Frozen Head State Park and Natural Area is situated in the beautiful Cumberland Mountains of eastern Tennessee. The 13,122 acres of relatively undisturbed forest contain some of the richest wildflowers areas in Tennessee. The mountainous terrain varies from an elevation of 1,340 feet to over 3,000 feet on 16 different mountain peaks. Frozen Head, elevation of 3,324, is one of the highest peaks in Tennessee west of the Great Smoky Mountains. From its observation tower on a clear day, one can plainly see the Cumberland Plateau, Tennessee Ridge and Valley, and the Great Smoky Mountains. In winter, the mountain peaks are often capped with snow or ice while the lower valleys remain unadorned, thus giving the park's namesake, Frozen Head. The park's lush vegetation, small streams, waterfalls and beautiful mountains make Frozen Head one of Tennessee's most scenic parks.
I would say this is the third most difficult trail at Frozen Head due to the elevation gained over a shorter distance than North Old Mac and South Old Mac. Once you get up to the Chimney Top Trail, a lot of nice rock features. Stayed at the Spicewood Branch Campsite which had water near by.
Great trail, even if you aren't in top fitness condition as I am not, I had no problem doing this trail. Granted at the end I certainly knew I had exerted energy but I was not sore the next day or anything like that. I would say this is an easy trail, one spot has a steep rise but it's short and easily done just might need to stop a few min to rest depending on how exerted you feel but the waterfall at the end makes it all worth it. Highly recommend this trail especially for families and schoolage children.
I don't know why this trail is rated moderate. It's very flat and wide. Probably one of the easiest trails in Frozen Head State Park! Always lots of family traffic on weekends. The falls are beautiful and a lot of families bring there younger kids to play there during the summer.
Started up chimney top trail. The final 1/4 mile to chimney tops is brutal. I hike difficult trails regularly and completely underestimated the ascent. I did enjoy the challenge along with the rest of the hike. I will definitely be coming back in winter when the lack of foliage will open up the views.
North Old Mac is definitely the easiest option to get to the observation tower from thr Old Mac parking area/visitor's center. Its a little bit longer than South Old Mac and not as scenic, but the grades up arent as severe as South Mac or Spicewood and more spread out over the length of the trail. The trail was also in better shape with fewer downed trees/obstacles than the other two as of May 2016. Definitely recommend taking it up to the tower, then going back down South Mac for a low-intensity day hike good for transitioning from beginner to intermediate hikes.