Hiking in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee

Hiking through the Great Smoky Mountains is one of the best ways to enjoy the scenery. Hikers can see and hear Rainbow Falls, Grotto Falls, or any of the other amazing waterfalls in the Great Smoky Mountains. Also, they can get a close-up look at the lady slippers, crested dwarf iris, and trillium along with the dozens of other wildflowers that flourish in the mountains. Many people take to the trails hoping to see a black bear, wild turkey, or white-tailed deer on the path. They may want nothing more than to see a great horned owl or an American kestrel fly overhead. Visitors to the Great Smoky Mountains have the opportunity to choose the trail they want to follow. Discover how different trails in the Great Smoky Mountains provide visitors with varied experiences.

 

Choosing a Trail

Some visitors to the Smokies want to challenge themselves with a strenuous hike, while others just want to take a short jaunt through the woods. Before heading outside, visitors can read trail descriptions to decide which one they want to try. Some trails are designated as strenuous while others are moderate. Some of the trails, like the Kephart Prong Trail, are designated as kid-friendly, so parents can introduce their young children to hiking without exhausting them for the day. There are some trails, such as the Oconaluftee River Trail, Deep Creek Trail, and Gregory Ridge Trail, where visitors can observe some of the most beautiful wildflowers in the Smokies. Some trails lead to open fields that are frequented by certain kinds of birds, including northern bobwhites, killdeer, and red-tailed hawks. Bird enthusiasts often look for these types of trails. Some people visit the Great Smoky Mountains for the sole purpose of seeing one particular waterfall. There are trails that take visitors directly to waterfalls. Visitors also can choose trails that lead to natural formations like the Chimney Tops or Charlies Bunion. Taking some time to read the details about the various trails can help visitors to accomplish all of the goals of their trip to the Great Smoky Mountains.

Popular Trails in the Great Smoky Mountains

  • Abrams Falls
  • Andrews Bald
  • Alum Cave
  • Bullhead Trail
  • Charlies Bunion
  • Chimney Tops
  • Grotto Falls
  • Kephart Prong Trail
  • Porters Creek Trail
  • Rainbow Falls
  • Spruce-Fir Trail