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Benton MacKaye
Trail Assn.

BMTA Activities Calendar

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Listed below are the scheduled activities of the BMTA for 2015.  Work trips will be held on the second Saturday of the month in Georgia and on the fourth Saturday in Tennessee/North Carolina.  Recreational outings (Fun Hikes) are planned on other weekends to avoid scheduling conflicts with work trips and are set up as hike leaders become available.  Videos of previous hikes can be found on YouTube at

All Are Welcome

The BMTA welcomes all who would like to participate in any scheduled activity.  Members and non-members alike are encouraged to join in; no experience is necessary.


Recurring Monthly Events

  • 2nd Saturday - Georgia Work Trips - coordinated by Barry Allen
  • 3rd Saturday - Fun Public Hike - coordinated by Ralph Heller
  • 4th Saturday - Tennessee/North Carolina Work Trips - coordinated by Tracy Sheffield (Rick Harris backup)

      Planned Activities for 2015
      MonthDateLocation & Details
      April  April 11 GA Work Trip: Please join us on Saturday, April 11th as we continue our reroute of Fall Branch Falls. This reroute is tough one, and I can guarantee a good nights’ sleep at the end of the day!! Meet for breakfast at 8:00 at Big Mommas Country Cooking and General Store in Cherry Log (across from the Pink Pig). Or meet at Fall Branch Falls parking area at 9:00. From Big Mommas, we’ll take Rock Creek Road on into Fall Branch. We have a few people from the Blue Ridge area that will be stopping at the Village Restaurant for breakfast; please feel free to join them at the Village if that is more convenient. From Blue Ridge, take Aska Rd to Stanley Creek Road and Fall Branch. A call or e-mail to let us know you are coming is most welcome (it helps us plan for the right tools and safety equipment), but is certainly not required.
      Trip leader for the day is Barry Allen (770-294-7384) or
      First-timers are most welcome! For what to expect, what to wear, what to bring, go to
      WEATHER POSTPONEMENT: If weather forces a change of plans, the trip will NOT be cancelled in most cases. Instead we will simply postpone the trip for one week. Because of the changeable nature of North Georgia weather we wait as long as possible before postponing. Usually the decision is made early Friday evening and circulated immediately by email.
        April 12-16 Spring Hike Week at Fontana Village: 
      Numerous hikes offered during the week. Check for updated information.
        April 17 Grassy Mountain Fire Tower, Songbird Loop and Lake Conasauga Loop: 
      Length: Grassy Mountain, Songbird Loop & Conasauga Loop - 6 miles, moderate
      Songbird Loop and Conasauga Loop - 2.9 miles, easy
      Hike Description: A good tour of the remote Lake Conasauga area adjacent to the sourthern boundary of the Cohutta Wilderness. Afterward we will have a potluck picnic at the Lake Conasauga Pavilion. We plan to have two hikes, the moderate trip to Grassy Mountain fire tower and an Easy Trek hike of the Songbird Loop and Lake Conasauga Loop trails.
      For more information and to register for the hike meeting time and location contact Hike Leader Mike Pilvinsky, email oldsoldier67 AT or phone (706) 889-5254.
        April 19-24 Trail-A-Thon:  Cancelled for Spring and will be reset for the Fall.
        April 25 Chainsaw Certification: Blue Ridge Ranger District
      Contact: Valencia Morris, 706-745-6928, vcmorris AT
      May  May 1 Lady Slipper Hike: 
      Length: 6.2 miles – moderate
      Hike Description: This hike starts at the Stanley Gap trailhead off Stanley Creek Road. The first half is mostly uphill and the last half is all downhill. That time of year there should be a large lady slipper display for several miles on the second half of the hike. Also there should be many wild azaleas in bloom.
      To register for the hike and get meeting time and location contact Hike Leader Joy Forehand, jwfbrga AT or call 706-946-0336.
        May 13 Hike to Toccoa River suspension Bridge: 
      Length: 3.5 miles out with car shuttle return - easy/moderate
      Hike Description: Hike on BMT from GA Highway 60 over Tooni Mountain to 260 foot pedestrian suspension bridge. Bring lunch for picnic at the bridge and lots of water to drink.
      For more information and to register for this hike contact Hike Leader Ken Cissna - kcissna AT or (706) 636-1741
      June  June 6 National Trails Day Celebration: 
      In Georgia: Meet with BMTA, GATC and Mountain High Hikers at Pavilion 2 in Vogel State park for morning trail maintenance or hikes - your choice. Then a potluck picnic for lunch.
      For more information click here or contact Ralph Heller - phone (770)235-9760.

      In Tennessee/North Carolina: Three hikes are planned - meet at Tellico Plaines Town Square at 9 am. or
      Trail maintenance at Towee Creek - meet at Quinn Springs Campground shelter at 9 am.Campground is on Highway 30 west of Reliance, TN.
      For more information, contact Richard Harris - harrisri AT or phone (423)253-6358.
        June 12 Easy Trek Hike to Turtletown Falls: 
      Length: Approx. 4 miles - moderate/easy
      Hike Description: On this hike, you get two waterfalls for the price of one hike. The first mile is an easy walk on an old road bed along Turtletown Creek. Then, leaving the road bed the trail follows beside the creek until there is a steep descent using switchbacks to get to the base of the first falls. The hike to the second falls is about a 3/4 mile easy walk. At the second falls, we will eat lunch. After lunch, the hike back follows the old road bed up Shinbone Ridge which overlooks the Hiawassee River. Bring plenty of water.
      For more information on this hike and to register in order to get meeting time and location, contact Hike Leader Sara Bland - jsbland AT or call (678)493-2649.

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