and excitement for the weekend ahead.
Once we arrived at the campsite we set up camp and then went swimming in the clear refreshing river. We were lucky to get a flat campsite right next to the river about 3.7 miles in. The relaxing sound of the river cascading over the rocks was heard all day and night giving us another reminder why we sleep in the woods for fun. We went for a short hike to a couple of nearby waterfalls then collected firewood on the return hike. The campfire was burning, dinner eaten, and camp talk with accompanying music followed. After dark we continued to share stories and enjoy each other’s company while being treated by an appearance of the full moon reflecting off the tree trunks on the opposite side of the river. We were surrounded by the symphony of crickets.
Sunday morning we got to see a group of tubers and their St.Bernard coast down the river to their camp. Looked like a fun way to see the Chattooga. We broke camp and proceeded back to the trail head via the green blazed Chattooga Foothills trail. This trail took us away from the river and deeper into woods with more elevation. We encountered many, many more large downed trees that were also angled downhill. This trail was even more challenging because the angle of the trees made it tricky to get over without sliding down the tree. There were also times where we had to crawl under the trees on our hands and knees. The path was still beautiful-bordered by foam flower, maiden hair ferns, shiny Galax leaves scattered amongst the blanket of winterberry.
Our group had a great sense of adventure, outdoor attitude, and comradarie. This event gave us an ideal opportunity to try out new gear and allows beginner backpackers a chance to check it out. It is no wonder why the Chattooga River Trail is a popular place for backpacking. It is a beautiful river that allows us to get away for a weekend and refresh from daily life.
I believe we have two more hikers bitten by the backpacking bug.