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    shannon vandergriff reviewed Laurel, Greeter Falls, BCR, Stone Door

    about 1 year ago

    Hubby and I did this hike this morning. We started at the Greeter Falls trailhead. We did not go down to Greeter Falls but went to the left past Boardtree Falls instead and proceeded to the Alum Gap Campground. From there we took Big Creek Rim trail. There are four overlooks and several creek crossings along the way. It comes out at the Stone Door. We went down Stone Door and came back up and headed to the Stone Door trailhead. We stopped there for awhile and ate lunch. Then we took the Laurel Trail back to the Alum Gap Campground and went back down Greeter Trail to finish the hike. It was closer to 10 miles since we had to take Greeter Trail twice. All in all it was an easy hike with nice well marked trails. We had a map but didn't need it. Some parts are rocky or full of roots but there are no major hills to climb. We went in at 7am but didn't see many people until later in the morning. Laurel Trail was kind of boring with nothing to look at but trees but it was the most direct route back to the car. There is an out house at the Alum Gap Campground and nice restrooms at the Stone Door ranger station but not at the Greeter Falls parking area. We had a great time. Its the first time we have done a 10 mile hike and I think we picked the right trails for it.

    shannon vandergriff added WISH LIST

    about 1 year ago

    shannon vandergriff reviewed Rainbow Lake to Bee Branch and Signal Point Trail

    over 1 year ago

    Nice hike. Well maintained gravel path. The first half mile there was a lot of noise from chainsaws in a nearby neighborhood. We had more fun once we got to Bee Branch Trail. It is a traditional dirt trail and less traveled. The Rainbow Lake area was crowded even on a weekday. Overlooks were beautiful. It was a very nice area and the trails were well marked.

    shannon vandergriff reviewed Alum Cave Bluffs Trail

    over 1 year ago

    My favorite hike so far. It has it all. Rushing mountain stream, old hardwood forest, awesome views. We loved the log bridges and walking through the arched rock.

    shannon vandergriff reviewed Laurel Falls Trail

    over 1 year ago

    This hike was not like we are used to. Its all paved. We went on a weekday and it was very crowded. Its the first time in 30 years of going to the Smokies that I have ever seen a parking spot open right at the trailhead. We were actually headed to Elkmont to hike but changed our minds when we saw the empty slot. On the way to the falls it is mostly uphill but not steep. There are a few places with big dropoffs but no rails so keep an eye on kids. Laurel Falls is very pretty but there was a crowd so I couldn't get any pics without people in them. I'm glad we hiked it but I prefer unpaved trails and a little more privacy. But we knew how popular the trail was before we hiked it.

    shannon vandergriff completed Laurel Falls Trail

    over 1 year ago

    shannon vandergriff reviewed Savage Day Loop

    over 1 year ago

    Nice easy hike with well marked, well maintained trails. Hubby and I went on a weekday morning and had the trail all to ourselves. At the trailhead there is a ranger station with clean restrooms and a kiosk to get a map for $2. Dayhikers sign in and out at the kiosk, a safety precaution that I really like. The suspension bridges were fun. Got some great pics at the overlook. We went down a small trail that overlooks the falls but we couldn't see it very good through all the leaves. The waterfall was fairly easy to get down to on a wooden set of stairs. We went 2 days after a big rain so it was really running. Near the small loop headed to the falls had a few places with standing water but we got around without getting our feet wet. We spent about 30 minutes at the falls and headed back. Overall, it is a nice relaxing hike. Its great for some time in the woods without exerting yourself too much.

    shannon vandergriff completed Savage Day Loop

    over 1 year ago

    shannon vandergriff updated savage day loop

    over 1 year ago

    shannon vandergriff updated Laurel Falls

    over 1 year ago