Laurel Fork Falls, from Dennis Cove

Sunday the 19th was a great lazy hike to Laurel Falls. There was a light sprinkling rain about mid-hike cooling us off. As it had rained recently, the falls were bursting with water. Along the trail we found a multitude of edible and inedible mushrooms, including a few chanterelles and some very large tawny milk caps.

Change of Date for Bluestone River Trip — New Date 6/5-7/2015

Because of tram problems Mt. Creek Lodge will not open until June 5th weekend. If you are holding reservation for May 22nd your reservation will automatically be transferred to June 5th. If you need to cancel and get a refund of your deposit call Pipestem State Park.

The water flow that late in the Spring may not be optimal. The 65 year average flow for that date is about 380 cfs. The minimum flow needed for the trip is about 250 cfs. If the flow on the Bluestone is too low or too high we will plan to do something on the New or Greenbrier River.

For more information call: Terry Dougherty 423-502-5177.

Rental Equipment Checkout, March 18, 2015, 11:00 am – 1:00 pm

Rental Equipment Checkout, March 18, 2015, 11:00 am – 1:00 pm Contact: Terry Dougherty, Location: Eastman Employee Center, Rm 112 and Lobby It’s time to ensure the Club’s rental gear is ready for another year. We will evaluate all the equipment and propose necessary repairs or replacements. A light lunch of pizza, veggie tray, cookies, soft drinks and bottled water will be provided. Come and go as your time permits. Many hands make light work. Please help if you can…

Two New Rental Items Added to HCC Rentals

A Pocketrocket ultralight ,fast burning, canister stove has been added to the TEHCC rental equipment. The stove requires the user to provide a MSR type canister of compressed gas fuel. Any unused fuel cannot be returned to Recreation.

Also, a SteriPEN UV disinfection system is now available. A pint of clear water can be disinfected in 48 seconds. About 40 pints can be processed before recharging the battery is required. The weight of the unit is 74 g.

Bluestone River Trip, 36th Year

What: Bluestone River Trip, 36th Year
When: May 22-24, 2015
Where: Pipestem Resort State Park, Pipestem, WV, United States
Description: The annual Bluestone River Trip (36th Anniversary) is scheduled for May 22-24, 2015. We will stay at the beautiful Pipestem State Park (Mountain Creek Lodge). Our trip leader has reserved a block of rooms, please call 800-CALL-WVA FREE (ask for Pipestem State Park / Mountain Creek Lodge) and reserve your room for Friday and Saturday. To secure one of the clubs block rooms, reservations must be made by May 8. We plan to paddle the scenic Bluestone River both days. This is a Class III trip the first day and Class I the second day. You can skip the second day, if you like. Other options include family camping at the state park campground and/or driving up on Saturday morning. This is a GREAT trip with a lot of family fun, scenic river and very nice lodging. In addition to the paddling, Ed Montgomery will once again be in charge of HAPPY HOUR and libation coordination on Saturday night and is going to make this one special. Please contact the trip leader (Terry Dougherty, 423-502-5177) if you are planning to attend the trip.

The Search for Wild Ponies of Grayson Highlands

Event Date: October 9, 2014

Garry S. Luttrell, reporting

Our son Billy, his wife Joy, and seven kids, are becoming missionaries, serving the Caribbean Ministries Association of Chattanooga. They have heard me talk about Grayson Highlands and the ponies. They decided to add seeing the ponies to their “Bucket List” of things to do before they leave the country. The original plan was to leave Joy and the three youngest at our house; but at the last minute, they decided that everyone would go, even 10 month old Zeke. And, it was a good decision: the Fall colors were great, it was a lovely day, we saw lots of ponies, as seen in the photos. As we were driving on HW 58 back to Tennessee, we noticed a black cloud in the western sky. We were told that the only gas station for miles around in any direction was at Whitetop Mtn, but before we could pump enough gas to make it home, the sky opened-up, and you guessed it – it rained by the buckets full. On the next day, the rain, forced us to postpone the next “Bucket List” item: Canoeing on Warrior’s Path Lake.

Trip Report – Keokee Lake Loop Trail

Reporting: Terry Dougherty
Trip Date: September 21, 2014

We started our four mile hike on the eastern side of the lake in very light rain.
The trail was in poor condition with lots of over growth, 15 or more blow downs,
many foot log bridges rotted out, but the trail tread was good. There were very
limited views of the lake from that side. After 3 mi. of borderline bushwhacking we
came to the dam with very nice views of the lake. The trail was well marked, but the last serious maintenance was probably ten or more years ago for that side of the lake.
The mile of trail from the dam back to the starting point on the western side was in very good condition with nice views of the lake. A few ducks was the only wildlife we saw.
This area is isolated and if one wanted to hike without seeing anyone this might
be a good place. Hikers were Mary Tennant ,Thresa and Terry Dougherty.

Trip Report – Pinnacle Mountain Fire Tower

Reporting: Barry Griggs
Trip date: 10/19/14

What a beautiful day for a fall hike in the mountains of east Tennessee! We honestly could not have ordered a more perfect day. Our illustrious group of seven gathered at the trailhead to begin our nine-mile round-trip up to Pinnacle Mountain Fire Tower. The restrooms in the relatively new building at the trailhead provide a convenient beginning in preparation for the lengthy hike.
Several other hikers and bikers were also taking advantage of the beautiful day to get out and enjoy God’s creation. The trails many switchbacks make the trail probably the most doable 4.5-mile hike up a mountain anywhere in these parts. It can be completed by even the most casual hiker with a few rest stops on the way if necessary. While leaves are on the trees, the trail is shaded the whole way. The 360-degree views from the top of the tower were spectacular with the reds and yellows really outstanding! Although overall peak color was probably just a few days away, there were many trees that were already in full color. The bright blue sky and clear air allowed maximum visibility for many, many miles.
The hike downhill back to the parking area went very quickly and our group headed for home with mental pictures of beautiful views and several new friends among fellow hikers and lovers of the outdoors. Hikers were Zhufang Liu, Junjia Liu, Lin Liu, Jackie Liu, Jinghua Yuan, Jim Floyd and Barry Griggs.

Trip Report-Tweetsie Trail

Barry Griggs reporting
Trip date: September 28, 2014

On a warm, but comfortable Sunday afternoon our hike began at the trailhead at the intersection of Legion Street and Alabama Street in Johnson City, TN. The parking lot at the trailhead was overflowing, but parking was available in other nearby gravel areas. The trail is obviously very popular with walkers, runners and bikers, especially on weekends, as we were never out of sight of one or more people. With two cancellations and one no-show, this became a Griggs/Metcalf family hike. My wife Beverly and I were joined by our daughter, Jill Metcalf and her husband, Josh Metcalf. We walked out two miles and back to make it a four-mile hike. The trail has markers every 0.2 miles, so it’s very easy to make the walk/ride whatever distance you like. The finished portion of the trail from JC to Elizabethton is 4.5 miles. It should be a very easy walk for most anyone, with a slight uphill grade when returning to JC. The trail is a very nice addition to our region.