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This is a must trail to hike if your up to a challenging hike with great views along the way while your in the Smokey’s. Start as early as possible right after sunrise and be prepared for climate change as you make your way up the mountain. Plenty of slippery rocks so have good hiking shoes and walking stick.

Very well maintained and easy to follow. If the rivers are low it really isn’t hard, and even if they are there are cables at every big crossing. Well worth the hike for the view of the cliffs and the waterfall.

hiking
1 day ago

We absolutely loved this hike on our honeymoon. The terrain is beautiful and unique with some of the coolest caves and waterfalls I’ve seen on a single hike. It took us about 7 hours. We hiked to Sheep Cave as well as to the top of Virgin Falls.

Worth noting:
On our way to Virgin Falls, we went the shorter way (Left) and came back by Sheeps Cave trail. The sign indicates that Sheeps Cave is a longer hike but I’ll say that the trail seemed much easier and I know it didn’t take us as long either. Both trails are beautiful but getting to see Sheeps cave and also having a bit easier hike leads me to say I’d go to the right to Sheeps Cave trail despite it being longer.

Remember to pack plenty of water and food and possibly a change of clothes at the least. We are fairly experienced day hikers and this trail is certainly hard but not grueling. If you prepare correctly, start early and take breaks when you need, it’s a very enjoyable long hike. This would be a great trail to hike to the falls and camp for the night, hike out the next day. I think we will do that next time as it is a long and tough single day hike for us.

Challenging! Little easy to get lost but just follow your white marks!

backpacking
1 day ago

This was a great overnight hike. The falls were amazing. We did this hike on a weeknight so it was not crowded. We camped at the falls, but I think on our next trip we will stay at Martha's point.

hiking
2 days ago

Beautiful views on top!!! Told 2 be on lookout for rattlesnakes didn’t see any thankfully !!!

Done this trail multiple times! Great views at the top, but along the trail as well. One of the best bang for your bucks in the National Park! Trail is more crowded than you would think an 11 mile trail would be though.

Way more difficult than I expected and I consider myself a fairly seasoned hiker. The incline on the way up- yikes! Beautiful waterfall at the end but have no illusions thinking it’s an easy hike.

great things to see...bridges..river..coves and more a little more difficult and steep up near the bluff but worth it ..we got a glimpse of a rattler at the top but he kept his distance

I'd say this trail was moderate-hard, especially for a not-so-seasoned hiker. The trail was a little hard to find, but there were plenty of friendly people along the way to point me in the right direction - must get down to the dam, go left, across the little suspension bridge and then you start climbing up on the white marked trail. At one point the trail is literally climbing up rocks. Like everyone says, there's a couple of lookouts where you can see the Alexian across the way, but you have to keep going a decent ways before you get to Edwards. Overall really awesome hike of about 4.5 miles, and I wouldn't recommend wearing chacos; although it was nice to step in the water on the way back.

Great water fall, little bit rough getting just because of the tree roots. Very beautiful!!

I took my girls on this hike! Unforgettable! I will do this hike again with some backpacking to go!

what an awesome hike! I decided to go counter clockwise so my first 3 miles were along the ridgeline; some great photo opportunities while on the ridge. the return was through the gorge and although it was just as fun, coming out was a bit tiresome with the extreme accent; the valley line would have been more enjoyable if I had come after a rain, because there was no water

Have done this trail twice both times in early April, bring spikes due to the ice in the trail. Beautiful views of the smokies in multiple locations. One of my favorite trails.

Beautiful swimming hole. Perfect for a hot summer day.

difficult trail as the incline up the mountain is rather steep
..a few creek crossings leave you with wet feet lol but..we saw 2 black snakes but no other wildlife. The cemetery was a bit disappointing, just a few marker stones with only one actuall grave stone from the 1920s...overall a great workout!

I went on this trail and it had the best views I’ve ever seen

5 days ago

This is one of my favs in the Upper Cumberland! Half of what makes this so much fun are all the water crossings. They range from ankle to waste deep. Cables run across for a stable handhold but they sometimes wash out after a really bad storm. (Do NOT go down here if there's a flood warning) The view from the top of the window cliffs is icing in the cake.

If starting at TH at bathrooms, you’ll go UP the rocky draw on the way out. Note, about 1/2 way up turn LEFT to stay on main trail. Straight is steep, not marked and way harder.

hiking
6 days ago

Loved this hike! There is beauty everywhere you look! Me and my friend completed this hike in one day. If I was ever doing it again, I would do it as a overnight trip. It is a hard hike. We thought it was harder getting down to the falls instead of back up. We did all the side trails Sheep’s Cave, Martha’s Pretty Point, we took the trail to top of virgin falls to see the cave. Very nice and a good place to cool yourself off! Wish we would have had more time to hang up a hammock and relax but had to make it out before dark. Our record time from AllTrails was 9:33 hours to complete. We did eat lunch and sit down at the falls and explore some! AllTrails clocked us at 13.9 miles not sure if that is correct or not my garmin watch said 12.8 miles so not sure which is right. It is so beautiful and worth the hike! Start really early if your not camping overnight!

Great trail beautiful views , very well maintained .

My 58yr old heavy set mother hiked to the overlook with no problem. I hiked to the base of the waterfall with my 2yr old niece and went swimming. The hike down was fairly easy, just watch your footing with tree roots and loose rocks. To cross the river we went up river to where it was only 2 feet to cross. You follow the river to get to the base. There are life jackets of all sizes for anyone to wear at the base. Amazing idea for people who can’t swim or have trouble. I put my niece in the children’s one and we swam for about 20min. I’d rate the hike down as a 1.5 and the hike up a 2.3 there’s some stairs and like 3 switch backs. The hike to the overlook is really easy that would be a 1. Overall an AMAZING hike! If you have bad ankles or knees it would be doable but would take you some time. If you are a moderate hiker this is a breeze.

Challenging and the creeks and meadows were beautiful. The park is full of wildflowers and your in the shade most of the time. That combined with crossing the creeks makes it a great spot for a summer hiking.

The hike in wasn't bad at all. The last mile has a lot of rocks in the trail so beware of that. Now the hike out was a challenge. The elevation change is mainly in that last mile. The walls themselves are beautiful, definitely worth the hike in and out. For those wanting to hike it soon, there is water at the end right now.

hiking
9 days ago

Beautiful trail. Definitely a favorite. We always do the Day loop option which clocks per my watch at 3.8 miles. It is super dog friendly. There are some rocky spots that give the trail so much beauty. Only down fall is during the summer it does trace a popular party cove so you are going to get some noise and nonsense from that. Other then that we love it.

hiking
10 days ago

Very easy to get to the overlook, but be prepared for climbing and water passes throughout to get to the base of the falls. Extremely crowded, but beautiful!

hiking
10 days ago

The hike was great. Definitely come early to get parking since it’s limited. I would also rate it a moderate hike. Good hike for families to bring kids. The falls was beautiful. Saw two salamanders when I got it the falls.

The trail is rocky and well maintained. It took us about 3 hours to hike up but we were carrying larger packs because we camped out a few nights. There are plenty of places to refill water so no real need to cary more than you absolutely need. The parking lot is plenty large but still recommend getting there early as Alum Cave Trail is the busiest. We probably met 50-100 hikers climbing up as we came back down (the reason I rated it only 4 stars). Next trip to Leconte, we will take a less popular trail.

hiking
10 days ago

My favorite day hike. GPS length varies between 5.5-6.2 miles. Save some energy for the ascent as you finish the trail!

We were hiking this trail when it was little rain and that was awesome experience,overall this trail is amazing with beautiful views ,very recommended

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