Monday, November 22, 2010

Fiery Gizzard Trail

Day One:
Fiery Gizzard Trail 8.1
Day Two:
Fiery Gizzard Trail 4.4
Grundy Forest Day Loop 1.3
Grundy Lakes State Park 1.3

Lora and I decided to do an overnight hike at the South Cumberland Recreation Area. I had not hiked the Fiery Gizzard trail from Foster Falls to Raven Point. I did not think that I had been to Foster Falls until I saw it. I had done some repelling here about ten years ago with the volunteers.

I wanted to impress Lora right off. We made it about ten steps going down to the bottom of the falls, when I twisted my ankle and went to my knees. That hurt! I picked up what was left of my pride and we continued on.

At the bottom of the falls we took the Climbers Loop along the bluff wall. This is a mile long wall that is well known across the states as a place for wall climbers. They were hanging everywhere and the wall was covered in chalk where they had climbed before. It is amazing where these guys go, even upside down.

We climbed back to the top and enjoyed a couple of different overlooks as we continued our hike. This is a pretty easy section of hike other than the drop into Laurel Gorge and back out.

We stopped at the Anderson Falls which is an 80 foot drop water fall with a set of wood steps to the bottom. Right at two hundred of those steps our muscles counted on the way back up. This is the last water before Raven Point campground where we stayed the night.

Raven point campground has six sites and is located on private property which we found out means you cannot have a campfire here. It worked out as the weather was beautiful and we even left the rain fly off the tent so we could enjoy the stars and full moon.

All the sites except two were taken up by the Boy Scouts. We did hike out to see the sunset from Raven Point and get our hearts racing everytime a Boy Scout went out by the edge of the drop off.

The next morning we hiked the hard part of the trail from Raven point to the Grundy Forest Picnic Shelter. While going down into the Gulf, Lora decided to show me an Outcast short cut. As we were trying to get back up to the trail, she did a little dance with a twist on the side of the drop off, where I grabbed her by the pack before she did the final dismount. She was quite impressive to watch, but I didn't want to see the end.

We decided to include the day loop at the end of the trail since neither of us had hiked it before. There are a couple of more water falls on this section of the trail.

On our drive back through Tracy City we had to stop by the Dutch Made Bakery for a celebration. Well, they just happen to be serving a lunch buffet at the time and well you know.....

After waddling out of the Dutch Made Bakery, we decided that we should walk off a little of that food. We drove to Grundy Lakes State Park and hiked around the lakes. We were impressed by all the Coke Ovens there and there is a lot of history. Once again to impress Lora, I hung a toe on a tree stump and pretty much just fell on her. Luckily she held me up so I didn't hit the ground.


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