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Official Website of the North Carolina Bartram Trail Society

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ACT: Following in Cherokee footsteps across WNC

April 27th, 2016 by NC BTS

Fullscreen capture 4272016 12506 PM

Many thanks to Jim Kautz for sharing a link to this article in the Asheville Citizen Times which highlights the work of NCBTS volunteer and board member, Lamar Marshall:

FRANKLIN – Crossing the green field and climbing the hill, Lamar Marshall stops and unfolds his topo map from his backpack. This wind-whipped summit overlooking a bend of the Little Tennessee River is not a natural feature, but a mound made by the land’s ancient inhabitants in a town once called Cowee.

Standing where the Cherokee council house once held a sacred fire, Marshall can point out the path below, winding beside native canebrakes into a nearly forgotten past of the Cowee Valley.

For the last eight years, Marshall has been following in the footsteps of the Cherokee along trails that once linked dozens of their ancient towns along this river and across Western North Carolina.

“These are arteries into the past that connect us with the culture of this place,” Marshall said. “When I walk along these trails, I am seeing the exact same views, the same mountains that natives have seen for thousands of years. We’re standing in the same spot that William Bartram or Dragging Canoe may have stood.”

Continue reading…

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The New NC Bartram Trail Map is now available!

April 6th, 2016 by NC BTS

Bartram-Map-Small

The NC Bartram Trail Society is proud to announce that our new, updated trail map is now available for purchase.

We’ve incorporated your feedback and suggestions into this full-color map which is now printed on waterproof/tearproof paper.

The new map includes:

  • An overview of the 80+ miles of the yellow-blazed Bartram Trail in North Carolina, the blue-blazed side trails and all topographic features
  • Also shows the Appalachian Trail from below Wayah Bald to Cheoah Bald as well as the Appletree loop trails and many other area side trails
  • Elevation profiles of the entire length of the NC BT; USGS topo contours at 50-foot intervals
  • Scale: 1:35,000; mile-by-mile readings for both North-to-South and South-to-North hiking
  • GPS coordinates for BT trail heads
  • Area places of interest: scenic vistas, waterfalls, historic markers, picnic areas and campgrounds
  • Many natural history facts about the biodiversity of native flora and fauna along the BT, about William Bartram and about the NC Bartram Trail Society

You can order a copy of the new map today via our online store!

Thank you!

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July 2th Nantahala Bypass Release

June 30th, 2015 by NC BTS

Duke Energy has shared a reminder of this Thursday’s Nantahala Bypass Flow Release. Hikers in the vicinity should note this in their plans:

Nantahala Hydro Station generation is planned to be on at 9 a.m. and will remain on until the bypass flow passes the powerhouse around 9 p.m.  This is per the agreement with the NC Wildlife Resources Commission to provide mixing of waters.  The flow will be the natural baseflow plus 250 cfs, plus approximately 600 cfs from the turbine at the put-ins from around 5 p.m. until 9 p.m.  As always, the general public and members of the rafting/outfitters community on the Nantahala River are strongly encouraged to monitor the USGS Streamflow Gauge at Hewitt for the most current flow information. Please be aware that flows from Duke Energy facilities, and the natural inflow will be greater than when only the generating unit is running.

http://waterdata.usgs.gov/nc/nwis/uv/?site_no=03505550&PARAmeter_cd=00065,00060

NC Bartram Trail trail maintenance manager, Tim Warren notes that the only place the release will affect Bartram Trail hikers is at the concrete ford where the trail crosses. If traveling north and encounter high water take a right at the wooden steps on Nantahala dam road for about a half mile then turn left on Junaluska road. Walk this road for about a mile to the Appletree entrance on right and the Bartram Trail will continue down the river.

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Join us for an afternoon wildflower hike, May 3, 2015

April 30th, 2015 by NC BTS

Dr. Dan Pittillo, Professor Emeritus, Western Carolina University

Dr. Dan Pittillo, Professor Emeritus, Western Carolina University

The NCBTS is sponsoring a wildflower hike Sunday afternoon 2:00-6:00 p.m. May 3, 2015 to be led by Dr. Dan Pittillo.

At Jones Knob spring flora is in early “mountain green-up” with Trillium, Solomon’s plume, White baneberry, and several others now blooming. In the next couple of weeks, the trail south of Whiterock Gap will be “flaming yellow to orange to red-orange” azaleas and on Little Fishhawk you can be rewarded with Purple rhododendron and Calico bush to name a few of our Bartram May bushes.

Join us for an afternoon hike between the Jones Gap to Whiterock Gap on the NC Bartram Trail!

If you would like to join, please email:

info@ncbartramtrail.org

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2015 Bartram Trail Conference

December 28th, 2014 by NC BTS

Members of the Bartram Trail Conference visiting the site of Cowee, north of Franklin, North Carolina. (Credit: Bartram Trail Conference)

Members of the Bartram Trail Conference visiting the site of Cowee, north of Franklin, North Carolina. (Credit: Bartram Trail Conference)

From our friends at the Bartram Trail Conference:

The 2015 meeting of the Bartram Trail Conference will be held on the shores of William Bartram’s beloved St. Johns River in Palatka, Florida. John and William Bartram first paddled up the St. Johns River in December of 1765 and we will convene there almost on the exact date. The dates for the conference are October 16–18, 2015. The conference will be held in the Ravine Gardens State Park and Palatka’s riverfront park. This promises to be a very exciting conference.

More details will be available here in March of 2015. Plan on signing up early, there will be a limit to attendees. You may contact Sam Carr at 386-937-3901 or scarr304@aol.com with questions.

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Join us for an afternoon wildflower hike, May 4, 2014

March 24th, 2014 by NC BTS

Dr. Dan Pittillo, Professor Emeritus, Western Carolina University

Dr. Dan Pittillo, Professor Emeritus, Western Carolina University

The NCBTS is sponsoring a wildflower hike Sunday afternoon 2:00-6:00 p.m. May 4 to be led by Dr. Dan Pittillo.

There will still be some later Trilliums flowering and the “flaming yellow to orange to red-orange” azaleas should be making their show.

Join us for an afternoon hike between the Jones Gap to Whiterock Gap on the NC Bartram Trail!

If you would like to join, please email:

info@ncbartramtrail.org

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Come join the NCBTS at the April Fool’s Trail Days in Franklin

March 24th, 2014 by NC BTS

The NC Bartram Trail Society will have a booth Saturday, March 29 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the April Fools Hiking Day in Franklin. Come join us or help maintain booth!

Click here to read the full schedule of events at the April Fool’s Trail Days in Franklin, NC.

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Nantahala Hiking Club and NC Bartram Trail Society Team Up to Celebrate National Trails Day

May 10th, 2013 by NC BTS

Wayah Bald Tower

Two local trail organizations will join together to celebrate National Trails Day on June 1. The Nantahala Hiking Club and Bartram Trail Society have announced a hike for that day.

Hikers will begin at Wayah Bald at ten o’clock and follow the trail to Wine Springs Bald. This section of trails is shared by the Appalachian Trail and Bartram Trail and is three miles round trip.

Dr. Dan Pittillo, a botanist and a founder of the Bartram Trail will lead the hike.

A special feature will be a “Kids Hike,” led by Mary Bennett, Appalachian Trail Community Ambassador with the Nantahala Hiking Club. Ms. Bennett will discuss tips for planning hikes with families. Included in the Kids Hike will be such activities as a “Nature in Living Color Search,” writing a group Place Poem, and “A Fistful of Sounds.”

Hikers may continue a few miles farther to either Sawmill Gap (on the Bartram Trail) or Wayah Crest (on the Appalachian Trail).

The Bartram Trail Society has for the last 35 years built and maintained the Bartram Trail across almost 80 miles of mountains between the Georgia line and Cheoah Bald. The Nantahala Hiking Club, the Franklin based Appalachian Trail maintaining club, maintains sixty miles of the Appalachian Trail across Macon County, sponsors hikes every weekend, provides hiking support to local schools, and supports Franklin, NC as a designated Appalachian Trail Community.

National Trails Day, sponsored by the American Hiking Society annually brings together outdoor enthusiasts across the country. The celebration encourages all Americans to connect with local outdoor clubs, businesses, community groups, and parks and recreation departments as well as federal land managing agencies to experience, appreciate, and share the natural places they cherish.

More than 2,000 nationwide events will take place.

“Twenty years ago, American Hiking built National Trails Day around the idea that for one day each year we should come together outdoors and give back to our favorite trails. Since then, people from all walks of life have been coming out in increasing numbers on NTD to celebrate our trails and the great outdoors,” said Gregory Miller, American Hiking Society president.

The event is open to the public. Hikers are urged to bring their lunches and water and to wear good hiking shoes. The trail is moderate to easy in difficulty.

For more information, contact Jim Kautz of the Bartram Trail Society (jrkautz [at] frontier.com, 828-524-6593) or Bill Van Horn of the Nantahala Hiking Club (828-369-1983).

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National Trails Day Celebration: June 1

January 14th, 2013 by NC BTS

Wayah Bald Tower

Hike with members of both the Bartram Trail Society and the Nantahala Hiking Club to celebrate National Trails Day.

The BTS is partnering with the Nantahala Hiking Club to sponsor a hike on National Trails Day, June 1, 2013.

We will meet at Wayah Bald at 10:00 a.m. and hike to Wine Spring Bald for lunch. The route is about two miles long and descends less than a thousand feet before climbing a thousand feet to Wine Spring Bald. Those who want a longer hike may proceed another two miles (downhill) to Sawmill Gap.

This event is the first organized collaboration between the two clubs in recent years. The Nantahala Hiking Club maintains the Appalachian Trail in southwestern North Carolina and conducts numerous hikes each year. The trail from Wayah Bald to Wine Springs Bald is part of the only route shared by both the Appalachian Trail and the Bartram Trail.

Wayah Bald two of three prominent peaks in the Nantahala that scholars think may be the place that William Bartram described asthe most elevated peak; from whence I beheld with rapture and astonishment, a sublimely awful scene of power and magnificence, a world of mountains piled upon mountains.” The third candidate for Bartram’s “most elevated peak” is Burningtown Bald.

The American Hiking Society has sponsored National Trails Day on the first Saturday in June each year since 1993. For more information, see http://www.americanhiking.org/ntd/info/.

Directions:  From Franklin NC
From intersection of U.S. Hwy-64 W and U.S. Hwy-23/441 North in Franklin take Hwy-64 W towards Murphy, NC for 3.8 miles to “Old Murphy Rd.(SR 1448) on your right (see Wayah Bald Sign).
After you take the exit, continue down the hill for just under 0.2 miles to Wayah Road (SR 1310) on your left (“Loafers Glory” gas station will be at the intersection of Old Murphy Rd. and Wayah Rd, so you’ll know where to turn).
Continue on Wayah Rd. for 9.1 miles where you’ll find yourself at FR (Forest Road) #69 on the right, at Wayah Gap. Take this gravel road for another 4.4 miles to the Wayah Bald Area and Lookout Tower..

Category: Announcements, News and Events, On the Trail | No Comments »

NCBTS helps Mountains To Sea Trail explore options

December 9th, 2012 by NC BTS

(Source: The Franklin Press)

North Carolina’s Mountains-to-Sea Trail may lead travelers through Macon County.

Conservation and trail group representatives and citizens met Monday to investigate a possible alternate route of the State’s Mountains-to-Sea Trail that would pass through the Needmore Game Lands bordering Macon and Swain counties.

[…]Representatives from The Wilderness Society, the NC Bartram Trail Society and FMST joined the Monday hike that traversed a five-mile stretch of the proposed route through Needmore from Sawmill Creek to Brush Creek in Swain County.

[…]The proposed route through Macon County could continue along existing trails and old roadbeds through the 4,500-acre Needmore Tract which winds along the Little Tennessee River (North Carolina purchased Needmore in 2004 to protect it as state game lands).

Read the full article at The Franklin Press website.

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