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.

To do Map
VIEW FULL MAP

We love Blood Mountain! It’s a challenging hike, but the views are beautiful and well worth the effort!

Loved this hike! I went up Byron Reece and got a little turned around at the intersection of AT and Freeman’s- I ended up going around Freeman’s Loop and hiking back down the AT. About 7 miles in all today.... the view at the top of the rocks by Blood Mountain Shelter are great! I would rate the hike as moderate- maybe moderately difficult for a new hiker- didn’t expect it to be so rocky! Glad I had my trail shoes on! Took about 3 hours with about a 25 minute rest at the shelter. I’d do again and come up the AT and back down freeman

Beautiful, but challenging! The only disappointment was no view at the summit. A decent amount of people that we needed to pass. Overall, a wonderful day of hiking!

Tough but nice. Technical in many places. The campsites were awesome.

A well balanced trail, with a beautiful hike along a creek at the base, really awesome rock features along the way, and amazing views at the top. A hiking stick does help as it's pretty slick on the inclines/declines. As well, wear some layers given the elevation change as it can cool down quite a bit at the top if the sun is covered by the clouds. And, do yourself a favor and hike the extra .7-1 mile to Myrtles Point. The view there are unbridled. One of my favorite trails I've done even next to some great trails in RMNP and Zion!

Beautiful hike with amazing views. We only went to bluffs due to some of the hikers in our group.

Recommend this hike because it is family friendly hike. It runs along the river and you get to hear the water all along the hike. You cross the river several times on log bridges.

Real fun trail with a fun mixture of paths.

Excellent hike,
great views well worth it, hike listed as hard due to the elevation gain and some steep steps (but still steps).
alum cave is a good little hike many were not prepared even saw some with strollers lol... not a stroller event at all you should have sturdy hiking boots or shoes we passed someone who slipped and broke her arm on the way up she was being escorted by park rangers back down the path. we went all the way to to the top stopped for rest as frequently as we felt without being rushed had half gallon insulated hot tea and sandwhiches and plenty of snacks to last an entire day. at a lesurely pace with three major stops to rest and eat on the way as well as exploring around the summit and it took us 8 hours or so.. lots of stopping for pictures as well. i would layer like an onion wind chill factor on top of temparature change specially around dusk was significant... on our way down we helped escort a family of 3 girls and both parents that weren't prepared for the dark and the length - one small flashlight and the night was getting chiller (we both had day packs lights and enough food water for an entire day trip)

Very fun and great views.

Bucket list success. Difficult yes but glad I did it. October 2018

Beautiful hike and amazing day. Me and my wife completed in 3.5 hours. It starts with Byron Reece trailhead and there is 0.7 miles of rocky stairs meeting at intersection for Freeman and Appalachian Trail. We took AT to climb and loop back to freeman trail. AT its bit heavily trafficked and freeman trail path is low trafficked. Freeman Trail is rocky and it rained today, so was very slippery. But overall the view from top calls for another visit to this beauty.

Its out first hike on Appalachian Trail

backpacking
7 days ago

We just hiked this on 10/10/18 . I can tell you that the trails are not clearly marked. the trail head does t even tell you your at conasauga river trail. it's just a big sign with a blurry map and you walk dow a road a little with a little wooden sign that just says trail. almost missed it. once you get to the river it is beautiful down there. but it's very hard to tell which way to go. we went left oops. haha wrong way came back after a pretty good distant walk. went right this time. found the trail most of the way think we crossed the river 5 times. before we couldn't see a trail anymore so we gave up found a camping spot and camped for the night. that was the night of hurricane Michael. well we woke up and the rover did rise quite a bit and was flowing fast so we decided to pack up and head back. Just wish the trails where clearly marked in some way. even with just marking tape . other then that we will be back to do it again!!!

hiking
7 days ago

Beautiful hike. My wife and I hiked Virgin Falls in a day, left out around 8 AM in a foggy drizzle and by the time we reached Virgin Falls it was sunny and perfect. We did the main trail, spur to overlook, sheep cave, top of the falls and bottom of the falls and came in just over 11 miles total. Both Big Laurel Falls and Virgin Falls are pretty awesome. The trail has some sections over rocks on the descent in/ascent out that I would assume give the trail it's rating...they were tough, but not too bad. Once you reach Virgin Falls, I highly recommend the short climb down to the base, it's so worth it, (be careful it's muddy) and the short climb around to the top (again, so worth it!). We spent 45 minutes to an hour at Virgin Falls and at least another 30-45 at Big Laurel Falls, took our time and were still back to the lot in 7 hours total. I hiked it in chacos, the wife had boots...I could see where chacos might be an issue for some on the way down. Probably going to go back in a few weeks when the leaves are peaking. Also think it would be a great overnight and the camping options look great. Almost rated it a 5 but wasn't as well marked in some places as I expected, but still an excellent hike!

FYI- When you get to the Loop to the falls where it's 0.5 to the falls one way and 0.8 (Sheep Cave then falls) the other way, it might help to know that the shorter trek to the left is a fairly steep descent followed by a climb the last 0.2 mile or so to the falls. The slightly longer route to the right (also to the falls via Sheep Cave) is much flatter and possibly even quicker.

My brother, cousin and I all hiked this In about 5-6 hours being in pretty decent shape. If you plan on going all the way to the top, I'd bring a lunch and plenty of water. If you only plan on going to the "inspiration point" just a water will do. There are multiple points that have fantastic views! The top view was great as well! I only give 4 stars because once at the cabins, the path to the peak isnt marked very well and can easily confuse most hikers. Overall was a good time.

Awesome hike. Was the best we have taken since hiking the smokies.

There are a few portions of this hike that are steep, slick, etc., but they are all well worth it once you hit the top of LeConte. There are great views throughout, but you will really want to take the time to enjoy the finale.

Great spots to let kids play and loved the waterfall!

If you're only doing one hike in the Great Smoky Mountains, I'd go with Charlie's Bunion. Otherwise, the summit is at the sign that says Chimney Tops once you're past the Mt LeConte Shelter (don't just keep on going up!). Also, there's water at the shelter which is super helpful.

Arrived 9am on a Sunday morning in early October. Parking lot was almost full but still a few spots. Seems to be a popular spot for overnight camping so weekend mornings are probably the worst in terms of parking, along with holidays.

Went up the AT and down Freeman - found this hike pretty easy, got up in just over an hour. Couple of good spots for views but not too many tbh.

Freeman descent was very easy, it was very wet but still not a single area where I was concerned.

Overall not much of a challenge for anyone used to hiking.

Keep in mind all reviews are relative - I hike a lot.

Pretty nice views from the top of Blood Mountain Trail. Overall it’s a bit of a rocky hike and when I went it had just rained so it is a bit slippery. There is one part after the freeman trail meets the Byron Reese And Appalachian trails that it is difficult to see where the AT goes next. The freeman trail is a bit narrow on the way back.

hiking
12 days ago

Awesome hike! Started at the chestnut lead trailhead and hiked down to the river trail. The river crossings are a lot of fun but make sure you have sturdy shoes and two hiking poles. There are multiple crossings! And as a FYI the hike back up the chestnut lead trail is a killer - basically straight uphill for two miles. But overall an amazing hike!

We did this hike today. I think it’s more than 5.5 miles up. Once you get to Mt. Leconte, you still have 1/2-3/4 of a mile to the look out point. But the view is definitely worth it.

GO HIKE THIS TRAIL...yes it is steep and rocky and wet...but you are in the Smokie’s...what do you expect...you came to hike and are using this app...just get to the Alum Cave lot early...take snacks and water...this is an 8 to 9 hour gig...but worth every minute...there are a lot of people and for good reason, duh...once completed you can then tell your friends you hiked a HARD trail and loved it...

The hike was absolutely amazing. We stayed and watched the sunset at the top and hiked down via the AT with headlamps. It was by far the best sunset I’ve seen in GA! It took us about an hour and a half to get up and maybe 45 minutes to get down but we hiked at a pretty quick pace. Not the easiest hike but definitely not horribly challenging.

Amazing views throughout entire hike. Definitely gets tough the last 2 miles but worth it! We came across various aged hikers throughout so as long as you pace yourself to how well your in shape you’ll be fine and be at the top with a big smile!

We are novice hikers and this was an ambitious trail. Let me say this trail was hard! We hiked on Monday September 24. It was still more hikers on trail than we expected. We finally made it to the Cave and ate a light lunch. Last few steps to the Cave were pretty steep. We went on past to Leconte Lodge and made it in about 4 hours with breaks. We almost turned around but I started smelling the fir trees and said let’s keep going we’ve got to be getting close. The lemonade and hot chocolate at lodge were lackluster but a welcome change from water. We refilled our canteens and got our “I hiked it in 2018” merch and rested a bit. We made it back down in about three hours and I believe the descent was worse on our bodies than the ascent. Definitely did a number on our knees. The hot tub was a welcome retreat that night. But it was definitely worth every minute of it!!! Next time I’ll stay at the lodge for the night!!

first time ever hiking this trail on July 4th 18. all I can say is amazing. it had its difficult areas but not too bad in my opinion. definitely recommend.

Fantastic Trail with incredible views. Good for mostly all ages. I will say though, come prepared. Shoes you don’t care to mess up, but MAKE SURE THEY ARE COMFY. The trail is one long hike and you do go extremely high all the way to the tippy Top. But if you can make it I can’t even begin to put into words how incredible it is. If there is one mistake we made, LEAVE EARLY. You’ll thank yourself. Don’t wait till 12 noon or later. You won’t give yourself enough time. Bring a walking stick if possible too. You will need enough time to take breaks. Take a chance and go for it though. It’s a hard one but so worth every bit of pain you go through getting to the top.

amazing, difficult hike. took me 4.5 hours to hike up. we continued to cliff tops. amazing views!
took another 3 hours to hike down.

This trail was absolutely beautiful and had tons of different scenery spots and cascades along the creek. It is a tough trail and you should definitely make sure you are in shape before you do this! The views were worth the intense upgraded climb! It was a little busy, but we did it on Sunday at the end of September.

Load More