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Silers Bald and Forney Creek Professional Review and Guide
"It would be hard to pick a better two-night backpack than this one. You get to sleep in a backcountry shelter (everyone needs to experience it at least once) and at a backcountry campsite. You have good high-elevation views, and you pass through scenic forests. Finally, you experience a Smokies trademark: powerful cascading creeks that you have to figure out how to cross. That said, this hike isn’t for everyone. It’s very strenuous and the high-elevation forest destruction at the start is depressing."
--Kevin Adams, Hiking Great Smoky Mountains National Park (Falcon Guides).
This is a fairly well maintained trail with a few great views on the Appalachian Trail. However the decent down the mountain on Welch's Ridge is not maintained as well and has many overgrown bushes across the path that you will need to walk through. Also there is no water in between Double Spring Gap and near the end of Jonas Creek. On a hot day this could be a problem since it takes around 4 hours to get to the actual creek. Forney Creek trail is gorgeous with several difficult creek crossings and a few easy ones. Forney Creek is uphill 98% of the time so be prepared for a big second or even third day. Me and my buddy did this hike, plus the Newfound Gap to Clingman's dome hike ( another 8 miles) in two days. It was extremely difficult and I would recommend two nights to really enjoy the trail.
This is a great scenic hike with views of a waterfall, the creek, lots of bear scat, and vistas from the ridge. We did this trip as an overnight backpack after a few nights of rain in November - making for very very cold stream crossings with water levels nearly to my waist, with several of us getting extremely wet. Despite this, I think all had a great time. Definitely made for two strenuous days with lots of challenging stream crossings the first day and a lot of elevation gain the second.
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