About Our Trail Guides and How to Purchase






We have four trail guides available.  Three of these are in 8.5x11 spiral bound
booklets.  The three guides cover trails that are long enough for backpacking trips
of several days.  The fourth shorter guide is for the trails in the Appletree Group
Campground area.  These latter  trails are used to connect the Chunky Gal/Fires Creek Trail system to the NC Bartram Trail and the Appalachian Trail at either Cheoah Bald near Robbinsville,
NC or Wayah Bald near Franklin, NC.  Click
sample to look at text in guides. Here is a sample of
one of the
maps.  The maps have a grid of UTM coodinates which allows picking off coordinates of any point along the trail.   A brief description of the guides:

1. GA Bartram Trail Guide.  Covers the GA Bartram Trail (37 mi.), GA Chattooga River
Trail (11 mi.), GA Three Forks Trail (3 mi.) and SC Chattooga River Trail (20 mi.).
There trails are all connected.  By doing the SC Chattooga River Trail, part of
GA Bartram Trail and GA Chattooga River Trail one has a 40 mile backpacking trip
along the Wild and Scenic Chattooga River.  Reprinted 2020 with updates..

2. NC Bartram Trail Guide.  Covers the NC Bartram Trail (60 mi. plus 10 mile road walk
across Franklin, NC) from its southern end near Highlands, NC to its termination
on Cheoah Bald.  The southern trail head is at the termination point of the GA Bartram
Trail on Hale Ridge Road. Intersects the Appalachian Trail at Wayah and Cheoah Balds. Reprinted with updates 2021.

3. Chunky Gal/Fires Creek Rim Trail Guide.  Covers the Chunky Gal Trail (21 mi.) starting
near Deep Gal and Standing Indian Mtn. west of Franklin, NC to its termination
point on the Fires Creek Rim Trail on Tusquitee Bald (5200 ft.).  Also covers the Fires
Creek Rim Trail (26 mi.) and side trlails down into the Fires Creek Basin. 
The road structure of the main roads in the Basin are also shown to allow for day-hike
explorations.  Also, the Old Road Gap Trail which leads down from County Corners
to Junaluska Gap is included.  Old Road Gap Trail allows connection to the Appletree Trails and
to the NC Bartram Trail.  Maps for the Appletree Trails but no detailed discussion
is given of the Appletree Trails which are used to connect to the NC Bartram Trail
and the Appalachian Trail.  These trails are not as well maintained as the Bartram Trail and you need to be an experienced hiker/backpacker to attempt these trails.  
Reprinted with updates 2018.

4. Appletree Trail Guide. This contains the maps and detailed discussion for the trail in the Appletree Camp Area (26 mi.).  These trails are associated with the Group Campground and can be used to connect Fires Creek to the Bartram and Appalachian Trails.

The guides contain GPS generated TOPO maps with the mileage shown on the maps. 
The TOPO maps are constructed using Terrain Navigator Pro from
Highlights are tied to the mileage and have a resolution of a few tenths of a mile.  
You may purchase the guides in a few stores in GA, and NC.  Please check before you go because they sometimes run out.  

You may also order by USPS mail directly from John Ray by sending a check or money order for the amounts quoted below.   The prices quoted below include shipping and handling.  

The guides are also carried on amazon.com  (higher price) if you want to order by credit card.  You can also pay me with paypal if you have a paypal account, email me for information about how to order using paypal, 

Make payment to John Ray. 

John R Ray
1190 Old Seneca Rd
Central, SC 29630-9593



GA BARTRAM GUIDE                $13.00
NC BARTRAM GUIDE                $13.00
APPLETREE GUIDE                   $5.00

FOR ALL FOUR GUIDES           $40.00

All prices include shipping and handling.

Disclaimers: We have tried to make these guides as helpful and as accurate as possible, but there are inherent dangers and the possibility of getting lost, running out of water, encountering wild animals, and being injured or sick when entering into any area the trail passes through. We encourage all hikers to obtain the USGS maps of the area you are hiking and learn to use these with a compass to navigate in the forest. Driving on Forest Service roads may be more dangerous than on normal highways since they do not have the same safety standards. We are not responsible for accidents that occur on Forest Service roads mentioned in this guide. We are not responsible for injuries or accidents that occur while using this guide. The parking areas mentioned in the guide are not secure. This is a serious problem for backpackers for which we do not have a good solution. We are not responsible for losses due to vandalism or theft from parking areas mentioned in this guide, although we ourselves have not experienced any theft or vandalism. These trails have strenuous ascents and steep descents. Make sure you are in excellent physical condition before attempting to hike these trails. You cannot count on cell phone use from the trail, connections are spotty at best. Treat all water that you do not bring with you. Tell someone exactly where you are going or better travel with others.  In the Bartram guides we  mention where you can attempt to arrange shuttles. We have not checked out the drivers at these locations and have no knowledge of their insurance and driving records. Hikers who rides with any driver, volunteer or commercial, accepts responsibility for his or her own safety and agrees to not hold the authors responsible for their safety.

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