On day two of our hiking, we elected to do “The Jump Off” and “ Charlie’s Bunion”. The Jump Off is a a 6 mile round trip hike, and Charlie’s Bunion is an 8 mile round trip when done individually. Since we did these together and they share some of the trail, it was just a little over 9 miles total for us this day. The Jump Off is considered a moderate hike and Charlie’s Bunion is considered a strenuous hike, so this made for a good long day!! We were not disappointed. Both were tough but provided amazing views at the peaks as both are just over 6000 ft.
The elevation gain is over 1200 ft for these trails, so it was fairly steep. It’s not a popular trail, so the hike as pretty empty. The Jump Off point is a small narrow area and drops straight down!! So we were glad it wasn’t crowded, just Jo and I and another couple. We got to the peak at mid morning so we got to see the morning fog lifting and moving across the peaks west to east. Once it cleared we were given a gorgeous view of the western end of the Smoky Mountain range.
From here , we headed back and broke off to Charlie’s Bunion. Now this was a strenuous hike. Very steep, but such a good workout and a beautiful route to the top.
By now the fog had dissipated and we were greeted to a spectacular view of the GSM range with a 300+ degree view all around! We sat up top on the rock “bunion’ and had lunch.. just sat there and enjoyed the company and the view for a little while before embarking on the hike back down.
Man, were we TIRED by the time we got back to the camp. But like most of our long hikes, we treat ourselves to an Ice Cream from a local vendor.
Tomorrow, is a ‘between hike’ day so we plan to go horseback riding at one of the GSM stables.