Grotto Falls Trail

MODERATE 670 reviews

Grotto Falls Trail is a 2.6 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Twin Creeks, Tennessee that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, birding, and horses and is best used from April until November. Horses are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
2.6 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
534 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

kid friendly

birding

hiking

horseback riding

nature trips

walking

forest

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

muddy

over grown

rocky

washed out

no dogs

An easy to moderate hike that is popular with families. The highlight is Grotto Falls, under which the trail continues. Accessed via the Trillium Gap Trailhead, this is a cool, well-shaded hike with gentle elevation gains. The only difficulties are numerous rocks and roots that just require you to watch your step.

hiking
3 hours ago

Great hike. Had a full family of all ages. Our 3 year old didn't complain about being tired on the hike. It was easy enough for him. Not a large elevation gain. Very beautiful throughout the hike with all of the rocks and roots along the trail which does make it a little tough to maneuver. Not paved. The waterfall is so pretty!!

hiking
1 day ago

A pretty easy hike and the waterfall is beautiful. You can walk behind the falls. Even though it’s a short, easy hike, I would recommend take no water.

hiking
1 day ago

I would not rate this as moderate, it is very easy- the trail was filled with families with small children. I am 26 and moderately in shape. Beautiful forest trail, heard lots of birds. I would definitely recommend exploring the base of the waterfall, as the top portion was crowded with so many people it felt like Disney World. If you can climb down, the base is very peaceful.

3 days ago

Go early! We arrived at 8am. Crowds were coming in on the way back.

4 days ago

We got there around 8:30am on a Sat. The trail was not super busy and we even had some time to ourselves at the fall. We enjoyed every part of this hike. It was not too strenuous, interesting things to explore and awesome waterfall to walk behind. When we left, the crowds were coming in.

hiking
7 days ago

Great hike. Went on 7/10. We arrived at the falls around 9:00. By the time we left at 9:30, there was a line of 50 or more people trying to reach the falls. There were lots of folks walking up as we walked down. Go early and bring a towel. The pool at the base is great to wade through.

hiking
10 days ago

Great moderate hike. Lots of tree roots on trail. Falls are beautiful. Highly recommend! I also would really advise going early. I started around 6:45AM. Coming down approximately 80 people were headed up to falls. (Kept count as a game :) )

13 days ago

lots of roots, rocks, and a couple small stream crossings keep you on your toes, but overall a relatively easy hike. the falls are amazing, but best to do this trail later in the day or in the off season as it tends to get quite congested.

hiking
18 days ago

Started the hike at roaring fork motor nature trail, parked at grotto falls parking lot. Arrived very early(7 am) to avoid bugs, long lines of people and to be able to get a parking spot. We walked on the trillium gap trail to the end of the brushy mountain trail. Total milage, around 7. The falls are very busy and you have to cross the water on rocks to continue on to the junction of brushy trail or to continue on to MT Le conte.
After the falls continue on the trillium trail to a junction with the Brushy mountain, it is walking on a dry creek bed, very narrow. The trees and plants create a tunnel as you walk, so a few Hey Bears are in order. At the top you can see a pretty great view of the surrounding area and the shrubs were blooming while we were there. You will never be in a big open area at the top just small openings to peak over the bushes at the scenary. I enjoyed the hike and I recommend it as an add on to the grotto falls hike.
On the way back we encountered about a million people at the falls and on the trail after the falls.

hiking
24 days ago

Wonderful Hike with a rather steady incline but well worth it when you see the beautiful waterfall.

hiking
25 days ago

This trail seems more moderate than easy. Still, it’s crowded with families and people of all ages. I guess because it’s a short trail, most people can do it. We all really enjoyed it.

hiking
25 days ago

Tougher than expected and was hard on young children. Time at the falls was fun and refreshing though.

hiking
28 days ago

Great trail for families. The trail is rocky in parts and covered in tree roots in others, so I definitely recommend a good pair of shoes. Also recommend going early, parking is very limited and people around up parking along the sides of the road a good distance from the trailhead.

1 month ago

Easy and very shaded hike. Great for a summer day with family of all ages. Awesome to go behind the waterfall and kids loved spotted salamanders.

1 month ago

Great waterfall! My wife enjoyed this easy hike and the waterfall.

hiking
1 month ago

This was my Family's first hike together. I was a great one to start with. The trail was not to rough or steep for us first timers. Had beautiful little waterfalls every couple once in awhile. The waterfall at the end of the first part of the trail was gorgeous. Can't wait to do the complete trail next time.

hiking
1 month ago

The trail was crowded to the point that there was a line to even look at the waterfall, and this was at 9am on a Thursday. Very little parking. Be aware that there are often snakes in the trees. Not the best hike for the little ones as many families were struggling to make it with their kids. The waterfall was amazing but not worth the crowds. More of a moderate than easy hike with the rocks, roots, and stream crossings.

1 month ago

Great short hike. Waterfall was cool. 1.5 hours round trip.

1 month ago

Beautiful but heavily trafficked.

hiking
1 month ago

We increased our adventure level with getting to hike down the trail in a thunderstorm today but it was truly a beautiful hike! Our group would classify it as a moderate hike due to the incline and all of the rocks and roots you got to climb over and I believe 3 small streams you had to cross. The parking is crazy and we got to pre-hike our hike with a 0.5 mile uphill climb to the trailhead. We had 2 people in their late 60’s, an almost 4-year-old, and a 32-week pregnant woman who all made the trek without any issues. Definitely wear the appropriate footwear and with mountain weather, I was thankful for my waterproof raincoat to protect the backpack of stuff we had! Oh! And go to the bathroom prior to the one-way road otherwise you will get to be even closer with nature to take care of business!

hiking
1 month ago

This is not an easy trail, it’s more of a moderate trail. The trail conditions the entire way consist of exposed roots and rocks, you must look at the ground for every step you take. There are a few stream crossings where you must step from rock to rock. In addition it’s really busy. At the falls there are slippery and uneven rocks. Use common sense and wear appropriate shoe gear.

1 month ago

Not exactly what I would classify as an easy trail for everyone. We brought my 72 year old mother in-law and my 4 year old son. My mother in-law completed it, but it was a struggle. Our 4 year old did well, but needed assistance in several areas. It gets more difficult near the waterfall with more rocks and roots. It’s not difficult in the sense that there are steep inclines or anything, but there are lots roots and rocks, which can be pretty significant tripping hazards for those that aren’t steady walkers. The trails is also crowded, but still beautiful. Overall, the trail is nice and there is a beautiful reward at the end.

hiking
1 month ago

June 2018. From Gatlinburg we followed a one way road to the trailhead. Today was very crowded and very difficult to find a parking spot. We actually had to walk about 0.3 miles from our car to the trailhead (uphill). The trail is well traveled. Rocky at times and lots of tree roots on the trail. We crossed a couple of very small streams. The trail is a steady climb to the waterfall. Be sure to follow the trail behind the waterfall and get a picture!

hiking
1 month ago

Go early. Parking is limited and the trail gets busy. The trail is part way up a one way road. Along the way you find some old homesteads, more pull offs and views and if youre lucky, black bear (I saw five). You can walk behind the waterfall but again if it's later in the morning or day, it's going to be busy. Limits your photo ops and peaceful serenity haha.

hiking
1 month ago

We really enjoyed this hike, especially the kids. They did it without much trouble and even the four-year-old walked the whole way without complaint. The only downside was all the people as it was really crowded the day we hiked it but the waterfall was still more than worth it!

hiking
1 month ago

Easy awesome hike. Beautiful scenery and inviting sounds of the stream and falls as you hike up a gentle incline. There are a few water crossings, nothing too deep or crazy just a heads up, you might get your feet a little wet. But that’s what being outside on an adventure should be!

hiking
1 month ago

awesome hike

hiking
1 month ago

This short trail off the Roaring Fork Driving Loop is a great chance to get out and stretch your legs.  A pretty easy, covered hike takes you to a small waterfall.  The best part is you can actually get behind the falls and walk back there for a nice picture.  Maybe about 1.5hrs to hike it.

Great hike to be a beautiful waterfall that you can actually walk behind. Spectacular photo ops! Peaceful views along the way as well with variation in footing and grade, although the initial leg is a pretty steady climb up, but not too taxing. I’ve done this hike two years in a row on vacation and will definitely return. I would recommend going early to avoid the crowds and because parking is limited.

1 month ago

Loved it! The rain made this a little more slippery than usual, but the payoff at the end was worth it! Our 6 yo and 10 yo made it without problems!

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