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View Full Version : Deep Creek BCCS #55 Trip Report 5/22-23 Pic Heavy


Drugcop4
05-28-2011, 01:21 PM
After reading Mac's post my wife and I decided to make our backpaking trip on Deep Creek and camp at #55. We set out across the mountain from Walland, Tn at about 5:30 a.m. on May 22. The drive was not bad and the scenery was nice. The road construction slowed us down some, however it was not a horrible delay.

We found our way through Bryson City and parked. We started up the mountain about 9:15 a.m. We knew the trip was about 7 miles and had heard the description that the trail went "up and down some hills".

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Whomever described this hike as that needs to be beaten. For this fat man the extreme up and downs were killers.

http://i279.photobucket.com/albums/kk122/drugcop4/GSMNP%20Backpacking%202011/DSCF2119.jpg

We made it to CS#55 at about 2:00p.m. and set camp. I was not impressed with the trail or the site. I have nothing against the horseback campers but the trail was trashed and the camp site was not much better.

I was able to start fishing that afternoon and for the next couple of days did not do to bad. I used drys and nymphs fishing with duns and bead head zug bugs.


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Several other fish were caught but I did not get enough photos. I caught the largest on Nymphs.

On the morning of the second day I told my wife I was surprised we had not seen bear sign so she took care of that ...

http://i279.photobucket.com/albums/kk122/drugcop4/GSMNP%20Backpacking%202011/DSCF2155.jpg

She also decided that she could make camp biscuits and gravy, and did a stellar job with what we had. No extra weight and a great start to the day.

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So on Tuesday we began our hike out. At about the 2 mile mark I rolled my ankle. I heard a pop and a rip and knew that it was bad. I forced myself to walk out the last five miles with pack and all. When I got to the trail head I went straight for the water to soak my foot.

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After a short drive we headed to the Leconte Emergency room in Sevierville.

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The result of the trip was that I was told I backpacked out the 5 miles on a bimalleolar fracture (both sides of my ankle broken).

http://i279.photobucket.com/albums/kk122/drugcop4/GSMNP%20Backpacking%202011/download.jpg

I am now out of service for the rest of the season, and most likely will have to have surgery when I return home.

I had purchased Korker Torrents for the trip and really did not care for the shoe at all. That is not the reason I hurt my ankle, I just did not think they were that good. I think their boots would be better.

Anyway this is our report. I was not that impressed with the trip for fishing. It was good, but not worth the hike in my opinion.

ifish4wildtrout
05-28-2011, 11:08 PM
Sorry about your ankle, that is not good. That must have been a painful 5 miles hiking like that.

The trail above #60 is not good, in my opinion. I do not think I will ever hike above #60 with a pack again. It is easier for me to camp at #60 and hike up with only a fly rod and then fish.

pineman19
05-28-2011, 11:32 PM
Curious. haven't been up past 60 in nearly 2 years. Have they ever used all the wood that lays by the trail to fix all the deep rut, etc? No beating on horse riding, but there is no doubt that the trail is heavily impacted by horses. If I was going to 55, I would be tempted to start at the top, the trail to 56 is in pretty good shape, of course it's a little steep in the last climb to Newfound Gap rd.

60 isn't a bad site IMO, although 58 was pretty nice and there is some very fine water between 60 and 58.

Neal

deerhunter8725
05-29-2011, 10:55 AM
The worst climb is between 60 and 59. The climbs get easier after that.

Mac
05-31-2011, 08:18 AM
How to put this, Your Kung Fu was not strong. :cool: (just funning with you)

At least this should be one of those trips that you should not soon forget. :rolleyes:

It was an excellent report and pictures, Thanks for sharing. :redface:

flyred06
05-31-2011, 07:09 PM
excellent reporting. sorry to hear about the accident. Better luck next time.

NDuncan
06-01-2011, 09:15 AM
Sorry about the injury! I think a lesson that everyone can take away from this report is when planning a trip, pool a variety of resources for information about the area you intend to go to. Reports from others often aren't enough. The book "hiking trails of the Smokies" is a good one because it shows distances, waypoints, describes many of the crossings and elevation changes with a reasonable amount of accuracy and it is readily available at the parks visitors centers as well as elsewhere. Also studying a good topo map of the trail helps give you some idea about some of the nuances of the particular trail.

It is also important to keep in mind that since we are all different, age wise and physical fitness wise that what one person describes as being relatively flat and easy someone else might consider much more difficult.

Please understand that I'm not saying that you didn't do the proper preparation for your trip and I am not ragging on you in any way. Just in reading two different peoples completely different impressions of the same trail I realized some of the factors that could play a role in someone else getting in way over their head and having a worse accident because they over estimated their abilities.

Hope you heal fast get back on the water soon.

Crockett
06-01-2011, 11:41 AM
I have fished deep creek done the entire trail from top to bottom and from bottom up to 55 several times. The trip up to 60 is flat and easy. Right at 60 you have to go up and over Bumgardner ridge (I have another name for it) and it ain't easy with a pack. I have learned to take hills like that real slow and stop and rest a lot. Kind of goes against instinct which tells you to keep going at a regular pace but will tire you out quick. Pole road 55 is one of the worst sites up there it is a big horse camp. 56 is small and a bit nicer. Sorry about your ankle drugcop hope you heal up and get back out there. I am surprised you rolled it so bad since you were using hiking poles. I think the poles cut down on a lot of injuries like that since they take quite a bit of weight off your ankles and knees and give some extra support there.

joe a
06-01-2011, 03:15 PM
Sorry about your ankle. That sure is a bad way to end the trip, but I enjoyed the pics and I am glad you got into some fish.

A couple of weeks ago there were still a bunch of 6x6s along the side of the trail and so the work has obviously not been done. I would not say that the trail is one of the more aesthetically pleasing, but I will say that once you get into the water Deep Creek sure is nice.

I agree that a good topo map and the knowledge to read them and understand the ups and downs of a trail are important skills to have. If you can generate opinions from a few folks and especially from someone close to your own fitness level that is pretty helpful too. I will be the first to admit that I probably downplay the difficulty of trails.

I would also say that pack weight is another huge factor. I am finding myself forgoing almost any luxury item in my pack and trying to get down to only the essentials plus a little spot of whiskey ;) .

pineman19
06-02-2011, 07:39 AM
Sorry about your ankle. That sure is a bad way to end the trip, but I enjoyed the pics and I am glad you got into some fish.

A couple of weeks ago there were still a bunch of 6x6s along the side of the trail and so the work has obviously not been done. I would not say that the trail is one of the more aesthetically pleasing, but I will say that once you get into the water Deep Creek sure is nice.

I agree that a good topo map and the knowledge to read them and understand the ups and downs of a trail are important skills to have. If you can generate opinions from a few folks and especially from someone close to your own fitness level that is pretty helpful too. I will be the first to admit that I probably downplay the difficulty of trails.

I would also say that pack weight is another huge factor. I am finding myself forgoing almost any luxury item in my pack and trying to get down to only the essentials plus a little spot of whiskey ;) .

Those timbers have been there at least 2 years. Too bad they spent all that money on treated lumber and it's allowed to rot along the sides of the trail. I know they have limited resources, but why buy and put the timber along the trail unless they have to the means to complete the project?

Neal

joe a
06-02-2011, 07:48 AM
Those timbers have been there at least 2 years. Too bad they spent all that money on treated lumber and it's allowed to rot along the sides of the trail. I know they have limited resources, but why buy and put the timber along the trail unless they have to the means to complete the project?

Neal

I just bought a bunch of those for a project at my house. An 8' 6x6 runs $20. there must be a few grand worth of the things lying along the trail.

Drugcop4
06-02-2011, 11:01 AM
I appreciate all of your thoughts and comments. I actually did as much research on this trail as I could, I however did not consult a good topo, a mistake I will not make again. When we selected this trail and campsite, we were wanting remote area and we got it. I was probably most disappointed in the condition of the trail and the campsite at #55. In retrospect we would have been very comfortable at almost all of the sites that we passed on the way up. The water access was better at almost all of the sites. As far as my pack weight, we were about as bare as we are going to be for my comfort level. I am looking at a better tent and sleeping bags, but for as often as we go, we are down to minimum for the expense.

The prognosis on the ankle is good, it is an avulsion fracture with no surgery or hard cast needed. It looks like a cast/boot for a few weeks and some therapy.

JohnH0802
06-08-2011, 12:26 PM
Drugcop,
Glad to hear that your injury was not as severe as first thought. Hope you heal quickly and are able to get back out ther.

Drugcop4
06-23-2011, 05:58 PM
I can happily report that I am already planning a trip in late October. I will most likely not backpack as I doubt time will allow, however I will be in the river, most likely East Prong, and Little river above Elkmont. I have two more weeks of a Frankenstein Boot, then "special" braces on both ankles for the rest of my life.

My Doctor and Family have determined that I am a stubborn *** for backpacking out 5 miles on a double break. I bed I won't do that again. Thanks to all of you for your kind words/wishes.