Eagles Point Buttress/Indian Staircase/Star Gap Arch
Location: Red River Gorge Geological Area (Daniel Boon National Forest) - Slade, KY
General Rules and Regulations: Overnight permits are required (available at gas stations in Slade). No camping with 300' of a marked trail or road. No camping or fires within 100' of rock structures. Fires are permitted unless there s a fire ban in place - No cutting standing timber (dead or alive). Bear precautions are required.
Please see the USDA website, which is over Red River Gorge, for details on the rules.
Trip Highlights: 3 days/2 nights; temp ranged from mid 30s to low 60s
Menu: Oatmeal, Pasta & Meat Sauce, Mexican Chicken & Rice, Snacks
Shelter: Warbonnet Black Bird hammock, DIY JC Penney Under Quilt, Kelty Comsmic Down 20 Bag, Warbonnet Mamajamba Tarp
Day 2: After some coffee and some oatmeal we pushed on toward the Osborne Bend trail. After navigating a few dead-fall sections we reached the intersection of Osborne Bend where we stopped for a light snack before heading toward the truck. We stopped at a rock bluff not far from the truck for another snack and some water before loading up to head to Indian Staircase.
Since the trails we were traveling were all unmarked and had never previously taken them we decided not to enjoy too much time gawking over the God's handy work. We pressed on in search of the Indian Staircase Bypass trail to work our way back toward the Sheltowee. We worked our way around the ridge until we reached the end where we had to do some minor scrambles (the scrambles all become relative to what you have previously encountered...Indian Staircase for example) to come down off the ridge. After making our way back down to Sheltowee we realized why we didn't see the trail intersection of Sheltowee & Indian Staircase Bypass...It was mostly non existent, marked only by 3 scores on a tree. Not even the path was noticeable. We backtracked to the truck where we again moved on to new area.
Back on the road we headed to Tunnel Ridge Road where basically car camped at one of the parking areas. We set up camp and again stoked up a fire. We enjoyed the fire and another clear night full of stars before heading to the hammocks.
We worked our way down to the arch where we enjoyed some snacks and water before doing some minor exploration around the arch. Again, leaving most of it for a return adventure. After several more pictures we once again headed back to the truck for another drive...This time back north to home.