Heads Up- New Changes- Sat., Sept. 21


If you've been watching the weather forecast then you know we're likely to have plenty of rain and possibly thunderstorms tomorrow, especially during the afternoon. We've decided to lower our expectations of what we can accomplish, yet still get a hike in tomorrow.
We'll still meet in on the Burnsville Square at 8:30 or at the Weller's at 8:45 and carpool up Winter Star Rd. to John and Sandy Whitehouse's cabin or the Five Maples. At the very least, we'll hike to the Isom Mine, learn about its history and enjoy the view from the tailings dump. We'll check the weather there and decide whether to hike on up to the high grade and complete the loop back to the Five Maples (7.5 miles), or whether to head directly back to the Five Maples by the shortest route (5 miles total). None of us will attempt to hike up to the Crest Trail.
We'll still end our hike with refreshments at John and Sandy's house, arriving there probably between 1 and 2 pm.
Don't forget your rain gear just in case we get caught in a shower.
Here was the original plan--Take a glimpse deep inside a mountain, learn a bit of fascinating local history and join the gang for refreshments and fellowship when High Peaks Trail Association leads a hike Sept. 21 to the historic Isom Mica Mine high on the slopes of Celo Knob.
Hikers will also have the option of climbing to the Knob’s summit and hiking along the Black Mountain Crest Trail, one of the most spectacular footpaths in the Eastern U.S. The day will end with a “happy hour” at the Winter Star cabin of club members John and Sandy Whitehouse.
Adventure-seekers will gather for this strenuous outing on the Burnsville Town Square at 8:30 a.m., car-pooling to the Cattail Community parking area, which is across from the home of Worth and Susan Weller. If you drive on your own, please meet there at 8:45 a.m.
The hike will begin on Winter Star Road, ascending to the Isom Mica Mine, where miners toiled for decades to unearth one of the area’s signature minerals. From the mine, the group will climb to the “high grade,” the historic railroad bed constructed by logging companies 100 years ago to harvest the area’s forests.
From there hikers can either continue along the (mostly level) high grade, eventually descending to the starting spot on Winter Star Road, or join a more adventurous group and climb another 500 feet to the Black Mountain Crest Trail for a much longer hike.
This group will have the option of bushwhacking to the summit of 6,327-foot Celo Knob. After that, they will hike along the scenic Crest Trail, climbing 6,203-foot Winter Star Mountain, before descending to Deep Gap and returning to the starting point on Winter Star Road.
The hike to the mine and the high grade will be about 7.5 miles, with a climb and descent of about 1,300 feet. The hike along the Crest Trail will be about 12 miles, with a climb and descent of about 2,000 feet.
For more information, contact hike leader Dennis Smith at 675-9459 or email him at dennissmith4141@gmail.com.