May 15, 2016 – Chimney off Baxter Creek Trail

It turned cold, into the forties (F) last night and only got up to sixty today. Half of the campers left this morning, however, we still have six sites occupied. We stayed inside most of the day, then took a walk on the Baxter Creek Trail in the mid afternoon.

These fern fronds are in the tent campground.

b Two Fern Fronds
Two Fern Fronds

This one is looking up Big Creek next to the campground.

b Big Creek Along Campground
Big Creek Along Campground

The Baxter Creek trail head is at the bridge across Big Creek in the picnic area. I noticed that the leaves on the tree next to the bridge have those little red things on them again this year.

b Red Things on Leaves
Red Things on Leaves

The trail immediately turns to follow Big Creek and goes gradually up hill. This is when we first started out.

b Baxter Creek Trail 2
Baxter Creek Trail

There is a lot of rhododendron in the forest here and they are getting ready to make new leaves and buds.

b Rhododendron Pre Buds
Rhododendron Pre Buds

I know there are dozens of different wildflowers growing along this trail.  Today we only saw these white violets.  Maybe more will pop out if it warms up next week.

b Violet 2
Violet
b Violet
Violet

An impressive rock wall is a short distance up the trail.

b Approaching Rock Wall on Baxter Creek Trail
Approaching Rock Wall on Baxter Creek Trail

The trail is narrow and the downhill side is very steep.  It would be a long fall.

b Rock Wall
Rock Wall

We crossed two small creeks and the terrain leveled out.

b Baxter Creek Trail
Baxter Creek Trail

Baxter Creek Trail takes a sharp left, but we followed a side path.  This stack of rocks piled with junk, otherwise known as artifacts, marks the route.

b Artifacts
Artifacts

Our destination was this chimney across the creek from the campground.

b Chimney By Big Creek
Chimney By Big Creek

The couple from site three was also there.  Here is the back, outside of the chimney. Note my scale model, Andy next to it.

b Outside of Chimney
Outside of Chimney

There is no mortar.  Smaller rocks are wedged between the larger ones to hold them tightly in place. Here is a closeup of the decorative pink stone

b Pink Stone on Outside of Chimney
Pink Stone on Outside of Chimney

Andy pointed out this mushroom growing on a mossy log near the chimney.

b Mushrooms on Mossy Log
Mushrooms on Mossy Log

On the way back down, I asked Andy to pose next to the rock wall.

b Andy in Front of Rock Wall Baxter Creek Trail
Andy in Front of Rock Wall Baxter Creek Trail

The sun hit this tender new growth just right.

b Tender Young Leaves
Tender Young Leaves

I couldn’t resist one more violet picture.

b White Violet
White Violet

 

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11 thoughts on “May 15, 2016 – Chimney off Baxter Creek Trail

  1. Opher June 22, 2016 / 4:30 am

    Looks like an interesting trail. You really gave an impression of it.

    Like

    • Dinata Misovec June 22, 2016 / 4:31 pm

      Thank you. I met my goal then. I want to show what it is like.

      Like

  2. Frank Wilmer June 22, 2016 / 8:40 am

    the photo of “red things on leaves” is so neat, Dinata–looks like a painting! I would ask you to forward just that photo to me….I don’t know what I will do with it, but it is so neat! thanks….jane

    Sent from my iPad

    >

    Like

    • Dinata Misovec June 22, 2016 / 11:01 pm

      That is the most incredible thing about the Smoky Mountains National Park. Parts of it are a temperate rain forest. Some days I think the very air is green.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Dinata Misovec June 23, 2016 / 10:54 am

        Yes, Baxter Creek Trail is one of the toughest hikes in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, six miles up a steep mountain. But the beginning section we did is a sweet walk in the woods.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. milliethom July 17, 2016 / 6:03 am

    Fabulous views of Big Creek. I love the freshness and greenery of the place, not to mention that impressive rock face and amazing chimney. What is the chimney used for? Is it a barbecue site or similar?

    Like

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