Long (And Potentially Epic Hikes) With Your Dog In The Southeast

This is a forum for dog owners that like to take their pet on the trail.
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Post by BirdShooter » Sun Dec 26, 2010 5:15 am

1. The Bartram Trailis named after William Bartram, a botanist who in 1773 was one of the earliest Europeans to explore the mountains of Georgia and North Carolina. The Bartram Trail roughly follows the route that the explorer followed as he recorded and catalogued over 200 species of native plants. The southern terminus starts along the Georgia and South Carolina border at the Chattooga River and after nine miles begins a series of climbs that peak at Rabun Bald (4,696 feet) a few miles south of the Georgia and North Carolina border. As the trail leaves Georgia for the Tarheel State, it climbs to some magnificent peaks including Scaly Mountain, Wayah Bald, and finally Cheoah Bald (5062 feet) the northern terminus of the Bartram Trail.

2. The Chattooga River Trail is a forty mile route that borders the states of North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia and follows the banks of the Chattooga National Wild And Scenic River from Burrell's Ford to US 76. Congress designated the river on May 10, 1974 and it is often used by kayakers, hikers, backpackers, and fisherman as it winds down from the North Carolina mountains. The Chattooga River Trail shares its pathway with both the Foothills and Bartram Trails in the Russell Bridge area, but it stays close to the river for its entire distance unlike the other major southeastern trails.

3. The Appalachian Trail is a 2164 mile footpath that runs along the Appalachian Mountains from Maine to Georgia. The trail's northern terminus is in Central Maine in Baxter State Park at Mt. Katahdin. The southern terminus is in North Georgia in the Chattahooche National Forest at Springer Mountain. You can hike just the GA, NC, or TN sections or knock out around 450 miles and do them in one trip.

4. Foothills Trail - The main stem of this nearly 100 mile long hiking trail extends from Table Rock State Park in Pickens County, to Oconee State Park in Oconee County. The trail crosses some of the most rugged and beautiful terrain in the Southeast and provides access to Sassafrass Mountain, the highest peak in South Carolina and to major mountain streams and breathtaking views. The section of the trail from Laurel Fork Creek to the Whitewater River is often referred to as the Gorges Section and was initially built and maintained by Duke Power Company as part of a licensing agreement for the construction of Lake Joccasee. Both State and Federal agencies have taken over management responsibilities in recent years, and this section of South Carolina has some of the best backcountry wilderness in the Southeast. Ceasars Head State Park has a spur trail to the Foothills Trail that extends the distance if you desire a longer hike.

5. The Duncan Ridge Trailis a rugged and difficult route that runs from Long Creek Falls (near Dahlonega, GA) to Slaughter Gap (near Blairsville, GA). The trail's western terminus is less than a mile from U.S. Forest Road 58 at the convergence of three streams in an area known as Three Forks. The D.R.T. shares this route with the Benton MacKaye Trail for about sixteen miles to Rhodes Mountain then breaks east and makes a series of ascents and descents in route to the summit of Coosa Bald. From here the trail continues toward Slaughter Gap, the site of a bloody Indian battle, where it reaches the eastern terminus. Parking is nearby at the Reece Memorial Parking Area and a sixty-mile loop hike is possible when combined with the Appalachian Trail which touches both the western and eastern terminus of the D.R.T.

6. The Benton MacKaye Trail (BMT) is a footpath of nearly 300 miles through the Appalachian mountains of the southeastern United States. It is named in honor of Benton MacKaye whose vision resulted in the creation of the Appalachian Trail in the early 1900's. The BMT is designed for foot travel in the tradition of the Appalachian Trail (A.T.) and runs from Springer Mountain in Georgia to Davenport Gap on the northern edge of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The Benton MacKaye Trail passes through some of the most remote backcountry in Georgia, Tennessee and North Carolina, including eight federally designated Wilderness and Wilderness Study Areas.

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