May 2, 2006
|This week's hike was on the Appalachian Trail from Dick's Creek Gap to Plumorchard Shelter and back. This is a beautiful hike in mountains of extreme North Georgia. This portion of the Appalachian trail is in excellent condition and it features lots of elevation change as you walk over Little Bald Knob, past Cowart Gap over an un-named knob and gap on over Buzzard Knob and down to Bull Gap and up over another ridge and then a long descent down to Plumorchard Gap and shelter.
HIKERS - Melissa Anderson, Phil Brownrigg, Wayne Miller, Bruce O'Connor, Jeanne O'Connor, Donna Presley, Tony Presley, Dan Ross, Doug Russell, Bryan Lambert, David Whitaker, and Geri Whitaker.
TRAIL INFO. - The trail is in excellent condition and is considered moderately difficult due to elevation change.
Total hiking distance today, approx. 9.6 miles.
Directions: Take Hwy. 76 W from Clayton, GA toward Hiawassee, GA. and drive approximately 15 to 18 miles and look for the Appalachian Trail crossing signs. The parking lot is on the right.
Another great day for a hike! Partly cloudy, temperatures ranging from the mid 50's to the upper 60's F.
FLOWERS IN BLOOM: Violet Wood Sorrel, Frasier Magnolia, Dogwood, Striped Maple, Flame Azalea, Pink ladyslippers, Showy Orchis, White Baneberry, Red Baneberry, Blue Cohosh, Bluet, Star Chickweed, Robin's Plaintain, Pepperroot, Toothwort, Wood Anemone, Squawroot, Catesby's Trillium, Lobed Violet, Halberd-leafed Violet, Sweet White Violet, Purple Violet, Round-leafed Yellow Violet, Wild Strawberry, Dewberry, Wild Geranium, Nodding Mandarin, Oilnut, Small-flowered Bellwort, Perfoliated Bellwort, Cancerroot, Rattlesnake Weed, Foamflower, Pussytoes, Heart-leafed Golden Alexander, Sweet Shrub, Hooked Buttercup and Wood Vetch.
BIRDS IDENTIFIED: Indigo Bunting, Wood Thrush, Titmouse, Hooded Warbler, Oven Bird, Red Eyed Vireo, Towhee, Hermit Thrush, Black Throated Blue Warbler, Veery, Rose Breasted Grosbeak, Parula, Crow, Pileated Woodpecker, Scarlet Tanager, Yellow Warbler, Blue Jay, Black and White Warbler, Great Crested Flycatcher, Carolina Wren, Kentucky Warbler, Summer Tanager, Turkey Vulture
OTHER FAUNA: Black Bear as we hiked out and we saw the bear (we assume the same one) in the same area on the way back.
Today's starting point - Dick's Creek Gap - west of Clayton, GA.
Nice mountain views along the way!
Trail signs at Plumorchard Gap.
The spring at the Plumorchard Gap Shelter.
Our lunch spot for the day!
We spotted this Indigo Bunting along the trail! (12X zoom)
We met this nice group of women hikers from Dallas, TX.
"TOWN hikers" - Texas Outdoors Woman Network.
Some of today's wildflower pics. (top left - clockwise)
Pink Lady Slipper, Flame Azalea, Catesby's Trillium, Showy Orchis.
Probably the most abundant plant of the day. One to be avoided!....
(Toxicodendron radicans) Poison Ivy!
The OFHC gang for today's hike. (l-r) Doug Russell, Geri Whitaker, David Whitaker, Jeanne O'Connor, Bruce O'Connor, "Bo" the trail dog, Wayne Miller, Bryan Lambert, Phil Brownrigg, Melissa Anderson, Donna Presley, Dan Ross, and Tony Presley.