Hidden away in a remote corner of Kentucky and Tennessee is a geologic and natural wonder. The Big South Fork, overseen by the National Park Service as a natural river and recreation area, is full of incredible features. Waterfalls, soaring cliffs, caves, sandstone arches, forests, rivers, and lakes abound in this truly unique and incredible place. Tucked into this park is another gem: Charit Creek Lodge. At this rustic wilderness retreat, you can take a step back in time and unplug completely in their primitive cabins. This relaxed and beautiful place offers comfortable beds, wood burning stoves, a bathroom and shower house, and a dining room where they serve an amazing dinner and breakfast by oil lamp light. If you are craving a true getaway, great hiking, and amazing scenery, this is the trip for you! Maximum group size: 12
Notify Me Regarding the Next
Not included: Travel to and from Knoxville, TN, alcoholic beverages, guide gratuities and travel insurance
This trip is suitable for any woman who either enjoys hiking or is new to hiking and wants to learn in a safe and fun environment. While the trail ups and downs are not huge (i.e less than 1000 feet at a time), they are continuous and there is little flat. You will be hiking to the Charit Creek Lodge (about 1.1 miles) with your overnight gear for 2 nights. A rating of 3 requires aerobic conditioning, such as walking vigorously up hills, jogging, cross country skiing or stair stepping for 30 - 45 minutes at least 3 - 4 times a week. There are typically 4 to 6 hours of daily activity. Rating: 1 2 4 5
This trip combines hiking with an immersion into the uniqueness of this fascinating area - there is no better way to understand these two parks than by staying in the midst of them and exploring by foot. Hikes are moderate in terms of length and elevation gain, and it is an excellent trip for beginner to experienced hikers who like to immerse themselves in their trips.
We'll spend the first three nights in small cabins at Pickett CCC Memorial State Park about two hours outside of Knoxville, TN. Cabins are lovely wood frame structures and accommodate 2 - 3 persons per cabin. Some cabins have separate bedrooms and/or bedroom in the living area. All are shared bathrooms.
The next two nights will be spent at Charit Creek Lodge inside the South Fork National River and Recreation Area, located in both Tennessee and Kentucky. You will be hiking to the Lodge (about 1.1 miles) with your overnight gear for 2 nights. Accommodations at Charit are in a rustic bunkhouse with bunk beds. We rent enough bunk rooms so that no upper bunks will be in use. There is no electricity and shower and toilet facilities are in a separate building. Meals are provided by Charit in the communal dining room.
Our last night will be spent at a wonderful B & B, The Garden Inn, for a bit of pampering before going home.
Below is the proposed itinerary for the trip. As is true on any adventure travel trip, plans for any specific day may be modified due to weather considerations, unforeseen circumstances, new opportunities, and group interests.
Trails were good. The geology of the region was explained well and was fascinating to see. The guides were excellent, as usual. The group of women were very congenial and fun to get to know.
Great weather, beautiful hikes, friendly people.
Loved being out in the forest hiking each morning. The scenery: rock formations, waterfalls, wild flowers were beautiful.
Excellent weather in a fabulous venue
the location and type of trip where you could really get off the grid and into nature
This trip really gave me a lot of confidence about hiking. I was nervous whether the terrain would be too challenging and whether my endurance would be adequate but with the help of the great guides, i realized I can do a lot more than I thought! Also, I really like exploring this part of the country.
New friends, lovely landscapes in a part of the country I did not know existed. The only reason I didn’t rate it a 5/5 is that I wanted a little more physical challenge but that is probably more my problem than any real issues with the trip.
The hiking, the camaraderie, the accommodations, especially charit creek lodge, the guides
Each hike was new & gorgeous. The pace of each day was well laid out for my expectations. There were offerings for those who wanted to add in some additional hikes, but there was also some "down" time built in to the schedule. Jody & Tali were brilliant guides and worked well together. Communication was excellent. Food was excellent. Transportation was well thought-thru and coordinated. It was obvious that each trail had been vetted and measured to be a perfect "3" for me... like Goldilocks ... not too much, not too little :)
Great hiking and a very fun group of women.
Great guides and overall plan of trip
Being able to travel with my mom. Having time fully "off the grid" and experiencing new things. This is a great trip!
New things I saw and experienced, wonderful friendships formed, & escape from modern day necessities.
Enjoyed being "off the grid" for a few days. Nice to be able to disconnect.
I really didn't have any expectations, so everything was a nice surprise. I just wanted to get outside and hike. One thing I did realize, is that being used to longer, harder hikes, I missed the opportunity to hike for an hour or two+ at a steady pace, losing myself in the trail. I will need to adjust my expectations when I do another level 3 to adjust my mindset.
yes. I expected good food, knowledgable guides and clean comfortable lodgings.
The hiking trails were scenic, beautiful paths to walk. My kind of favorite hiking. The bunkhouse life was dismal. However I liked the way it brought the group together during porch time!