The old gravel road on Maddron Bald Trail gives way to a narrow forest trail about 2.3-miles from the trailhead as you enter a magnificent old-growth forest. The old trees reach to the sky and provide an amazing experience unlike any other in the park. You have almost arrived at Albright Grove Loop.
Ramsey Cascades is the tallest waterfall in Great Smoky Mountains National Park at 105 feet. The beautiful waterfall drops down rock outcroppings and gathers in a small pool. There are several places to get great photos with the waterfall in the background.
Wildflowers are in abundance at the trailhead and along the first two miles of the trail. Some say that a spring hike on Porters Creek Trail is unequaled in the Smokies. The best time to see wildflowers is from April to May, although the trail is open year round.
Due to its close proximity to Bryson City and the Deep Creek Campground and picnic areas, this trail is popular with tubers and hikers alike. Beginning at Indian Creek Trail, equestrians also may use the trail.
Grotto Falls is located 1.3 miles from the Trillium Gap Trail trailhead. It is famous for being the only waterfall in Great Smoky Mountains National Park where you can walk behind the falls. You will appreciate the cool, misty spot if you are hiking in the summer heat. Enjoy it, and be safe.
Chimney Tops Trail is one of the most popular in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It is also one of the most strenuous. So what makes one of the most strenuous trails one of the most popular? That is easy; the end of the trail reveals one of the most amazing views in the entire park.
The 30 minutes allotted for walking the trail does not take into consideration the time needed for looking at the historic buildings. You could spend a couple of hours in total, depending how closely you examine the old structures. In the spring, wildflowers are in abundance throughout the property.
The wildflowers along Little River Trail in April and May are spectacular, some of the best in the park. If you happen to be hiking in the fall (October), the leaf colors are breathtaking. You will not find a more beautiful spot to see fall colors up close and personal in the Smoky Mountains.
The highlight of this trail is the water. Several beautiful waterfalls and cascades can be found all along the trail. While Abrams Falls Trail is by far the more popular trail, the waterfalls and water features of Middle Prong Trail are much better. If you want to see water, this is the trail you want to schedule.
The easiest way to get to the trailhead is to drive to Fontana Village Resort Marina and take the boat shuttle. You can top off your water supply and use the restroom before boarding for the short trip across Fontana Lake. I could live on a boat, so there is no other choice in my opinion.