Explore To Do - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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Part of trail unknowingly closed "until September" after I read it supposedly opened around August 1st. Arrived at 5pm from 4 hrs travelling, and a citation issued on the windshield of our car the following morning for camping d/t campsite being closed, but too far in to hike out after arrival. Embarrassed to be escorted out (on our way out) by Park Rangers (eldest with 3 months experience after telling us we would be cleared of citation for not actually having been 'found camping.') Beautiful sights, however. Do your research more in depth than I did, apparently, before staying here or hiking past 5pm.

hiking
10 hours ago

Breaktaking experiences of caves, patterned rocks, and mountain views.

Most of the trail is meh, the falls are great. Be sure to keep going back until you see the large drop off that’s impassable.

Loved this section of the AT! So beautiful. Took my girls (age 7 & 10) backpacking for the weekend and this was great for them as well. They are pretty tough kiddos and did great. We stayed at the Mountain Harbour B&B, and after an awesome, huge breakfast, we were shuttled to Carvers Gap and started our hike back to 19E. Big Bald was intense but we loved every minute of it. This is defiantly a section I would love to repeat.

Awesome hike. Saw two little bears about a half mile into the trail. There are so many amazing sights along the trail and the terrain keeps changing. You’ll cross streams, crawl through little caves and scramble over boulders. There’s so much to see we spent six hours out there. Bring a lot of drinks and you can’t put on enough bug spray.

Beautiful trail. I did this with a 1st time hiker, although he said it was difficult he really enjoyed it. There are a few switch backs and the trail can be somewhat steep at times, the majority of the trail is very shaded. Not too many water sources so bring enough just in case one of the streams has dried up. I highly recommend packing a lunch so that you can really enjoy the fire tower and its beautiful views! A bit of a boulder scramble to make it to the firehouse, but the 360 degree views are amazing! At one point the trail was so dense with fog that visibility was roughly 30 ft. It was really cool and I highly recommend it.

Great trails and mostly shaded which is great in TN heat! Plan ahead - no bathrooms.

Highly recommend. Beautiful 360 degree views. Areas of open fields with wildflowers. Areas for camping/shelter and water sources. Would make for a great hike in, overnight stay. It rained on us all day which made for some very wet terrain. Even areas of standing water. Difficult at times but never a regret.

great elevation. it is winding. it is narrow so can't walk side by side with a friend. saw some frogs. leads to a circle of wooden benches.

beautiful, even when it's a torrential downpour.

This hike will make you feel alive again!!

hiking
20 days ago

Hiking was very difficult but well worth the trip. The hike was definitely more than 5 miles according to the fit bit it was 7.17 pack plenty of water and snacks.

Very fun hike. Was a little foggy when we arrived but still worth it. Met a few very cool people on the AT and hiked with them for a few miles.

Actually backpacked this last summer. We brought our dog and I would recommend staying on the top of the ridge to ravens point if you’re hiking from sycamore falls. Hiking into the valley is quite treacherous with all the boulders, especially for a dog.

Bear Waller Gap Trail is one of my favorites. It is a challenging trail in places. I usually do a full length both ways. I suggest starting at Defeated creek entrance if you plan on a round trip. if you only want to do one way or are a beginner, I would suggest starting at the overlook and having a ride to return you to your vehicle.

One of the best backpacking trips I’ve done. We chose the campsite on the top of Big Hump, and although it got super windy at one point and we were clouded in most of the time that night, we woke up in the morning to clear skies and a spectacular view of the mountains in every direction, and it was so worth the trek up there.

Me and my friends had a lot of fun hiking this trail! I highly recommend going off the beaten path when you see the opportunity for a good view. However, be very vigilant in keeping an eye on the trail markers, it will take sharp turns and leave you lost if you aren’t careful. I wouldn’t recommend taking young children on this trail because parts of it are difficult and very steep.

My first time backpacking with my ASU class and had a great experience! And the sunset from the top of the little hump was so beautiful!

Great trail, but difficult for older and beginners. Enjoyed it!!!

I found this hike pretty easy! Trail was pretty well marked and we did it counterclockwise. Very beautiful rock formations. The middle section has some rock scrambling but not much. It was fun to go thru the caves and rock tunnels. My husband ended up spraining his ankle mid way thru, so we had a very slow final 2.5 miles... but even with that we finished in less than 4 hours. Probably could have finished in 3 hours. The first 1 1/2 miles and last 2 miles are fairly “flat” and easy trail.

hiking
1 month ago

I did this trail this past weekend. I stopped by the visitor center and asked about this trail. The lady at the desk was very nice and told me this would be difficult and the trail would be a little slick from the rain. I grabbed my pack with my pup loaded up and we headed out. The first look down was a little daunting. I love hiking yet I’m scared of heights. Go figure! The first 10 fret descent was easy enough. There was a section that you are not able to reach the cable and it’s almost a straight 5 foot cliff face. This part is a little tricky, especially with a dog strapped to your back. We made it down pretty easy after that. The view was worth it. Absolutely amazing. The hike back up was easy to get up til the one troublesome spot earlier. This is a steep climb so your heart will race.

Not a great trail. It is overgrown with no real views. Also, not a lot of people hike this trail, so prepare to battle some spider webs. We did see some deer though

Def. not for beginners or those not in good health. Also I am 5"5 and halfway down for a good portion of the cable trail I had to go without being able to hold onto the cable because it was up too high so keep that in mind for anyone 5"5 or shorter when doing cable trail. It was also very hard to find the trail head and the GPS directions kept taking you to another trail head when cable trail is on another road farther down from where the directions tell you it is. Despite those difficulties the hike was well worth it with the view and was a great place to swim.( make sure to bring a life jacket as it gets very deep towards the falls). Also watch for snakes in between and under the rocks. I saw two snakes in the rocks today.

Amazing hike. Not for the faint of heart. Go counter clock-wise, makes scrambling, climbing and looking for signs much easier. In July not to much water, but some rocks are slippery, so poles and good hikers are a must. Take your time and enjoy the scenery. My husband and I are avid hikers. Took us about 5 hours with a stop for lunch at the overlook. Best to plan an hour per mile.

Very steep trail that requires use of a cable to navigate. The swimming hole at the bottom is worth the effort but you should be experienced at rock/mountain climbing. Do not bring children or pets!

A great hike if you're looking for a challenge. We began from Cosby camground and took the Low Gap Trail to the AT. This first stretch is completely uphill and a steep grade at times. The first bit follows the river and then crosses over a trickle before meeting up with the AT. This is the last water you'll have access to, so fill up and filter if needed. Bugs are relentless (or at least in the summer when I went) on this stretch to the AT intersection. Once you meet the AT, it levels off and you can quicken your pace, as it is a pretty simple hike to the Cammerer approach trail. The approach trail is a short hike up to the fire tower, with gorgeous views. Both sunset and sunrise can be viewed unobstructed from the tower and are truly gorgeous. On a Saturday in the Smokies, we saw a total of about 8 people and had the whole place to ourselves for the night. An awesome hike and great views, would definitely recommend to experienced hikers

Great balds with fantastic views. The most beautiful place I have been so far.

Absolutely beautiful! Will repeat again soon.

hiking
1 month ago

Have done this hike quite a few times and it never ceases to amaze us! My watch always records it at about 1.7. Trail markers are fairly easy to follow and the trail is well traveled. Did the trail with kids and they love it! It is technical in some sections (the descent down into the waterfall area and the ascent out of the waterfall area).

Busy on a summer Saturday.

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