Re: NANFA-- Sipsey camping suggestion

Bruce Stallsmith (
Tue, 24 Jul 2001 00:20:27 -0400

>Hey, sounds interesting!
>Can someone give highway directions to a Louisiana member? Interstates,
>highways, local road numbers, etc.?
OK, here's a more schematic description. The Bankhead National Forest (which
includes Sipsey Wilderness) is most easily accessed from I-65, north of
Birmingham, AL. At exit 310 is Highway 278, in Cullman, on which you would
head west for the town of Double Springs. Double Springs is in Winston
County, about 22 miles west of I-65 (this is _not_ a big town!). Highway 33
runs north from Double Springs off of 278. 33 crosses the Sipsey River about
5.5 miles north of Double Springs. Just north of the river, on your right as
you head north, is the Mims Family pullover which is the river access. This
is our meeting area, with the recommendation that most people park in the
parking lot there just off of the highway and walk down to the river. (So
that Casper can find it<!>, this is on page 23 of the Alabama Gazetteer,
grid C10.)

My proposed camping area is further north up route 33 from the Sipsey River.
In grid B10, page 23, of the Gazetteer, roughly 8 miles north of the Sipsey
crossing, there is a paved county road, Lawrence County Road 6, that goes
off to the left (west) and defines the southern edge of the Sipsey
Wilderness. Going down this road about 3/4 mile you find a gravel road on
your right, FS 224. This is marked by a wooden post that as I remember
simply says "FS 224". This runs for about 3 miles and dead-ends at a _small_
circular parking lot at Borden Creek. The Forest Service asks for $3/car/day
as a user fee to be paid in a metal collection box, and there are tent sites
along the creek there. That be the X on the map. And there are no amenities,
bring your own water, trowel, etc. The creek contains largeish stonerollers
(hooray!), _Percina_ species darters, a bunch of _Etheostoma_ species
darters, and the usual cast of shiners/chubs (at least).

--Bruce Stallsmith
Huntsville, AL, US of A

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