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Smoky Mtns - Charlies Bunion - AT Ridgeline

The Basics:
Event Type:Backpacking
Event Location: Smokemont/BMT Crossing, Newfound Gap   Backpacking: Smoky Mtns -  Charlies Bunion - AT Ridgeline   National Weather Service Forecast
Date(s) & Time:Sat, Apr 22 2017  7:00 am >> Sun, Apr 23 2017 8:00 pm  (Carpool Departure: 7:00 am   *log in for location*)
Registration Opens: Mon, Apr 10 2017 8:00 pm
Registration Cut Off: Thu, Apr 20 2017 12:00 pm
Event Duration:1 Days 13 Hours
Difficulty Rating:D5: Difficult (Exploratory)
Distance:22 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: 5 / 0 (To see who's signed up, log in to the Member Area)
Are Dogs Permitted: No

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.


 About the trip:

    This will be a point-to-point, shuttle backpack in the Smoky mountains. Starting at Newfound we will hike east along the Smoky mountain ridgeline, taking in epic views at Charlies Bunion. We camp at Pecks Corner shelter, before hiking down Hughes Ridgetrail and following Hughes Ridge trail to finish at Smokemont.

   This would be a good event for D5/D6 hikers wishing to make the transition to backpacking, or D4 backpackers to step up to a D5 level.


   Saturday: (10.4 miles) We will depart from the carpool at 7am, and arrive in the Smokies around 10am. We will leave at least one car at our finish point, a parking lot just outside of Smokemont campground, before shuttling up to Newfound Gap. We will hike along the jagged ridgeline of the the Appalachian trail along the ridgeline, taking in the epic views of Charlies Bunion. The total hike to Pecks corner shelter will be 10.4 miles. The shelter provides bear cables, covered picnic tables, and a privy. However, sleeping space in the shelter is not gauranteed due to through-hiker season.  If anyone is craving additional mileage there may be the option to dayhike further along the ridgeline, possibly taking in Mt Sequoya and Mt Chapman.


   Sunday: (11.3 miles) Sunday morning we plan to leave the shelter about 8-8:30am. We will descend the Hughes Ridge Trail,  turning to follow the Chasteen Creek Trail, and finishing via the Fork Creek trail. The hiking on this day will be along creeks through towering woodlands, and will be a contrast to the previous day's hike along the ridgeline. We will complete our hike at the parking lot next to Smokemont where we left our cars. We will retrieve the car from Newfound gap (~40minutes) before driving back to Atlanta. 


   Sites along the trail:

Charlies Bunion: 

Trail journal describing section:


    Please note that a tent is still required even though we are staying at a shelter. Space in the shelters is not gauranteed, especially since this is still through-hiker season.

    Please be prepared for cold, wet weather. We will be high in the mountains, which can be significant colder that Atlanta.

  Please bring $4 to pay for the backcountry permit. This is in addition to the money needed for your shuttle driver.

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: 7:00 am
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.