Boogerman Loop is a great historical trail accessed via Caldwell Fork Trail in Cataloochee Valley. Experience more than a dozen creek crossings in one of the best old-growth forests in the Smokies.
Smokemont Loop Trail is a beautiful hike with flowers, trees, and views. The summit provides great views of the surrounding mountains. Crossing the river requires a little dexterity and a smidgen of courage as the bridge is a single log, about 40 feet long and 2 feet wide. I read somewhere that it is the longest footbridge in the park.
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.
Old Settlers Trail has more historical remnants than any other trail in the park. Early settlers flourished in this area. Many communities were built, then abandoned when park founders took the land for the park through eminent domain. Although this hike is included on our list of 38 Popular Day Hikes, you may want to finish it over two days.
The hike to Kephart Shelter is 2.0 miles in each direction. Kephart Prong Trail parallels the Kephart Prong of the Oconaluftee River and is a nice place to enjoy the sites and sounds of the river. In addition, quite a few historical remnants remain from early 20th century buildings.
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.
As you approach Juney Whank Falls, a footbridge allows you to experience the 90’ tall waterfall up close. A bench built into the footbridge is a nice place to sit and cool off while taking in the waterfall.
The wildflowers on Rainbow Falls Trail are amazing in the spring. The 80’ tall waterfall is spectacular after a long, steady rain. Rainbow Falls derives its name from the rainbow sometimes visible in the mist on sunny days. Rainbow Falls is also the highest single-drop waterfall in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
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.