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great hike, but be prepared. it is not an easy trail. this loop transitions from a well maintained trail to steep stone steps, to rock hopping across areas where no trail is defined. the stagecoach rd is amazing, when you think of how it was built, hiking up it, know it is a long steep grade on a rock road. the rim trail leaving the stagecoach rd is your typical trail, and easy hiking untill it gets back around to the point it has to cross Collins river. it becomes more difficult there with some rock hopping.

overall I liked it, the camp sites are nice, water is plentiful, while it is not an easy loop, it is not overly difficult. it is well marked.

Always a great trail have done in all season and winter is the best

This is my favorite hike in the Smokies. Beautiful views and lots of amazing natural wonders to take in. Can be difficult at times but is well worth the effort. Can't wait to do this again when the wild flowers are in bloom.

on Savage Day Loop

3 days ago

this is the fourth time I've been to this trail. usually it's great but today the trail was closed due to dangerous conditions and fallen trees from a recent storm. We hiked anyway but encountered many obstacles that forced us off the main trail. We never made it to the falls due to impassable piles of large fallen timber, brush and branches. Heed the warning signs until they finally get the trail cleaned up and cleared again.

hiking
4 days ago

We did not go all the way to mount leconte. My hubby and I stopped at the bluff. From the trail head to the bluff, it’s about 2.2 miles. What a great hike. Really loved this trail. The mossy trees and creek were amazing. The arch was super cool. The bluff had icicles hanging that were falling down like missles. Loved it. This is a very popular trail so go early.

This trail had a bit of everything. the view from the top was amazing too! just beware of the ice all over the trail this time of the year

I have so much respect for this mountain after hiking this trail. Definitely one of the hardest hikes I've done, but also the most rewarding. There are so many beautiful landmarks to keep you inspired along the way.

This was pretty easy to find but my Garmin said around 11 miles at the end, not 9.6 miles. It was an easy hike with a few good hills. Nice views and little foot traffic once you get past the parking area.

My wife and I hiked to Mt. LeConte via Alum Cave Trail. We have never gone this way before but have done it several times via Rainbow Falls and Grotto Falls. No matter which way you go, it is beautiful. The foliage was gorgeous.

This hike has it all! Great variety of trees, views and difficulty including the cave, stone steps, and exposed rock where you will be thankful for the handholds. Be sure to wear waterproof shoes and once you get to the Lodge keep going for better views from the Cliff Top.

It is absolutely beautiful

Don’t miss this!!Absolutely amazing!!! Majestic views. It’s a long hike, start early so you can stop and take pictures along the way. It took us 8 hours round trip moving at a goos pace and making a few stops. Don’t eat the sack lunch at Le Conte lodge, it was horrible. Pack your own food and plenty to drink.

hiking
11 days ago

Me and my sweetheart Hoss went on this hike and it was beautiful,the climb is so worth it!! Beautiful views and cliffs.Seen the first snow of the year! The view from the top was beautiful,it was cold and windy. But cant wait to do it again. I couldn't ask for a better hiking partner,he wore me out!!

hiking
11 days ago

Very nice hike - fairly easy - just the distance. Waterfall is beautiful as is the overlook. Great walk for someone like me trying to get into shape and get some outdoor time. Was fun!

My favorite trail in the smokies. This is also my favorite route to mount leconte. During fall and spring parking can be full so leave early. Beautiful trail during the fall!

Awesome trail. The views are excellent. We did the full loop clockwise, which I would highly recommend. Going down into the gorge was very steep and rock filled. The gorge itself was lovely, and the river was flowing pretty strong. The way back up to the rim was not near as steep as the descent (again why I would recommend clockwise). Overall a good challenge but very doable if you are active.

Great hike especially later in the year. You get to see multiple layers of the forest on the way up. Beautiful at the top. Moderately tough hike up, but if you go at your own pace it’s more than doable. Wear good shoes. Weather can change throughout the day.

Awesome trail. We logged 14 miles adding the two additional trails at the summit/lodge. Cliff tops is a must do for the views. Lodge is super quaint, check out the Lamas by the dining room. This is a strenuous hike with a good elevation from the base to the trailhead. Nice resting spot at Inspiration. Don’t forget to look for the eye of the needle. Others have mentioned it is very popular and well trailed. There are two parking lots at the trail head.

Great hike. The view is amazing

[TL;DR: Solid trail, good workout. Varied terrain so you won't get bored. Watch out for false trails.]

First, if you're reading this close to the date of this post, go now. The leaves just started really changing color about a week ago, and now it is in full swing. Lots of pines, but in the deciduous areas it is all red and gold. The trail is casually beautiful, with the occasional stunner just laying nonchalantly in full view of the trail. Waterfalls, cliffs, boulder fields, etc.

Second, someone below said this is harder that Fiery Gizzard; I would disagree. I would say it is equal to Fiery Gizzard to Raven's Point Loop, but with a different kind of difficulty. I would compare it more closely to Lower Loop at Fall Creek Falls, but with rougher paths and more and longer scrambles.

You will have a scramble on either side of the trail head. The one to the right (counterclockwise) is more continuous, with no real flat spots until you're out of the scramble. The one to the left (clockwise) is not a continuous scramble, but seemed more difficult due to a number of odd angles and weird transitions. I would call them equally difficult, but in different ways. I would recommend going to the right from trailhead, though, if only because the left-hand side gives you a beautiful spot to appreciate once you get close to trailhead on the way back.

Outside of the scrambles the path tends to be very broken and rough, but nothing worrisome. You will need to cross 4-5 streams, so keep an eye on the rain and prepare accordingly.

The ascent on the way back is fairly rapid, but not too much so.

I will note that I cut the loop close to the end: I cut across the connector trail by the sawmill campsite instead of completing the last nub of the loop, trying to save 30 minutes to an hour as I was racing sunset (late start, thanks Google Maps). It was a good choice, as I made it back to the parking lot just in time for a golden sunset. I carry night gear, but doing a scramble in the dark on a new trail did not seem like a good idea.

One important warning I haven't seen anyone else mention: there are false trails everywhere. Some seen ike abandoned paths, some for locals, some seem natural, but it is very easy to go off trail here. I went down two false trails (one even had a wooden ramp along a cliff edge), and I ran into two groups that had lost members further back on the trail, which I hadn't seen. One very tricky spot is when you cross the suspension bridge when heading couter-clockwise. Once over that there'll be a small footbridge. At that point the trail will be slightly behind your right shoulder; take an immediate right. Someone has tried to block the false trail (immediately in front if the footbridge) with a wall of branches, but it just looks like trail debris. Lots of blazes down, so when in doubt, just stop and break out the app, otherwise you'll be off trail and have no idea.

All in all, a good day trail. I completed 13 miles in about 8 hours, counting breaks, without being in any great rush (cutting to the connector did help). Bear in mind with the varied terrain and scrambles your speed is not going to remain steady. Also remember that you've have a moderately long scramble wanting for you at the end of the trail no matter which way you go, so don't exhaust yourself. Everyone I met on trail was overnighting, but you shouldn't have a problem doing a day hike.

hiking
16 days ago

My wife and me climbed it on October 30th. start at 10 am. parking lot was packed. trail so crowded. if you keep climbing through Boulevard Trail you reach the Mt Le Conte top.

hiking
16 days ago

Beautiful views! There are some rocky trails, so take your time. Also a set of viewing binoculars for people who are color blind!

did this trail Oct 13. nice trail. not the best rim trail. there is a huge mistake on this trail map. I took the trail to the gulf first on advice from a hiking pro. saving the bolder field for last. better than a 3 mile up hill out of the gulf. If you do this route please note that when you get to Sawmill Camp take the connector trail to the right just past the foot bridge. The map on here shows you going on the river bed and making a large loop to the stagecoach trail. I tried to blaze this trail but lost track of the trail. Had to backtrack to the bridge. If there was a trail there it would add around a mile and a half. Which it did add 1 mile on my hike going in and back out. Just watch for the connector trail on the right past the bridge. It takes you to the Stagecoach.

An awesome trail!! Beautiful views and amazing hike. Don’t be fooled by its popularity, it’s tough, but worth the climb!

We’ve hiked in Colorado, California, Patagonia etc and think this is one of the best hikes we’ve ever experienced. Beautiful streams, gorgeous views and so well maintained. Highly recommend!!

Overall a good, easy trail with a great viewpoint, waterfall, and swinging bridge. As others have mentioned, it’s only about 4 miles round trip from the parking lot to Edward’s Point.

Great hike! Lots of variety along the trail, and you can’t beat the views from the top! There’s also a great little building at the top to eat lunch and enjoy some hot cocoa before hiking back down. Highly recommend if you have the time and are pretty fit. Take lots of water! If it’s icy, be sure to take spikes. It’s very difficult to walk on the rocks without them.

This is a hard strenuous trail which runs beside the river until you reach the half way Alum Cave inspiration point. Mount Leconte summit is 2.7 miles from this point. This is a good turnaround point too.

Mt Leconte Clifftops, Leconte lodge and it’s library are amazing places to check out.
Coffee, Lunch, music, books and board games are available for hikers

Even in the rain, this hike was beautiful. Water rolling beside most of the trail going up/down provided gorgeous views. Hiking shoes/boots highly recommended in the rain as the roots and puddles will be tough using anything else. Will do this again when the wx clears. Not many people on the trail today and was able to find parking in lot around noon.

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