Crew 4 completed its first Tier II adventure on April 14-15, 2017. Six Venturers and five volunteers—plus Izzy, the son of two of our associate advisors—spent two days in the backcountry of Great Smoky Mountains National Park camping and fishing along Abrams Creek.
On Friday, April 14, 2017, we traveled from TVUUC to the Abrams Creek campground, where we parked and hiked through the campground to the trailhead for the Cooper Road Trail. We followed the Cooper Road Trail for 0.9 miles until we reached its junction with the Little Bottoms Trail. We then hiked the Little Bottoms Trail up a short but steep ascent over a ridge and then down along Abrams Creek for another 1.6 miles to Backcountry Campsite No. 17. Campsite 17 proved an idyllic spot: it is a large, flat, and well-drained campsite with ample tree cover overlooking the northern bank of the creek.
We set up camp in good weather, with several Venturers opting to hang hammocks rather than pitch tents. After a light lunch, we spent the afternoon fishing and swimming. We also made several contacts on our Advisor’s handheld amateur radio.
Since we did not catch any fish, our dinner consisted of a buffet of assorted freeze-dried meals. After hanging our bear bags and enjoying a campfire together, we called it a night.
We woke up shortly after daybreak the following morning on Saturday, April 15. After cooking breakfast, most of the crew stayed at the campsite for another round of fishing, while two Venturers and our Advisor set off for Abrams Falls. This group, traveling light and fast, completed the remainder of the Little Booms Trail, hiking eastward for another 0.6 miles until reaching that trail’s terminus at the Hatcher Mountain Trail. The group then followed the Hatcher Mountain Trail 0.2 miles to its junction at the Hannah Mountain Trail and Abrams Falls Trail. Finally, the group continued along the Abrams Falls Trail a further 1.6 miles until reaching the falls. After a half-hour of photos and refueling, the group retracted the same patch back to Campsite 17.
Reunited, the crew soon departed Campsite 17 and returned to the Abrams Creek campground along the same route as the previous day.
We’re looking forward to more backpacking adventures in the Smokies.