Boogerman Trail

Boogerman Trail is named for Robert “Boogerman” Palmer

As you hike this moderately challenging 7-mile loop trail, you can see the Palmer homesite.  It will take between 2 and 3 hours to complete the Boogerman Trail with a gain of nearly 850 feet on your way to 3,600 feet at the trail’s highest point.

boogerman trail

Caldwell Place along the Boogerman Trail

There are views of some of the largest trees in the area, old homesites (including Palmer’s), and mountain streams.  The Trail is well maintained.

This area was spared from the logging operations which dominated much of the Smokies area before the land was purchased for the Park.  At mile 3.8 of your loop on Boogerman Trail, the trail turns down to the right alongside Snake Branch, around a rock wall, and across a small stream. There are some clearings, old fence posts and piles of stone.  These indicate where homesites previously existed near the creek.

Nearing the five-mile point you will cross Snake Branch.

Among towering hemlocks  you will cross Caldwell Fork several times via log footbridges. The stream offers picturesque views of both quiet, deep pools, and noisy falls on Boogerman Trail. Several hundred yards before crossing Cataloochee Creek at approximately mile 7.4, and completion of the loop, sit the remains of a cabin and barn built by Carson Messer. Follow the directions from I-40, NC 276, and Cove Creek Road, then let the signs direct you to the Caldwell Fork Trail.  Cross Cataloochee Creek on a footbridge where you’ll enter an area of white pines. When the trail splits, stay right and climb a narrow edge along Caldwell Fork. Cross Caldwell Fork on a footbridge and enter an area of old-growth trees. At that point, you will enter a gap and traverse an area dominated by white pines.  The Palmer (Boogerman) homesite is at  mile 2.8.

hiking trails