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[at-l] Rainbow Springs Campground

I had responded privately as to why i did not care for Rainbow Springs and
decided to post it to the list.

First off, there are signs all over the place regarding usage of everything.
An overabundance of signs.

They will not shuttle you into town to a bigger supermarket or the post
office. They will not act as a mail drop for thru-hikers. When asked if they
could help arrange a shuttle, a hiker was told that everything they needed
could be bought at their store.

The hiker bunkhouse is filthy. Ok, i know, we're staying in shelters, under
the stars or in tents so why should we be picky? Well, with the wind whipping
through the chinks in the walls and staying on really filthy uncovered
mattresses, it wasn't pleasant. 

A hiker's fiance visited her and they stayed in a cabin. She used a dishcloth
to clean Rainbow Springs' pots that were there before she could use them.
After she had checked out, the people told all the hikers came after about
this filthy hiker, by name, who had cleaned her gear with their washcloth. If
you were a "good" hiker, you got to hear about the bad habits of the other

There is a men's bathroom and a woman's bathroom. They are cleaned between 9
p.m. and 10 p.m. When the man had finished one bathroom and was beginning to
do the other one, a hiker asked if she could use the woman's (clean) bathroom.
He said ok. The next morning while this hiker was shopping in the campground
store he commented to someone else in the store that "Some hikers evidently
don't read the posted notices we go to all the trouble of putting up." She
reminded him that she had asked him politely if she could use the facilities
since he was already done with them.

Those are just a few of the personal experiences that I have had or others
that i walked with had. I was happy to reach there. It was my first greater
than 12 mile day. It was VERY cold and had snowed that day going over Albert
Mt. Would i have stayed there knowing they were that nasty with those
conditions? Yes. If the weather had been nice i would not have stayed there
but at the shelter before and waited to go into Franklin the following day.

I'd recommend them for emergency use only.

However, i do agree with Gypsy that some folks will love some hostels and
others deplore them. Early on in your trip, you may be unsure what to expect
from each hostel. And, each one is different from the last with different
personalities and various different rates for staying there.

I heard folks complain about Uncle Johnny's Nolichucky Hostel in Erwin because
of all he charged for things per item. For me, he charged less by adding up
the bits and pieces than what i paid in one lump sum at the Blueberry Patch.
One hiker told me, however, that he had different rates for different people
for the shuttling he did into town. Perhaps not a good sign.

People provide their hostels as a measure of goodwill and/or as a business.
Just wanted to post my reasons for not caring for Rainbow Springs.  I enjoyed
all the rest of the hostels/motels i stayed in from Springer to Damascus.

They included the Helendorf Inn, the Blueberry Patch, Fontana Village Inn (the
one at the resort), the Rainbow Motel in Gatlinburg,  Mt. Moma's,  the Alpine
Motel (pricey--only stayed one night), Elmer's in Hot Springs, Uncle Johnny's
in Erwin, Kincorra in Dennis Cove and of course, The Place in Damascus. Each
one was VERY different from any of the others. LOL....guess i had more than my
share of town stops.

Second Chance
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