View Full Version : Neels Gap to Cowrock

10-23-2006, 11:38
Wanted to post my campsite findings on a weekend overniter in this section. There are 4 gaps and 4 'peaks' listed beginning at Bulls Gap, a mile north of Neels Gap, and all have a campsite, making for 8 campsites on this 4-mile stretch. All the gap sites are large, especially the first (NOBO) Bulls Gap and the last, Baggs Creek Gap which has a nice spring. I stayed at Swaim Gap which is the only gap site with a view.

I preferred the view from Wolf Laurel, close second was Cowrock. Wolf Laurel was good size, big enough for a troop of boy scouts. Cowrock had at least 3 campers there overnite. Rock Spring Top was small and the view was minimal - it also has a tiny spring where its very difficult to get water, so the only real place to fill up was Baggs Creek Gap. There is a small site at Levelland, big enough for a 2-person tent, but that's it.

Was a very popular section this week, but frankly not as much as I had thought it might be. All sites were occupied, except maybe Levelland, but the big sites still had plenty of room.

Almost There
10-23-2006, 11:52
Almost got struck by lightening on Cowrock last year!!!

10-23-2006, 12:16
Thanks for posting Scope!

(Almost There-you'd be surprised at the seasoned hikers/Trail legends that are ABSOLUTELY terrified of lightening! Glad you're okay.)

10-23-2006, 12:51
Talk about coincidental: I just finished updating (finally!) my journal entry for Neels Gap to Blue Mountain from April 7, 2004 where I noted that there were a profusion of good campsites in the 5 miles north of Neels Gap!

10-23-2006, 15:32
Almost got struck by lightening on Cowrock last year!!!

We had a front blow in overnite, but just rain and lots of wind. The boy scouts on Wolf Laurel had a tough time - that's about as high and exposed as Cowrock. Love the views there, but wouldn't do it in the late spring or summer due to late thunderstorms that pop up. Great dayhike where you can take cover in the gaps if nec. in the summer. Takes a little while to get up and down Levelland, though, but the other tops aren't bad.

p.s. AT Club must feel this part of the trail is too busy to need maintenance, but I could hardly find a white blaze and the blue blaze to water was unrecognizable as a blaze - thought it was some blue/green fungi growing as an oblong oval spot on a tree until I saw the same thing on the other side of the tree!

10-23-2006, 15:35
I was on cow rock this weekend. we did 16 miles from unicoi on the first day and hiked into neels on the second. I think Tesnatee to Neels is one of my favorite sections. The camping on cowrock is great. Good trees for hammocks and good sites for tents. Other than the couple hours of rain and the sore legs it was a perfect weekend.

10-23-2006, 18:25
i was on the middle saddle rock on cowrock mountain once when a tornado passed within a few miles of there in the night. very interesting. otherwise, i've really enjoyed being up there.

10-23-2006, 18:43
I find it interesting how many of those campsites disappear during summer among the wildflowers.