We had twelve hikers on the hike. We first went to Laurel Falls, just a short distance from the Stone Door ranger station. After seeing the falls we started on the Stone Door trail and spent a few minutes at the overlook before descending through the Stone Door. We hiked the Big Creek Gulf trail to Ranger Falls where we had our lunch. The falls were absolutely stunning and it’s amazing how the water drops 30 ft. and disappears into a wide sink. Crossing Ranger Creek to get the falls was a challenge on the slippery rocks, but everyone made it across fine. It was a beautiful hike along Ranger Creek and we passed a smaller (unnamed) waterfall after leaving Ranger Falls. After discussion about the boulder hopping during the descent getting to the falls, we decided to continue on the gulf trail and take the easier Laurel Trail back to the ranger station. The ascent out of the gorge was challenging and we had a half mile straight up to get to the junction at the Alum Gap campsite. What was supposed to a 7 mile hike turned out to be 9.3 miles. The weather was perfect so I think the hikers were okay with the extra mileage.
Hikers were: Cindy Cliché, Roy Duncan, Ann Ford, Michael Glennon (Highland Rim), Carolyn Johnston, Marrie Lasater, Sara Pollard, Marietta Poteet (Highland Rim), Janet Przireubel (Chattanooga), Jan Safavi, Pat Thomas, and Wayne Yancey.