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“Has anyone been backpacking in Sipsey lately? Just wondering what kind of shape it is in after the 2 huge storms it got hit with earlier this yr.”
“As many blow downs as there were before the storm, I can't imagine it got much worse.”
“hopefully some of the folks who use to go there all the time will chime in.
where is Bama when you need him. He knew Sipsey like the back of his hand”
“I would use the verb "knows"”
“You'll be fine..... Take a chainsaw”
“I would use the verb "knows"”
yeah knows would be better
bump..anyone been there lately”
“No planned fall hike? It would be all too convienient for me from Huntsville. We could subtitle it the "Farewell to Sarabelle Hike" or something - seeing's how her hiking days are quite numbered...”
“I was thinking i'd be nice to do sipsey again and sees everybody but I guess this is fallen' apart too.
Chris, you still out there?”
“Set up a trip. I'm in.”
“I found this on another site. Looks like Sipsey is still a mess
21 Oct Update
19 Oct Update - thank you to everyone who has contributed information, please keep it coming.
200: Cleared, a few minor step-overs (as of 21 Oct report from jnunniv)
- West Borden trail is also clear
201: Cleared by Wild South
202: Generally clear as of 18 Oct (A.Quigley); clear from 201 to hemlocks near Sipsey; passable from hemlocks to Sipsey River & 209
203: Cleared except a few step overs
204: IMPASSABLE and CLOSED
206: Day Hike Only? Seems like it's IMPASSABLE near Ship Rock & Eye of Needle area
- 206 near Whiteoak Hollow (just south of Thompson TH) is BAD, no reroute per w.m.sam on 18 Oct
- 206 north of Eye of Needle is BAD, but game trail bypass possible per w.m.sam on 18 Oct
- 206 south of the Needle is open (short section from Sipsey River to 201) as of 18 Oct
207: IMPASSABLE after about 2 miles North of Borden Creek TH (as of Oct 3)
209: officially CLOSED
- Between 206 and 204: Clear per weathermansam (as of 18 Oct)
- Near 204: Impassable as of Oct 6
- Condition from Sipsey River rec area towards 200?
- Condition from Borden Creek (200) to 202?
Hubbard Creek between Ship Rock and Quillan: blowdowns, "tiring to walk" but possible (as of Sept 2011 w.m.sam)
Quillan Creek: minor blowdowns but passable, east side of creek is worse (as of Sept 2011 w.m.sam)
Ok, per the wilderness ranger training meeting Oct 22 with the FS and Wild South, these trails are still closed in the Sipsey Wilderness Area:
Thompson , Buck Rough , Sipsey River Trail from 204 down to Borden Creek . and 207. The ONLY trailhead still currently closed is the Gum Pond Trailhead.
Note: 209 is OPEN from the junction with 204 up to where it meets the Rippey Trail .”
“Ok, I changed my mind. If the 206 north of the needle is bad, then the rest of it must be damn near impassable.
And to think of all the work done to clear that out 10 years ago. Someone tell HOI to pack the saw and set up another trail clearing trip this winter.”
“Chili, there is a company that is suppose to come in and clear the trails sometime in Jan. I tried to find the post about it but no luck”
“Looks like we need to plan a trip for February.”
“we don't need no stinkin trail!!!”
“How about a good old fashioned bush wack ay chili???”
“Even as much as I like "bush whacking", I don't like to do it in the woods.
Oh, wait....I bet that isn't what you were talking about...never mind.”
“HOI gave his saw to Sgt Rock to clear the BMT.
I wish they would have let a few burns happen over the years. A nice prescribed burn would do that area wonders....if it didn't have decades of fuel piled up”
“I have a pruning saw. No, not one of those folding types - it's a handsaw with the lance tooth design - like a two man crosscut. I also have a Pulaski (forester's ax). I was introduced to both by The Friendly Ranger when I did maintenance hikes with her in Idaho. Let's get busy this winter.”
“Don't we often just get into a drainage just off of the road? ' seems like I recall a couple of times not really using a trail?”
“toph and I are batting about a trip on facebook. We've taken a trip the weekend after the SECCG for maybe 4 years in a row. My wife reminded me last night that each year I say never again in December because of how busy things are. I don't know if he'll still get the trip together or not. I figure we'll do one in January. I'm not sure we've ever done a trip ontrail out there together. Two years ago we bushwhacked the southern part of Caney creek. I think this year will be the northern part. Another option is to do the same trip we did last year when it was so dry. All the waterfalls were totally dry. The part we did was to put in off 33 a few miles south of Cranal and bushwhack to Cranal about where the sideroad to Brushy is located.”
“last weekend Hamhocker and I finally got to go to Sipsey. This was our first trip out since the Mammoth cave trip last Nov.
The trails ahd been cleared of blowdowns so it made for easy hiking except on one trail.
We parked at Randolph trailhead and took trail 202 down to the river and crossed it to 209. The river was about knee high which wasn't bad after the rain they had earlier that week. We hiked a little ways down 209 and found a nice campsite by the river.
The next morning we hiked down 209 to 204 and took that trail to get to Bee Branch Falls and the Big Tree. It took a while to get there but we finally made it. We stopped and had lunch at the Big Tree. Afterwards we took 204A back down to 209. This trail had been overlooked when they cleared the blowdowns. It was a mess. At one point there was 8 or 9 trees down (side by side) that you either had to climb over, under or thru.
Once on 209 we hiked up the trail a little ways and camped. The next day we crossed the river to get back to 201 so we could complete our loop hike.
It was beautiful weather during the day but cold/cool at night. After having some warm days and night temps for the past few weeks the evening temps seemed cold there.
It wasn't many miles but after not getting out we didn't care. we just took our time and enjoyed the trip.”
“Sounds like a nice trip Ewker. Wish I had time to get out more.”
“Thanks ewker,I need to get down there before the hot weather sets in.”
“Glad ya'll got to get out!”
“karo, I agree Sipsey is no place I would want to hike when hot. The trails are already starting to get overgrown. I think that is due to most trails being closed due to the blowdowns.
Sunni, so are we. More excited that the situation we were in is over with finally!!”
“I am glad you got that behind you.”
“My situation has definitely changed for the better. I returned to Spring Hill to get back home to work after my six month two week vacation in Toledo. It was a great job and everyone was real nice, but it is good to be back home. If I ever get caught up around the house I gotta get out hiking.”
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