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Gregory Ridge Trail to Gregory Bald is a 11.6 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Townsend, Tennessee that features beautiful wild flowers and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, camping, horses, and backpacking and is accessible year-round. Horses are also able to use this trail.

Length 11.6 mi Elevation gain 3,359 ft Route type Out & Back

Backpacking

Camping

Hiking

Horseback riding

Running

Forest

Views

Wild flowers

Wildlife

No dogs

Waypoints (0)
Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (190)
Photos (277)
Recordings (143)
Completed (387)
Alexander Riggs
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Hiking
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Summer Kinser
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Beautiful 360 views!

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Rebecca P.
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Hiking

This is one of the most spectacular views in the mountains. Get over any whining about the climb ;). It’s SOOOO WORTH IT!

Brian Roskamp
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Hiking

Would recommend bringing water instead of just beer!

Christie Amburn
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HikingMuddyRocky

You need some endurance to complete this trail. It’s a tough, uphill climb for almost the entire trip in. We made it up in. 2.5 hours, but we probably should’ve slowed down and taken more breaks. The top is gorgeous right now (July 2). The azalea blooms are completely full and beautiful, but I didn’t see the variety of color I had hoped for. A large buck wandered around within feet while we ate our lunch. The blueberry bushes are getting full and will offer another reason to visit later. We saw a lot of wildlife along the way (otters, deer, bear), but most of the trail itself has little of interest. You can hear the water, but you have little view of it. The return trip was rough on knees and tired legs.

Friederike B.
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Hiking

It was a tough hike, but extremely rewarding: such beautiful azaleas and such a beautiful view of the Smokies from the top. Not many hikes in the Smokies feature such a great view of the surroundings. The drive through Cades Cove is of course a bit annoying if there is a lot of traffic. The gates open at 8 a.m.; next time I would make sure I am at the gate at 8 so that the drive to the trail head is faster. Bring at least 3 liters of water per person. For the return trip, consider bringing poles if you tend to have trouble with your knees.

Daniel Worley
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HikingBlowdownMuddy
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Daniel Worley
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HikingBlowdownMuddy
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Wess Sharp
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HikingMuddy
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Kyle W.
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HikingMuddyRocky
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Brannan Croft
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HikingMuddy

I struggled on this hike more than most. It’s pretty tough. But don’t quit, you will be rewarded with one of the best views in GSMNP and beautiful azaleas. The blueberry bushes are up there in abundance and should make hiking up there worth it even after the azalea blooms have gone. Take at least 3 liters of water and something to replace electrolytes. It was hot and humid.

View Brannan's Recording
Alyx Barnett
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Hiking

The hike was gorgeous, the azaleas heavenly, 11 miles, 3000 feet climbing all on the way up. 1 star for the 6 hours of traffic from inconsiderate tourists who would stop in the middle of a one lane road repeatedly literally making 7 miles of driving take over 6 hours. Access this by bike only.

Kristina Byrd
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Hiking

The flame Azaleas were beautiful!! It’s well worth the hike but definitely a tough one. The azaleas were not quite at peak...maybe another 4 days or so. Great day!!

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Julie Aleph
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Hiking

The trail was tough but not extremely so, however the views at the top were not so amazing and the trail a little boring- nice woods, but more and more of the same. If you have one day to climb go up mt Camerrer, better views, or Le Conte, nicer trail.

Matt Dymidowski
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Hiking

Love love love this hike the steady elevation gain can be difficult at time but well worth the effort once you make the top. I would give this a 5 star if it wasn’t for the fact that you have to go through the cafes cove loop to get there LOL

Sean Gohlke
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Hiking

The top is a grassy field with a gorgeous view of the surrounding area, quite the steady incline to get there, but worth it. Along the trail there were a couple tree gaps that served as nice overlooks. There was a large tree downed on the path about 3 miles in and they've recently done some serious trimming that proved to be quite the annoyance the first 2 miles. Overall an excellent hike.

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Brittany Mikels
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Hiking

Highly recommend this hike! It was strenuous at times with a pretty good constant climb up but the view at the top makes it all worth it. The azaleas were in bloom too, which added to the breathtaking view. Access the trail via Cades Cove loop. Around mile 2 there is a nice spot to rest, and it is also a common camp site. At mile 5 you’ll reach a fork in the road and trail sign leading you to the AT (left) or top of Gregory Bald (right). Another .6 miles or so and you’ll reach the summit.

Beth Dirmeyer
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Hiking

This trail was challenging but well worth the experience! I love to push myself and this hike was perfect.

Jake Thornton
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Hiking

This is a lengthy trail, but the elevation gain is not difficult. Trails offers everything from thick lush vegetation to streams to the bald at the summit of course. People complained previously on here about the road to the trailhead and I am not sure why. You will leave the cades cove loop and take a well maintained and scenic gravel road to the trailhead. You do not have to make any turns just drive to the end. Go mid June and catch the flame azaleas and enjoy the 360 degree views. Saw turkey, a small bear, and several harmless snakes along the way

Adam McGlothlin
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Hiking

great hike. didn't seem as strenuous as Alum cave to leconte or Ramsay's Cascades trail. it's more elevation gain then both those trail's but it's a steady climb. One of those you never have to stop on if you pace yourself. I think for the people that consider it tougher it's because everything looks the same until the top. almost feels like you're on a treadmill at times.

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Jeremiah Coram
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HikingRocky

This one tests your will to reach the top. A number of downed trees over the trail but not impassable, for most folks.

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Laura Nevado
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Hiking

Compared to other hikes in the smokies, I feel that this one falls short, especially considering how much of a pain it was to access and the alternatives with similar level of efforts. Be aware that the last portion of the drive is a single lane scenic loop where people drive ridiculously slow in the hopes of seeing wildlife. It drove us nuts. It took us an hour to complete the last few miles because of it. No signs or bears or snakes. Saw a total of about 12 people during our hike. It was chilly at the bald. The azaleas seem to be a week or two away from blooming - maybe that would have made the hike more special but without them it was a little meh.

Renee Mikorski
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HikingMuddy

Amazing every time! Beautiful walk through the woods and the views are stunning at the top.

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Edd Mabe
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HikingBlowdownBugsMuddyOver grownRockyWashed out

April 27, 2019 starting temp 39 ending temp 72. Started out clear ended partly cloudy spitting rain. Started at trail head of GB off Cades Cove loop down the closed Parsons’s road to Little Gregory to Gregory Bald to Gregory ridge to my starting point 13.6 mile loop. I made a day of it. 8 hours. First 8 miles was peaceful and no humans. Arrived at the Bald and was welcomed by 3 nice ladies horseback riding. Beautiful horses they had. There was 10 or so hikers napping on the Bald. What a spectacular 360 view. Worth the 8 mile incline up. The 6 miles down was steep. Camp sites were busy but no one walking trail. Pack a big lunch and take the hike. Excellent exercise trail. You will burn 2500-3000 cal doing the loop. No bears but there was tons of evidence fresh. Did see a turkey all fanned out. Lots of bugs and bees. Giant wood peckers. Next time doing just the closed road 16 miles out and back. Only did 3.5 of it today. Only negative was fighting the Cades Cove Motor Trail folks looking every blade of grass. Admittedly I did see 5 bears driving out. Great day!

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