EWW Smokies Noland Divide to Deep Creek Loop

Eric, Whit, and Wes on another EWW adventure, this time to the Great Smokey Mountains!

Wes Arnold

5/22/20232 min read

Where: Smokey Mountains in North Carolina. We started at the Deep Creek campground. Went up the Noland Divide trail, connected on the

When: April 28th - 30th, 2023

Distance: 19.34 miles

Conditions: Beautiful sunny sky, a little rain on night 2, but after we were at camp. Overall great weather!

LighterPack: I didn't do a gear list for this one! I did take my Dream Hammock though. Probably carried too much water!

Useful Pre-Trip Info: You have to buy a parking pass and register with the rangers for your campsites. The parking can be nightly, weekly, or longer than that. We did the week pass for like $15. It's also $8/night/person to register. Also, you have to hang your food so make sure you have a bag and cordage and what not to do that. As long as you stay at the camp site they have cables available for you.

Trip Report: We crashed at my place Thursday night and then set out for the 5.5 hour drive to Deep Creek Campground in North Carolina Friday morning. One thing that still stands out about this trip: as soon as we arrived we saw rescue personnel everywhere! There was a hiker missing! I think there's a pic of the sign, but needless to say there were folks EVERYWHERE out there. We started up the Noland Divide trail which was absolutely brutal for the first 5.2 miles. We had hopes to make it to the campsites, but just didn't plan for how much uphill this is! So, we ended up using our leave no trace principles on a stealth site for the first night, and then stayed at our designated site for our second night. We were straight up exhausted Saturday night! Nonetheless, we persevered and had an awesome time. We had planned to give overviews of our setups, but decided to reserve that for the next trip! We're planning a YakPacking trip for June, so maybe you'll get to see our setups there.

Gear Notes: I had no gear notes for this trip, but Eric's beloved hammock bit the dust! You don't see this in the video, but as soon as he got into it on night 2, his elbow tore a huge rip down the side. He was able to hang in it, albeit uncomfortably, but no ground dwelling occurred, so all was well!

AllTrails Link

Affiliate Links to Products Used:

https://amzn.to/3IJtOgq - GSI Pinnacle Dualist kit (I only used the pot for this trip)

https://amzn.to/438KBlq - Toaks spork

https://amzn.to/3MEJset - SnowPeak LiteMax Titanium Stove

https://amzn.to/3OGd9y4 - Toaks 450mL Cup

https://amzn.to/43nn3J8 - Katadyn BeFree Gravity Water filter system

https://amzn.to/3BXoqCF - Adventure Medical Kit 0.5 Ultralight/Watertight First Aid Kit

https://amzn.to/3MF7Jke - NiteCore NU25 Headlamp

https://amzn.to/43uEg3E - Anker iPhone Lightening Cable

https://amzn.to/3Wxgemh - ORIA Digital Refrigerator Thermometer (hangs on outside of backpack to tell us the temps)