View Full Version : Hazel Creek Trip

07-10-2009, 01:07 PM
I am planning my first trip to Hazel Creek with one of my fishing buddies. We will be canoeing from Cable Creek Campground. I have a few questions:

Does anyone know approximately how long the canoe trip will take?
How is the fishing this time of year and what seems to be working?
Where can I get a smokie mountain cart and is it possible to rent one anywhere?

I am psyched about getting outdoors and enjoying a new adventure.

(Go Dawgs!)

07-10-2009, 03:18 PM

Last fall my wife and I spent our first night at 86 then traveled up to 83 for two nights. On the way up someone told us there was a party of 13 on horseback at 83. We found no one when we arrived and didnít see another person for two nights. Very nice!

I was not that impressed with 85. It's right in the middle of the trail and could easily be too crowded.

I would pick 84 over 83. The two sites are not that far apart.

I had asked one guy at the marina if they rented carts...he had no clue what I was talking about. He might have been new or a seasonal employee though.

I plan to head back over in late September or early November. Still kicking around the idea of coming down to 82 and spending a couple nights before catching the shuttle.

If "Go Dawgs!" refers to the Georgia Bulldogs please disregard everything I said.

07-10-2009, 03:43 PM
Thanks for the info GrouseMan77. I decided to make reservations at site 83 since we will be trout fishing for 3 days. This way we don't have to break down camp. I called the Fontana Marina regarding the smoky mountain carts and they told me they knew a man who would rent carts. He doesn't rent them anymore. Too much trouble keeping them operational. I guess we will "hunker down" and haul our equipment in like real men.

Yes, I am refering to those Georgia Bulldogs.

(woof, woof)

07-10-2009, 06:59 PM
troutdawg, Check out the info on this thread:

The canoe trip should take 1.5 hrs with calm water and a lot more than that with winds. Be prepared, its not as close as it appears (but it beats $50 per head if you have your own canoe...)

I stayed at 85 in May and like GM77 said, its right in the middle of the trail. There are some nice sites away from the water on the other side of the trail that are much more private. 85 is 3 miles from the TH and 84 is 4.5. If it were me I would stay at 84. It has a spring nearby, is in the middle of some good water. Camping beyond 84 really isn't necessary, you can hike with a flyrod quicker than you can with a pack...

...oh, and.......Go Jackets

07-10-2009, 08:01 PM

I appreciate the info on the canoe trip. I was estimating 3 hours and glad to hear that it may only be 1.5 hours. I read the thread that you sent earlier today. It contained some very useful information. Do you know how Hazel is fishing this time of year?

(Hunker Down You Hairy Dawgs!)

old tom
07-10-2009, 08:44 PM
I'll throw my $.02 worth in (Go Cocks, although I'm not exactly sure where they are going lately)

I've never done it, but I've heard 2 hours for the paddle. Guess that puts it in the ballpark. 84 is, hands down, the nicest campsite. But if you're just sleeping and eating, I prefer 83 as it's closer to Bone Valley (hint) and upper Hazel. 83 is a horse camp, but you can find some sites over the ridge from the horses if there are any there.

Never been this time of the year, but you've got to go a ways to get any elevation. Therefore, I'd go with whatever Byron says is working in his daily report.

Jim Casada
07-13-2009, 12:47 PM
The paddling times you have been given are fairly accurate, although I would put it at two-plus hours. For one thing, Fontana is almost at full pond, and that makes for a longer trip. One note of caution. I would try to make my lake transit early in the day. That way there's much less likelihood of getting caught in a thunderstorm, something you don't want in a canoe. This is Fontana at its widest, and I can attest, from personal experience, that being out in the middle in whitecaps is a scary scenario.

Bone Valley would be my choice for a campsite, as opposed to the Sawdust Pile, although the fact that it allows horses is a major negative. However, as another post noted, there is a separate, upper section where horses aren't supposed to be. But evidence from a trip there in May left all too ample indication that "aren't supposed to be" and reality are two different things.

As for flies, this time of year it's hard to beat a 'hopper (or stimulator) and a dropper, although if you are a big trout hunter give some thought to streamers. Jim Casada

07-13-2009, 09:54 PM
The carts made for hauling deer do a pretty good job, lightweight and can carry a couple hundred pounds. Hey Jim, when is that new book a comin' out??

Jim Casada
07-14-2009, 02:52 PM
Jim--Thanks for asking aobut the book. It is finished and I have chosen a printer. Once a few little things are completed (contract signing, deciding on template for cover, etc.) it will go to press. If all goes well I will have delivery by the end of August. The book ended up being 450 pages (that includes lengthy sections of stream graphs, color and black-and-white photos, an annotated bibliography, and a folding map, a Foreword by Nick Lyons, and other features), but upwards of 375 pages is detailed text with every major stream in the Park covered in detail. In addition, virtually every minor one gets at least some attention, and if you care anything about the Park's past, there's a lot of history as well. The book will be available in paperback and hardback. A preliminary guesstimate on price will be $23.95 for the paperback and $34.95 for the hardback. Incidentally, the head honcho of this Forum, BB himself (and if anyone can make a literary connection to the use of BB they get a gold star), has been extremely helpful. Among other things, he wrote a most gracious encomium (one of those $10 words meaning a statement of praise or a blurb) for the back cover. Jim Casada

07-14-2009, 02:56 PM
Would that be birthday boy?

Jim Casada
07-14-2009, 06:41 PM
Aaron--Nope, it isn't Birthday Boy, although that's a good guess and something which never crossed my sometimes feeble mind. The use of the word "literary" was intended to provide a clue, and another one is that the two things BB has in common with Byron B is initials and a consuming passion for the outdoors. Maybe that will be tip enouigh for someone, especially if they are an avid reader. Jim Casada