hiking
blowdown
bugs
flooded
over grown
3 days ago

Date: 6/26/2020 DO NOT TAKE THIS TRAIL WARNING: would definitely suggest taking Rice Camp Trail because we made a huge mistake taking another trail called the “Hickory Ridge Trail #7”- that there must have been a recent fire or storm or both; there were so many thorn bushes, extremely overgrown shrubs like a solid 8-10 miles of this. We went as a group of four of us and at one point, at 630pm we realized we reached a critical crossroad: either we cut through a ravine to a shortcut to get on to the Rice Camp Trail or we continue moving forward on Hickory Ridge Trail for another unknown amount of miles to loop back around and end on rice camp. We decided to cut thru the ravine and while we all agreed that it was the right decision, we sure suffered for it. We had to climb up a mountain at the end of the ravine (45° incline) then slide down other side of the mountainous terrain for 0.5 miles until we FINALLY reached rice camp trail and were able to get back to our car safely by 8:45pm. Again I repeat, DO NOT DO THIS TRAIL Unless you like getting scratched by briars and other brush and constantly climbing over and under fallen trees.

Great trails but bring your bear spray! We started off around the lake (follow signs to boat picnic area) then ended up hiking the Fire Tower Trail. Rained along the way but the tree cover kept us pretty dry. Got some pretty pictures from the Tower (note: to get there the trail will take you to an old road. Just follow the tire tracks up to the tower. Think it was like .5 mile-ish). No real views till you get to the tower. Saw lots of bear scat on the trails near the lake and ended up running into one on the trail back to the lake so had to back track to a side road. Thanks to my downloaded All Trails map I was able to guide us back to the parking. Nature is nature lol... just might want to have your bear spray handy as it tis the season .

hiking
blowdown
over grown
18 days ago

DO NOT USE THIS TRAIL. Completely overgrown and many trees down along the way. This was not an enjoyable hike due to the lack of maintenance unfortunately, which is a shame because the falls are beautiful. Again, I repeat, DO NOT DO THIS TRAIL unless you like getting scratched by briars and other brush and constantly climbing over and under fallen trees.

hiking
blowdown
bridge out
bugs
closed
muddy
no shade
over grown
rocky
scramble
washed out
20 days ago

backpacking
blowdown
21 days ago

Awesome trail, be prepared for a gazillion river crossings and endless blowdown. Even if all goes smoothly, this trail will slow you down. This is a challenging and rewarding trip, I will be back often! Not for those who are not surefooted, I would avoid after heavy rains as some of the crossings are fairly deep even when the water is down.

backpacking
blowdown
22 days ago

Backpacked this with 5 other guys back on June 12th-13th. Hiked in on Friday to the 1st (maybe 2nd) camping area about 1.5 miles in, literally right next to Rough Creek. Fantastic place to camp, especially for a group our size. 3 of us had tents, 3 had hammocks, with room to spare. Large downed tree in the middle of the campsite made for a perfect bench for those without chairs. Firepit already built and plenty of downed wood made for an easy fire. Woke up Saturday and hiked down to roughly the 3 mile mark where the Hickory Creek Trail meets up with both the Conasauga River Trail and Tearbritches Trail. A few members of our group continued on the Conasauga River Trail to the Panther Creek Trail and hiked to Panther Creek Falls. The rest of us chose to head back to camp (were dealing with some injuries). Ended up hiking back out as a group around 3pm instead of staying a 2nd night. This was actually my first overnight backpacking trip, so a nice checkmark on the bucket list. Great trip overall, but below are my thoughts on the trail itself (but I’m not an experienced backpacker/hiker, so take this with a grain of salt). Blowdowns were numerous, as other commenters have mentioned. Probably 10-12 just to make it down to the first campsite (1.5 miles). Nothing too difficult to deal with, but definitely more work then simply ‘stepping over’ them. The hike from mile 1.5 to 3.0 was not as bad, but a few blowdowns and wet areas to navigate around. Again, nothing I would consider ‘bad’. It sounds like from other commenters, it gets worse after crossing the Conasauga River at mile 3, but we didn’t venture that far, so I can’t verify. Aside from the blowdowns, I thought it was fantastic and will definitely be back. The camping area where we stayed was very cool and honestly, there were several others like that around 1.75 - 2.0 miles in should that first one be full. If you’re looking for a shorter hike, I highly recommend it - especially good for a beginner.

blowdown
over grown
1 month ago

Directions were incorrect to this trailhead for us as well. We ended up on Horseshoe Bend and it was very overgrown and so dense by all the fallen trees. We did make it down to the river which was beautiful, but I would wait until the National Park Service is able to clear up the trail.

Don’t use the directions function for this trail. It sent me to the wrong trailhead. This is not a review for Jack’s River

hiking
blowdown
over grown
scramble
1 month ago

It is a great trail will definitely do it again. IT is not for the everyone. There are lots of blow downs for the second half of the trail. Bush wacked the second half of the trail. You will most definitely get a good workout.

hiking
blowdown
1 month ago

It’s a beautiful area with a reasonably smooth road in starting from the north. Only downside is that there are constant blow downs. Couldn’t imagine doing this entire trail with a full pack. Day pack and 5 mile round trip was challenging and time consuming for someone in excellent physical condition. I still recommend checking it out, but manage your ambitions and find a nice spot to hang out and enjoy the ambiance. First mile and a half are relatively easy until the first river crossing. Avoid this trail if there’s been heavy rain recently.

hiking
blowdown
over grown
1 month ago

Lots of blowdown, some crossings thigh to waist deep. Gorgeous scenery. Challenging terrain. Only saw one blaze the whole time, mainly unmarked trail. Lost the trail where 4 downed trees were stacked on top of each other, barricading the trail, somewhere right before the Conasauga River gets fatter on the map. Maybe a mile or so from that point. Made it around the downed tree barricade, but found no discernible trail. Bushwhacked along steep graded embankment next to large dark caves that looked like a great apartment complex for bears. Lots of claw marks on surrounding trees. Didn’t see any bears, though. Hiked/skidded down the embankment to the river’s edge to try to hike along the rocks, scrambled boulders for another ⅛ mile, boulders kept getting bigger, water getting deeper. Turned back after careful risk assessment. Maybe we were supposed to cross the river there? Not sure. Back-tracked to known campsite and called it a night. Know when to hold em and know when to fold em. Incredible wilderness journey that I will do again and try to find the right way. Not for people who like a nice, maintained, mulched trail. Climbing, scrambling, crouching, ducking, even crawling required. Swimming possible if you’re not careful. Downed trees and widowmakers everywhere. Bring a saw, you might need it. Water shoes are a must-have, unless you want to commit to hiking in wet boots the whole time. My Salomon Amphibian Swift 2’s performed well. Feet didn’t like being wet for hours, but not significantly damaged. Just sore.

backpacking
blowdown
muddy
washed out
1 month ago

ok, we hike 10 miles + nearly everyweekend, and hike a nearby trail several times a week. This trail although absolutely breathtaking, was an absolute bitc#. The river crossings are a ton, deep, and often very fast moving on very slippery rocks. I know sounds like a cop out, that's what I thought of other reviews! The blowdowns are everywhere, which I normally enjoy them, however its constant, the trail is completely blocked and you have to find it again, which although doable slows you down immensely. we were averaging 1 mph! I have a garmin GPS watch and my boyfriend has giia running the whole time and we both tracked way more miles then stated here. If you go be prepared for a tough few days!

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