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A link to NC State parks.
lists all the parks with maps and contact information
The river is shallow and moves quickly.
Be aware of water levels so there is enough water to paddle.
Good trip for beginners with nice state parks to camp in a good views while canoeing.
Zaloo's is a well established outfitter and can help you organize your trip.
Lake James State Park (Morganton, NC)
Lake James hold the distinction of being one of the clearest, cleanest lakes in the Carolinas. This is one of the newer camping spots and as such, has contemporary facilities. However, there is no Rv camping here, but it is great for tent campers. The views are absolutely breathtaking. The high mountains of the Pisgah National Forest can be seen across the water. This campground has 2 campsites that are disabled accessible. There is so much to do here - swimming, fishing, canoeing and hiking. What more could you ask for!
Big Creek Campground (Cove Creek, NC)
The Great Smoky Mountain National Park is a great place but can be a bit overcrowded unless you know where to go. Big Creek Campground is just such a place. It is the smallest campground in the Park with only 12 campsites and is tent only, which explains why it is often not overcrowded. It is also a walk-in campground from the parking lot, so you are transported to a simpler life when you camp here. The campground is at the head of the Big Creek Trail that traces the old logging era railroad grade. If you want to cool off, you can do so in one of the swimming hole in Big Creek that pool between the white rapids. With Big Creek Campground as your base, you can enjoy all the wonders of the Great Smoky Mountains.
Balsam Mountain Campground (Cherokee, NC)
Experience something rare - red spruce and Fraser fir forest in the highest reaches of the great Smoky Mountains. Balsam Mountain Campground offers the highest tent camping in the Smokies in the type of forest usually found in Canada. Originally established in 1934, Balsam Mountain Campground was set up for tent camping, as there really wasn't much in the way of RV camping at the time. Today, it is still for tent camping in the best tradition. Because the campsites are too small for RVs, it is never over crowded. This makes it ideal for a wonderful mountain get-away. Get away from the rat race and spend some quiet solitude in Balsam Mountain Campground, exploring the great Smoky Mountains to your heart's delight.
Has a nice group site on the island with picnic shelters and trees to camp in.
Great weekend trip
on the Blue Ridge parkway is a good spot with sweet water once you purify it.
The camping is good and your older scouts can hike in from the parkway and your novice scouts can hike in off the dirt road from the bottom.
comes recomended by Duane Carter former Scoutmatser for T486
For more information on this hike
National Forest: George Washington & Jefferson National Forests
Local Office: George Washington & Jefferson National Forests
PO Box 10
Natural Bridge Station, VA, 24579
Lodge 70 Order of the Arrow
2014 Philmont unit registration packet
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▶ Week Four: Southern Region ~ Nov 19 - 25