May 19, 2010 at 11:39 am #1259137
Anyone frequent the RRG in Kentucky? I live about 2 hours from it and have been going there for 15 years. I have yet to see most of it, as I am a "stop and smell the roses" kind of hiker, in other words I don't care about miles.
I hike slow and stop a lot too meditate upon the scenery and breath heavily because I'm out of shape. Anyhow, I'm going there Memorial day weekend. Anyone have a favorite camping spot suggestion?May 19, 2010 at 11:52 am #1611298
I live in Louisville and have spent a ton of time in the gorge. Hoping to get more kayak experience there now that I have regular access to some. I've got a dog now and most people I know bring theirs as well so we usually try to hike away from people. I think the name of the place we try to camp at is Ooh La la rock, but I can't find it on any of the online maps. It's on the print maps though, just off Rough Trail and kind of close to the KR campground. I haven't been out much this year yet so my memory is all fuzzy.
Ooh la la is nice because it's just off the trail but it's down in a little valley while the trail stays on the ridge, so the dogs can run around free without bothering anyone. We've had 11 people/5 dogs camp there and you could probably fit twice that.
Also, stopping at Miguels on the way out goes without saying. Miiiight have to head out there after work today. Where do you like to go?May 19, 2010 at 12:31 pm #1611315
I've BP'd there and enjoyed it. It's not as challenging as what you'll find SE from there but I have enjoyed a great spot there they call Hanson's Point(unmarked) which is off the trail and at the edge of one of the ridges about a mile off of Rough Trail. It's not marked at all and is about a mile along the ridge but it's great. Pay attention so you know how to get back, the trail is not obvious in some parts.
If you interested, PM me and I'll send you a blow by blow directions.
The rock formations are very cool.
There is a cool little campground down the road(on 11) that is a climber gathering area which has a killer pizza joint that's fun to hang out at.
I like to add some length to the hike and like hiking along creeks so I start outside that park on Sheltowee Trace & 11. There is a cheap little hotel there too. It's clean. Think it was $45 or $55.May 19, 2010 at 12:48 pm #1611326
I used to hike and camp all around the area where Rough Trail 221 intersects with the Nada Tunnel Road or 77. There is an unofficial trail just north of 77 with a giant rock house we used to camp under. Now there is a no camp in rock house rule, which I understand is to not destroy the habitat.
I generally stuck around the RT 221 area and Chimny Top in my earlier years. Mostly because my fellow hikers and I were of limited experience in the way of navigation and gear.
Now we tend to try to put as much distance between us and other people as possible. The rangers can be rather aggressive, and no fun to talk to after I've had a pint of vodka. Plus the easy to get to placed are rather nasty with fecies and garbage.
There are some really nice, less frequented places off of Pinch-em Tight 223/100. On 223/100 mid-way between the intersections of 227 and 226 there is an unofficial trail that goes deep in to a valey with a good stream. This is a great place to go. Lots of good trails and rock formations around. Of corse, I'm not sure if camping is permitted there. (In the black circle in the picture)
Last year we puttered around the loop comprised of Sheltowee Trace on the north (221/100), Buck Trail (226) on the east and Koomer Ridge Trail (220) on the west. It makes a kind of triangle loop. There are some good sites there as the area is about in the center of the reserve.
Any suggestions for a cool spot. Near water is best.May 19, 2010 at 7:04 pm #1611498
Me and my family and a bunch of friends will be there for memorial day too. I usually pack in a few miles, but this time we are car camping at the 77/715 camp ground since the family is coming. I know just about every nook and cranny of the gorge and would be happy to show or share some secret places if you want.May 19, 2010 at 7:07 pm #1611500
The Old Douglass trail that starts at the single lane bridge is a good one once you get back a few miles and away from the party campers. If you follow the river, at 2.24 miles there is a cool beach area and a nice deeper swimming area and some nice waterfalls about 1/4 mile farther up a small side stream.May 19, 2010 at 8:21 pm #1611528
YAMABUSHI !BPL Member
GO CLIMB, GO CLIMB, GO CLIMB!May 20, 2010 at 6:50 am #1611623
Miguels has some amazing pizza with an unreal number of available toppings. And the camp ground for climbers behind Miguels can be quite interesting during the busy season, just dont plan on getting a good night sleep.May 20, 2010 at 6:52 am #1611624
Please do share, any cool locations. Swimming holes are great!
Also, my kids are about old enough to car camp now (well 2 of them are). With any luck they will take to it and then I can start hiking them.May 20, 2010 at 7:15 am #1611637
The actual rule is no camping within 100 ft of the back of a rock shelter. There are a few that are well over 100 ft deep, thus allowing camping, technically. On chimney top rd coming from 715, there is a trail on the right at 1.9 miles but no where to park. Go to the next spot on the right at 2.0 miles and park. Walk back to the trailhead that is marked by a wood post. The trail is only 1/2 mile, but it gets so steep and hard to follow that most people don't even try. Follow the path down hill, climb down a 8 ft ledge, weave around a bunch of downed trees, carefully work your way down a severely eroded "leaf shoot?" (you will know when you see it), sometimes there is a rope to help out. When you get to the bottom, take the trail 20 yards to the right and whammo!-May 20, 2010 at 10:34 am #1611717
I've never been there. Baby steps:
The first pic is the general area 1-2 miled down Chimney Top Rd. The Grey and White road is Chimney Top and the Red and White is 715.
The next picture zooms in on the potential area of which you speak. There are many unmarked trails (blue lines). Is it one of these, whitch one? Or is my map off and I need to go further north past trail 221 on Chimney Rock rd?May 21, 2010 at 3:27 am #1612084
Its hard to tell by that map. If you reset your tripometer when you turn on Chimney Top rd, its exactly 1.9 miles on the right. You cant miss the trail head. The first 1/4 or so mile is obviously popular for car campers. Just keep going downhill and its easy to find. If you want to learn about alot of the unmarked/unofficial trails, and great ones at that, stop at one of the gift shops in Slade and get the guide book called Hinterlands by Jerrell Goodpasture, its by far the best i have used.Jun 1, 2010 at 6:54 am #1615630
We found that rock house. Great site, thanks for the tip! We didn't camp there though, not much level ground. It was definately worth hiking too and hanging out there for a bit. That overhang is HUGE, it does not look so big in your picture.Jun 1, 2010 at 9:17 am #1615681
Im glad you found the rock shelter, its one of the best in the Gorge. And besides the person who left all of the tealights everywhere, it doesnt seem like it gets a whole lot of traffic. I had a great trip to the gorge myself this past weekend. We camped along the river at the Red River Gorge campground, it was my 20 month old daughters first overnight trip, and she had a blast!Jun 1, 2010 at 11:19 am #1615716
You are a trooper camping with a 20 month old. My 2 oldest are 6 and 7. I'm going to grt them car camping this summer. I hope at least one or both of them likes it so I can ween them on to backpacking.
This weekend my buddy and I found the rock house. Went back up to the ridge and hiked in at the spot where there is a gate to stop cars. Found this cool prarie I saw once hiking back there. There is a really nice site there but it was taken. So we set up camp in the grass area near an overlook as it was very dark out.
Next day we hiked up a trailhead half way down gravel road 24, the one that goes to the Rock Bridge trailhead. This trail hiked out to an overlook which is usually a dead end at the gorge. We found this very old unused trail that scrambled off the point, very steep but fun.
We eventually connected back to the Swift Creek trail and camped somewhere near Turtleback Arch, where a curious toad sat by me all night (but that's a different story).Jun 2, 2010 at 7:08 pm #1616215
The trail with the gate where you parked is called Buckskinner Hill Trail. There is a fork at .68 miles and it goes about 1500 ft to the right to a nice campsite in an opening next to a small pond. Im guessing you continued on past the fork to the large clearing at the end. Its at 1.08 miles. There is a trail in the back right corner of that clearing that leads to a decent overlook. This trail is one of my favorite winter spots to camp. The Hinterlands guidebook i mentioned tells about every unmarked trail along chimney top rd.Mar 26, 2012 at 3:16 pm #1859612
Hey was wondering if anyone could give me a couple quick insights into the Gorge. I am used to camping and backpacking in high desert(Joshua tree mainly)in California, moved out here in 2009 for school(UK, GO CATS) and haven't got a chance to relay explore the gorge at all yet.
Im trying to plan a camping trip with some buddies that i hope to be dragging along in future backpacking trips. In effort to get my girlfriend into backpacking i have invited her and some of her friends also…
Im going down to the gorge sometime soon to check out before I bring a group of 10 or 15 out there, but was wondering if there is any places i should defiantly take a glace at. For the first trip i am looking for a site that is not that long of a trek, pretty private and provides enough space for a group of 15 for about two days. Plan on taking a smaller group on a day hike, so any suggestions would be awesome!Mar 26, 2012 at 3:46 pm #1859629
Ben CBPL Member
Sounds like Scott is your man. I used to live in Lexington and spent a lot of time there but its been a few years. Names fail me. Its a bit different than your SW backpacking. If you stand still too long, moss will grow on your feet. And its steamy in summer. You should consider the Big South Fork to your south as well. Its a great area for backpacking and paddling. And Go Cats!
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