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Swift Camp Creek to Wildcat Trail Loop

 4.4 (11)

5.3 Miles 8.6 Kilometers


92%

Runnable

624' 190 m

Ascent

-625' -190 m

Descent

4%

Avg Grade (3°)

19%

Max Grade (11°)

1,264' 385 m

High

876' 267 m

Low

Shared By April French

Conditions


Unknown

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A loop incorporating Swift Camp Creek Trail #219 and Wildcat Trail #228, connected by KY 715.

April French

Dogs Leashed

Features River/Creek · Wildlife

Backcountry camping requires a permit in the Clifty Wilderness area.

Overview

This loop traverses part of the 7 mile Swift Camp Creek Trail #219 to its connection with Wildcat Trail #228 at mile 3. Enjoy the rhododendron shaded forest as it descends to Sons Branch Creek. Watch for the points where the trail becomes very thin with the steep ridge drop-offs.

Need to Know

There is a creek crossing at 1.5 miles. The trail runs on the ledge, so be careful where you step!

Description

From the Rough Trail/ Swift Camp Creek Trailhead, cross KY 715 and enter the forest. The trail is easy for a bit, as it descends the ridge to Sons Branch Creek. The trail then turns sharply so you can head up to the other side of the creek.

You'll then go over a number of rollers, and you'll traverse the ridge line next to the creek. Watch where you step, as the trail gets thin in places. You'll traverse a series of rollers as you follow the Swift Camp Creek. You'll also get to see a nice boulder garden along the way.

At mile 3, Swift Camp Creek Trail #219 meets up with Wildcat Trail #228, where you can either continue on Swift Camp Creek Trail #219 or make the loop on Wildcat Trail #228 back up to KY 715.

Wildcat Trail #228 follows under some rock shelters as it climbs to the top of the ridgeline. The trail levels off about 0.3 miles from the junction with Swift Camp Creek Trail #219, as you've reached the top of the ridge. You can work your way all the way to the Wildcat Trail #228 trailhead and parking lot or, like us, use the Forest Service road to loop back up to KY 715 and take the pavement back to the start point.

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Trail Ratings

  4.4 from 11 votes

#1482

Overall
  4.4 from 11 votes
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Rankings

#16

in Kentucky

#1,482

Overall
77 Views Last Month
2,014 Since Mar 13, 2016
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Lots of trails for camping webbing around the trail and easy to get lost in a few sections. We spent approximately 0.5mi of being turned around. Trail was very muddy in sections, especially near the water. It rained lightly the night before. Many fallen trees. Our beginner group was only able to run 3/5 of the trail. Slippery conditions made falling risk too high. May 27, 2018

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