Points of Interest along this section:
This covers the section shared with the Mountains-To-Sea Trail from the intersection with the Deep Creek Trail
to Newton Bald. The MTS Trail goes from Clingmans Dome
to the North Carolina Outer Banks, a distance of about 1000 miles. Campsite #57 Bryson Place is the location of Horace Kephart's cabin. Kephart was instrumental in the establishment of the park and made famous the phrase, "the back of beyond". A bronze plaque near the trail commemorates his contribution. George Masa, a close friend of Kephart and an explorer and Ashville photographer, accompanied Kephart on many of his journeys. Masa catalogued the peaks of the Smokies and researched the names given to them by the Cherokee. He also scouted out the route for the AT throughout all of North Carolina. Masa Knob stands adjacent to Mount Kephart in the Smokies.
The BMT heads downstream from the junction of the Pole Road Creek Trail
at mile 242.0 along the side of Deep Creek for only 0.6 miles before heading up the Martins Gap Trail
at mile 242.6. At mile 242.1, just a short distance downstream along Deep Creek is Burnt Spruce Campsite #56. Bryson Place Campsite #57 (reservations required) is at the Deep Creek Trail
/ Martin's Gap Trail intersection at mile 242.6. The Martins Gap Trail
climbs steeply up Sunkota Ridge to Martins Gap at mile 244.1. Here the trail intersects the Sunkota Ridge Trail
which follows the ridgeline. Turn left uphill on the Sunkota Ridge and continue to climb steeply toward Newton Bald. At mile 249.0 the Sunkota Ridge Trail
intersects the Thomas Divide Trail
. Turn right on the Thomas Divide Trail
to the Newton Bald Trail
Junction at mile 249.3. A short distance up the Newton Bald Trail
is the Newton Bald Campsite #52 at mile 249.9 (5000').
There are three campsites along Deep Creek very close to each other, the Pole Road Campsite #55 (reservations required) at mile 242.0, Burnt Spruce Campsite #56 at mile 242.1, and Bryson Place Campsite #57 (reservations required) at mile 242.6. The next campsite is up on top of Newton Bald at mile 249.9
Water is available along Deep Creek, then is scarce until you reach the Newton Bald Campsite at mile 249.9. There is a spring about 150 feet down the east side from the campsite. So stock up on water before leaving Deep Creek. All water should be treated. The stretch of the BMT between campsite #57 on Deep Creek and campsite #52 on Newton Bald is essentially dry for about 7 miles. You might luck out and find an occasional seep in wet weather, but don't count on it.