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BMT Backpack- Smoky Mts - Smktmnt to Tunnel

The Basics:
Event Type:Backpacking
Event Location: Smokemont Campground, GSMNP   Backpacking: BMT Backpack- Smoky Mts - Smktmnt to Tunnel  National Weather Service Forecast
Date(s) & Time:Fri, Apr 15 2016  4:00 pm >> Sun, Apr 17 2016 9:00 pm  (Carpool Departure: 4:00 pm   *log in for location*)
Registration Opens: Thu, Mar 31 2016 8:00 pm
Registration Cut Off: Thu, Apr 14 2016 8:00 pm
Event Duration:2 Days 5 Hours
Difficulty Rating:D6: Advanced (Exploratory)
Distance:26 Miles
Trip Leader(s):
Myra Kincaid
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Member Cost:None

Participant Info:
Who's Invited: Members Only, 21 And Older Only
Maximum Group Size:8
Minimum Group Size:3
Number Registered So Far: 4 / 0 (To see who's signed up, log in to the Member Area)
Are Dogs Permitted: Yes

Note: This is an "EXPLORATORY" trip. This means that there are parts of this trip, or perhaps the whole trip, that is new to your Trip Leader(s). However, they are confident that this will not be an issue.
This note is here so that you can make an informed decision. When a Trip Leader isn't personally familiar with a trip, there is an increased chance of things not going as planned and you need to be prepared. The Trip Leader may have additional details in the itinerary.


This is an advanced backpack and requires prior backpacking experience! If you do not have a history of D5 backpacks with the club, you will be contacted to confirm you experience. Trip leadership reserves the right to remove anyone that they feel may not be able to complete the trip.

 About the trip:

    This will be a point-to-point backpack on a section of the Benton Mackaye trail, starting at Smokemont Campground and finishing a the parking lot for the Road-to-nowhere.


   Friday Evening: We will depart from the carpool at 4pm, and drive directly to the Smokemont Campground to claim camps-sites for the night. The passengers (nondrivers) will reamin at Smokemont to set up camp, eat dinner and relax for the evening.  The drivers will continue to the parking lot at the Road to Nowhere to leave cars at our end point. If desired by the group we will hire someone to shuttle the drivers back to Smokemont. This would remove the need to retrieve cars on Sunday evening.


   Saturday: We will start early on Saturday, and plan to hike about 12.4 miles, stopping at campground 57, Bryson Place. We will begin the day by hiking south from the Smokemont campground, crossing the road before heading up into the mountains. There will be a long sweaty ascent of 3000ft in the first five miles followed by an equally long descent until we reach our campground for the night. If anyone is still full of energy and wanting to hike more, there is a possibility to do additional hiking down the Deep Creek trail which intersects close to our campsite.


   Sunday: We will start early, planning to leave camp within one hour of sunrise, in order to safely complete the remaining 14 miles before dark, and get back to Atlanta at a reasonable time. We will begin going south once more, and climb about 1500' in the first few miles for descending the rest of the way to Road to Nowhere.


Please plan on bringing an additional $10 to pay for our sites at Smokemont campground, and backcountry permit. This is in addition to gas money for the carpool.


If the team wishes, there is an option to hire a shuttle driver to bring the drivers back to Smokemont on the first night from the Road to Nowhere. The total cost would be $106, or ~$13 per person if we have a full group. Hiring this shuttle would allow us to drive only two cars instead of three up to  the Smokies. Also, it would save about an hour of car retrieval time on Sunday evening. A vote will be taken to see if the group wishes to hire this shuttle.



About The Trail:

The Benton MacKaye Trail (BMT) is a footpath of nearly 300 miles through the Appalachian mountains of the southeastern United States. It is designed for foot travel in the tradition of the Appalachian Trail (AT).

Running from Springer Mountain in Georgia to Big Creek Campground on the northern edge of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park (the Smokies), the BMT passes through some of the most remote backcountry in Georgia, Tennessee and North Carolina, including eight federally designated Wilderness and Wilderness Study Areas.


Required Items to Bring:
  • Hiking Boots / Shoes
  • Backpack
  • Tent / Tarp / Hammock 
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Sleep Pad
  • Food and Snacks (2 days worth)
  • Water and Filtration / Purification device, Drops, or Tablets
  • Headlamp and spare batteries



Recommended Items to Bring:
Use our Event Checklists to make sure you have everything you need.

Use our Event Checkliststo make sure you have everything you need.

  • Camera
  • Hiking Poles
  • Sunscreen
  • Bug Spray
  • Stove
  • Matches/Lighter
  • Change of Clothes and Towel for Drive Home
  • Maps/GPS
  • Harmonicas, flutes, cards, etc.

How to Get There:
Carpool to Event Distance (round trip):298Mile(s)
Carpool Departure Time: 4:00 pm
Carpool Location:   Log in for location
Carpool Directions:   Log in for directions
Carpool Cost: Estimated cost per vehicle for this event is $119.20 using a reimbursement rate guideline of $0.400 per mile. The total amount should be divided by the number of people in the vehicle, including the driver. This is a guideline, not a rule, for drivers but the cost should not be higher unless there are extenuating circumstances.

* We encourage all members to follow our Etiquette Guidelines while participating in AOC events.

Cancellation/Partial Attendance:   Please review the AOC cancellation policy.