Benton Mackaye Trail -Sec 3&4 - Hwy 60 to Wilscot Gap - Sat, May 10 2014

REGISTRATION REQUIRED: Once you've reviewed the event details, and decided you'd like to join us, you MUST sign up at the bottom of this page.

Benton Mackaye Trail -Sec 3&4 - Hwy 60 to Wilscot Gap

The Basics:
Event Type:Hike
Event Location: BMT crossing at Hwy 60, across from forest service Rd 816   Hike: Benton Mackaye Trail -Sec 3&4 - Hwy 60 to Wilscot Gap  National Weather Service Forecast
Date(s) & Time:Sat, May 10 2014  9:30 am >> Sat, May 10 2014 3:30 pm  (Carpool Departure: 8:00 am   *log in for location*)
Registration Opens: Fri, May 2 2014 7:06 pm
Registration Cut Off: Fri, May 9 2014 12:00 pm
Event Duration:6 Hours
Difficulty Rating:D5: Difficult
Distance:11 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: 7 / 0 (To see who's signed up, log in to the Member Area)
Are Dogs Permitted: No




This is not a beginners hike! Please do not sign up if you are not confident in your ability to complete this hike. If you do not have a history of D5 hikes with the club, I will be contacting you to confirm your experience.


About the hike:


This hike will begin at the southernmost point where the Benton Mackaye (BMT) crosses Hwy 60. The group will need to wait approximately 20 minutes while at least one car is shuttled the 7 miles to the hike end-point at Wilscot Gap, also on Hwy 60. This hike will encompass two sections of the Benton Mackaye trail, totaling about 11 miles of steep mountain trail. This hike will be performed at a fast pace with a few rest stops for water and snacks. Please bring at least 2-3 liters of water, as water sources are limited on this trail. This hike will finish at Wilscot Gap. An additional 20 minute wait may be required for retrieving the car left at the start point of the hike.


About The Trail:

The Benton MacKaye Trail (BMT) is a footpath of nearly 300 miles (480 km) 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. Online trail guides can be found here:


This hike will encompass sections 2 and 3 of the Benton Mackaye. Details for these sections are as follows. 


Benton Mackaye Section 3:

This section of trail, 5.6 miles, while relatively short, is the most difficult for its length because of the repeated long ascents and descents. Its entire length earns it a "Most Difficult" rating. Three peaks with elevations over 3000' comprise this section. Wallalah Mountain, Licklog Mountain, and Rhodes Mountain all require significant climbing. The Benton MacKaye Trail (BMT) runs concurrent with the Duncan Ridge National Recreation Trail (DRT) as far as Rhodes Mountain. Here the blue, rectangular blazed DRT turns east while the white, diamond blazed BMT turns northwest. This area lies mostly within the Cooper Creek Wildlife Management Area.


Benton Mackaye Section 4:

Following a well-maintained path through a dense hardwood forest, this 5.1-mile section of the Benton MacKaye Trail offers little in the way of views, but more than enough isolation to compensate. From Skeenah Gap, the BMT makes an undulating 1.8-mile ascent before descending to Payne Gap, the section's best campsite and only reliable water source. At Payne Gap, you'll also find one of two unobstructed view points along the trail (look north for distant views out to North Carolina and Tennessee). The smooth, easy-on-the-knees trail traces the ridgeline, topping out near Deadennen Mountain before skirting the eastern slopes of Wilscot Mountain (another viewpoint) on the descent to Wilscot Gap.

Required Items to Bring:

Water - 2-3 liters minimum


Well-broken-in hiking boots or shoes


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




Rain Gear

How to Get There:
Event Directions:


GA North on GA400/ US-19

Turn left on US 19N/S Chestatee - 5.1miles

Turn right on Morrison Moore Pkwy E - 3.3miles

Continue on GA-60/US-19N

The small parking area will be on the east side of GA-60, just across from forest service road 816.

Carpool to Event Distance (round trip):59Mile(s)
Carpool Departure Time: 8:00 am
Carpool Location:   Log in for location
Carpool Directions:   Log in for directions
Carpool Cost: Estimated cost per vehicle for this event is $23.60 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.