HIKE 2 boysSougahoagdee

Wild South hikes in Bankhead National Forest

Saturday, April 27

9:00 a.m. at  Warrior Mountains Trading Company

Group sizes are limited and advance sign-up is required.  Click HERE to sign up!

Pick your hike from these two great choices:

Flint Creek Botanical Area and Indian Tomb Hollow glade

Leader:  Botanist Kevin England

Distance:  1 mile roundtrip, approx.

Rating:  Moderately easy

All ages welcome

If you are a wildflower lover, this is the hike for you!  Flint Creek Botanical Area is one of Bankhead’s richest, most diverse sites for plant species.  Springtime, it is a wonderland.  Under Kevin England’s expert guidance, this short hike will offer a wealth of botanical revelations.  After Flint Creek, the group will travel a few miles to the entrance to Indian Tomb Hollow on Alexander Motorway and have a look at the limestone glade there.  This glade is home to rare plants that depend on the limestone glade eco-system.

There is no trail through most of the botanical area.  The terrain is flat, rough, rooty and rocky as you would expect a forest floor to be.

Caney Creek Falls

Leader:  Janice Barrett

Distance:  Approx. 3 miles roundtrip

Rating:  Moderately challenging

All ages welcome

The South Fork of Caney Creek contains some of the most beautiful canyon scenery in the Bankhead, including Caney Creek Falls.  The 1 mile hike in to the falls is on an old closed road, downhill going in, a heart-pounding uphill most of the way out.  There is a briefly precipitous climb down into the canyon.  Once in, the hike continues downstream from the waterfall, following the creek deeper into the sandstone canyon on a narrow, rough trail.  There will be several shallow creek crossings.

Footwear must be sturdy with soles that are built to provide reliable traction on slippery, steep, wet terrain.  Recommended:  wool socks, long pants.

For both hikes:

Bring a backpack lunch, snacks, drinking water (and plenty of it!).  Pack rain gear if rain is in the forecast.  If serious reaction to insect stings is a concern, remember your Epi-Pen.

***A word about insect and tick repellent***

We find that most sprays, such as Repel and Off (DEET products), etc.  simply do not work for keeping ticks away.  Once the spray is used, that is the only scent anyone in the group is going to smell the rest of the day and all that beautiful, clean, purity of the forest air is completely negated.   The exception is a product called Permanone or Sawyers (Permethrin products), the kind you spray only on your clothing – and not while you’re wearing those clothes – 4 hours before you put them on.  It it odorless and really works.  It flat out kills any tick that comes into contact with it.  Personally, I use even that very sparingly and infrequently, only during the heaviest tick-times,  and carry a small roll of duct tape with me to pat off the ticks as I spot/feel them if there is a quantity of them.  If you feel strongly pro- spray, please go easy on it and spray at the trailhead.

After signing up, meet at the Warrior Mountains Trading Company at the intersection of Highways 33 and 36, two miles south of Moulton (click on map link above) at 9:00 a.m.  Park on the south end of the building (far, far away from the diesel pump) and come into the store.  Head for the Wild South picnic table toward the back of the store.  This is where we will gather at 9:00 to meet the leaders.

Wild South hikes are free of charge, but donations are gratefully accepted and put to work right here in our beloved Bankhead National Forest!