Benton MacKaye Trail


The Benton MacKaye Trail (BMT) is a footpath of nearly 300 miles in length winding through the Appalachian Mountains.  Sharing the southern most terminus of the Appalachian Trail, Springer Mountain in Georgia, the BMT heads northbound traversing  3 states and passes through 8 wilderness areas.  Following the blaze of the white diamond, the trail crosses various rivers along its path…the Toccoa River in GA, the Ocoee, Hiwassee, Upper Bald and Tellico Rivers in Tennessee and the Little Tennessee River in North Carolina.  Hiking across the Fontana Dam and entering into the Great Smoky Mountain National Park, you will climb the highest peak on this trail of 5,843′ over the summit of Mt Sterling before making your way down to Davenport Gap where she finishes…


Benton MacKaye is widely known as the father and originator of the Appalachian Trail.  An idea he had presented in his 1921 article, An Appalachian Trail: A Project in Regional Planning, he was a strong advocate who helped pioneer the idea of land preservation for recreation and conservation purposes.


In some portions, the Appalachian Trail and the Benton MacKaye Trail coincide together…The BMT is known for its wilderness experiences, a trail named after the planner, forester, teacher, conservationist and dreamer…Benton MacKaye