Cooper Road and Rabbit Creek Loop Trail is a 16.1 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Townsend, Tennessee that features a river and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until November. Horses are also able to use this trail.
Did most of Coopers Road as part of a Quasi-lollipop loop with Cane Creek, Hatcher Mtn and Little Bottoms trails. Not much to see until you get on Little Bottoms trail. Cane creek has a nice campground that is rarely used and it also has an old cemetery that is worth seeing if you venture out this way. After the cemetery on Cane Creek, the trail gets very overgrown going out to the park boundary. I retraced back to Cooper Road and hit Hatcher Mountain and looped back around via Little Bottoms Trail. I did this as a solo trying to get in some good miles plus I'm trying to get into the 900 miler club. Great 15 miler for exercise, but you're not going to see much.
Nice walk and great way to enjoy the woods. Not a whole lot of views but peaceful. Several options for loops. My goal is to complete all trails in Smokies
We did Cooper road trail , starting in Cades Cove and went almost 3 miles to Stony Ridge. Nice easy trail , a few trees down that have to be stepped over and small streams to cross. Precious few wildflowers.
This is a very steep climb, the hardest hike I've done yet. We climbed to campground #15 and camped. a lot of bear activity but we didn't see any. Crossed Rabbit creaked and camped by the water. Only saw a few people. Even though it was difficult I loved it and would do it again!
We only did about 9 miles of this trail but there are a few things to note.
We started on the trailhead at Alum Creek road. There's a tree bridge crossing the river at the beginning. After about half a mile after that the trail starts to gain elevation. The trail gets steep and the climb goes on for a couple of miles. Seriously, every time you turn the corner you're climbing even higher. Once you reach the top though it's pretty smooth sailing the rest of the way.
We went in the middle of the day and only saw a handful of people, just a couple and three horseriders. Oh yeah, this trail is used by horses so watch your step. The scenery was great and the views at the top were awesome.
One thing to be aware of.
We decided to cut the loop in half since we haven't been there before and I hadn't hiked in forever. According to the map on the trailhead board (they were out of maps to take with you so make sure to print one out or save it to your phone beforehand) there was an intersection at about the halfway point and if you take a left (I think it was called Hanna's Branch or something like that) it cuts across and rejoins the loop. Well, one thing that isn't noted on the map is that there is a river crossing about half a mile before you rejoin the loop. A river that really can't be crossed without a horse or without getting really wet. We'd had quite a bit of rain this fall so maybe it was bigger than usual. We had to turn around and head back before we ran out of daylight, but that was annoying to say the least.