Chimney Tops Trail

HARD 255 reviews

Chimney Tops Trail is a 4 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Gatlinburg, TN that features a river and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible from March until November.

4.0 miles 1371 feet Out & Back



nature trips





wild flowers





no dogs

Chimney Tops trail starts behind the Visitor Center in Frozen Head National Park. The trail starts as an immediate 45 degree switchback and continues like that for about a mile to the first ridge. The terrain is not traveled frequently which adds both a sense of adventure and caution to the hike. The Chimney Tops Trail is one of the most popular hikes along Newfound Gap Road. The trail owes much of its popularity to its relatively short length, and its outstanding panoramic views from the pinnacles. Its length, less than 2 miles, however, makes for a very steep hike - so much so that many hikers don't even reach the top. The first half of the trail is relatively tame. However, to reach the summit, hikers have to climb more than 960 feet over the course of the last mile! This is similar to the rate of elevation gain youll find on some of the 14,000-foot peaks in Colorado.

23 hours ago

4 days ago

amazing trail

Worth the very steep hike to the top! The end of the run is the best, amazing views!!

6 days ago

Awesome challenging and short hike! Great lunch spot at the false summit and even better view from the lower 2nd summit

6 days ago

Smokey mountains are always beautiful. You get a great view at the top, but you have to climb some rocks! It can be a little intimidating.

11 days ago

Very difficult, but very worth it. Went for the sunset to avoid the crowds and it was perfect. Saw maybe only 10 other people (and one of them was very helpful on how to do the vertical parts). I think my legs will be noodles for a while... If you go for the sunset make sure to bring a headlamp or flashlight for the walk back :)

12 days ago

Amazing trail. This is a top 10 trail in the USA. 2/3 of it was uphill so it is not easy. Beautiful views. The end climb on the chimney rocks was very cool for those who dare.

17 days ago

Absolutely stunning! Longest 2 miles of my life, but beyond worth it. I didn't make it to the summit because of how hot the rocks were mid day when we were there, made it about 20 foot from the tippy top. I couldn't grip onto the dark rock for more than a few seconds, I decided better safe than sorry that far up in the mountains. The view 20 feet away was still breathtaking.

18 days ago

one of the best in GSM national park!

19 days ago

As a beginner this trail kickend my ass.
But it was totally worth the view at the top

21 days ago

I loved the views on this trail! I thought it was a little challenging because you incline quite a bit in a short amount of time but it was definitely worth it! Would do it again

23 days ago

24 days ago

Favorite hike of the trip. The views throughout the hike are incredible and it's not too difficult. It's really steep but the path is mostly gravel. Made the hike up and decided to take the scramble to the peak. We went in the middle of the day so it was absolutely packed, but everyone was extremely cautious and very friendly and willing to help anyone who needed it. The views from the peak blew me away, by far the best I have ever seen. If you make the hike, it's absolutely worth it to climb that last bit to the top

25 days ago

One of the best views I've ever seen and I have hiked many trails. This is a heavily trafficked trail so the early you get there the better. Lots and lots of stairs but worth every step!

1 month ago

I loved this hike! We got to the trail head at 7 am to start and were the only ones on the peak. It was nice to have the mountain to ourselves. Id recommended going up early because the parking lot gets packed. Make sure to go on a clear day because the views are breathtaking.

1 month ago

I did not summit. I came really close, made it most of the way up the scramble. Though when it became basically straight up I couldn't get enough foot holes in the rocks to climb the slate rock. But I did have an amazing view from where I leaned back on the rock. Probably over a 200 degree view. Good for me!
Lots of stairs!

1 month ago

One of my favorite trails in the GSMNP. There are a few very steep ascents, but the trail is well groomed and worth the effort. The summit involves some intense scrambling to get to the panoramic view, but for those who wish to not make the extra climb, there are enjoyable views at the clearing.

1 month ago

steep and lots of stairs! But the view from the top is awesome! well worth the climb.

1 month ago

Definitely a lot steeper of a summit than anticipated, but the hike to the top was worth the views! Lots of stairs, but great waterfalls and a rushing stream. Don't forget water!

1 month ago