Polecat Falls Trek

October 05, 2014  •  4 Comments

I went on yet another waterfall trek with Ronnie Phipps and the Bubblegum Gang. This time the green shirt gang (more on that later), consisted of Ronnie the Group Leader, Jack the Equipment Man, Kelli the Ginger and her faithful companion Ella, Lieutenant Dan, and myself (no, I can't give myself a nickname).  We all met at the local morning hangout in Dayton, TN.  Hardee's must be pretty darn good here, the place is packed.  After short introductions we departed and headed for the trailhead in Graysville, TN.  

You know you're in the south when directions to the trailhead include "turn right just past the chicken houses".  The start of this hike is relatively flat and easy for a mile or so before veering off to the right and climbing uphill for some time.  After crossing one creek we came upon Polecreek Falls.  Water flow was very low but that made it easier to walk up the creek bed instead of bushwhacking on the banks.  Besides, The creek bed has no poison ivy or hidden SNAKES.  After getting a few shots we proceeded upstream looking for more photographic opportunities. Ronnie scouted ahead to Skunk Tail Falls, but reported back there was no water running over the falls so we left and put our sights on the next waterfall.

The camaraderie was typical of my last trek and made the trip very enjoyable.  Even though myself and Kelli were somewhat new to the group they really didn't hold back much.  Well, maybe they did.  Kelli has a dog name Ella and I liked having a dog with us on the trails again.  Ella photobombed Kelli a few times, but seemed to have a great time and probably covered 5x the amount of ground we mortal humans did this day.

Polecat FallsPhoto by Ronnie Phipps

Flora falls was our last stop of the day and it too was so unimpressive that we decided to call it a day.  I asked if there was anything nearby to photograph and before you knew it we were on our way to Buzzard Point in the Laurel Snow Pocket Wilderness.  Ronnie lives nearby and has access to this area by means of his, well Gail's ATV.   We headed to Ronnie's house where we joined Gail "Danika" as she's better known for yet another unforgettable buggy ride.  It was a fairly long hazardous ride, but I'm sure it was better than taking the six mile hike from the nearest public access point.  There were several complaints from the backseat riders about no back rests, no seat cushions, airbags, seat belts, etc. I did feel bad that Ella was trying to claw her way up into Kelli's lap the whole trip.  

Buggy RideApple iPhone 5s: 4.12mm f/4.0: ISO 32: 1/20 @ f/2.2

The view from Buzzard Point was exceptional. Amazing viewpoint overlooking the Laurel Snow Pocket Wilderness.  Here is a picture of the group from a buzzards perspective.  Kelli mentioned the shadow from the drone looked like a cartoon person falling from the sky.  I would have to agree.We explored a bit and I had the chance to pull out my drone and get some still shots and video.  I want to go back when the Fall colors are arrive this year. 

Buzzard PointPhoto from Drone

Buzzard PointPhoto from Drone

Oh yea, everyone showed up at Hardee's wearing green shirts. I of course, was odd man out with a bright red shirt. My thought process was not to be confused with a large mammal some hunter or poacher would want for a trophy. However, I was prepared and had several other colored shirts in my jeep.  I changed into a green shirt during the drive to the trailhead and thus the name "Green Shirt Gang".  I know Ronnie will always be wearing his green " Tennessee Photography" shirt on these treks so I'll conform and follow suit. 

Photo by Ronnie Phipps

Even though not much water was seen today I had a blast and every day hiking with good folks and being out in nature is a day better than doing anything else.


Ha. You didn't tell me you had a blog about the falls you recommended. All the research I needed on these. Very thorough! Thanks for the info.
Donna Lasater(non-registered)
Great photos and a super great looking group of people to shoot with. So happy for you John.
eldon & bonny(non-registered)
Great, as always! Really enjoy the commentary. Sounds lke you all have
a terrific time!
Any group known as the Bubblegum Gang is OK with me.
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