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Day 12 - TurkeyFoot Campground to campsite near Arvel

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sheltowee wanderer
on trail
on trail

Joined: 25 Oct 2004
Posts: 30
Location: Lexington, KY

PostPosted: Sun Oct 16, 2005 8:46 pm    Post subject: Day 12 - TurkeyFoot Campground to campsite near Arvel Reply with quote

After a couple days of rest and dumping all of GPS and Camera data I came back to the trail but with a friend of mine that worked at the college. Jay Buckner, a Hazard Kentucky native, and his dog were ready for an adventure. We decided to start our hike by staying a night at Turkey Foot Campground and were surprised to find that the gravel road leading into the campground was closed due to some land slide activity. The half mile walk to the campground gave Jay some time to get a taste of what his pack weight was going to feel like and what it was like to Backpack with a dog. We brought some fine foods with us and celebrated our liberation from the fast paced world. Jay had brought his harmonica and with my Jaw harp playing we did little to create a pleasant harmony but were quick to improvise and invent a new “sound”. Jay ended to night with playing “Old Kentucky Home”. The next morning I took some good shots of the campground before leaving for the trail that followed Warfork creek. We had trouble tracking the trail because it kept disappearing and reappearing probably due the high water levels of the creek at times. We finally made our way out of the valley and above Warfork creek and took a water break. The dog, never having been in the woods was having a blast and was adjusting well to trail life. Jay was doing good as well. We called lunch break at a wide creek crossing, just east of where Big Buck Lick and War Fork join. Cold underground water was surging out of the side of the mountain adding many gallons of water per second. The water had to be at least 50 degrees and was refreshing on the hot summer day. We took the opportunity to take some excellent photographs and in the process found a cave. The cold air that was blowing out of it was condensing and turning into fog which gave a surreal effect along the creek. Jay and I found the source of the cave and sat just in the mouth of it. The air too had to be around 50 degrees and after a couple of minutes we found ourselves turning back to warmth of the day. We both agreed that it was nice to know where some natural air conditioning was if we needed it. Like I said before, Jay’s dog did not have a lot of experience in the outdoors and had never gone swimming, but today would prove to change that.

We continued along the trail for the next couple of miles, with War Fork to our left, crossing it again after a couple of miles. We took advantage of the clear running water and used Jay’s water filter to re-hydrate before ascending into an area that had no water. The day was ending a bit earlier than we had anticipated and light was becoming scarce. Although we had headlamps, we decided to call it an early day instead of pushing on in the darkness and risking injury. (Perhaps we had spent too much time at our lunch spot…!) Our “on the spot” camp spot was on the side of the trail amongst a patch of young trees that were just big enough to tie a hammock to. The Hennesey Hammock proved once again to be a valuable asset to our trip, being deployable at a moments notice at any location.
The last notable event for the day was the small snake that I found on my poncho liner while we were eating dinner. Its round pupils, as opposed to the cat like pupils of poisonous snakes, told me it was safe. At about midnight we both noticed gunfire in the distance and wondered what was going on. This would be the case for the next couple nights while we were in the area. No explanation.

The Photo Gallery - Day 12
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