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Appalachian Trail to Icewater Spring Shelter

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Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Appalachian Trail to Icewater Spring Shelter is a 6 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Gatlinburg, Tennessee that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, bird watching, and backpacking and is accessible year-round.

Length 6.0 mi Elevation gain 1,407 ft Route type Out & Back
Backpacking Camping Hiking Bird watching Forest Views Wild flowers Bugs Rocky No dogs
Waypoints (0)
Facilities

There is a restroom at Newfound Gap close to the trailhead.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (1033)
Photos (1987)
Recordings (1014)
Completed (2307)
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Chelsea Weinberg
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Hiking

Misty in the morning almost like a rainforest. Medium difficulty. Really nice

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Tyler Michael
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Hiking

Well maintained and easy to follow trail;. A really enjoyable hike that is moderately strenuous, but not an ass-kicker. Hime provides relaxing forest aesthetic and some sweeping views of the mountains.

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Logan Abbott
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Hiking

10/25/2020 Absolutely stunning! It was supposed to be cloudy all day today in Gatlinburg but by the time you get to the trail and are hiking, the weather moves past pretty quickly. We arrived at about 9am and made it to the bunion at about 11am. The views were GORGEOUS but it got very crowded maybe 10 min after we got there. If you can start around 8/8:30 you would probably miss the crowd! We found a small trail up the back of the bunion to that led to an outcropping of rock overlooking where everyone was taking pictures, and that’s where we had our lunch. You go up about 1100 feet of elevation within the first 2.5-4 miles of the hike, and the remaining 800 feet of elevation you get on the way back from the bunion. The climb wasn’t too strenuous for us (were in good shape and hike often) but it was too much for our friends, who had to turn around. The trail was watery and had you hiking through what was essentially a creek bed as you approach the bunion. It was a good mix of incline / flat dirt / scrambling over some rocks / roots. Overall if you’re in the Smoky Mountains for a challenge and some beautiful views, you HAVE to do this trail!

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Brooke Barber
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HikingRocky
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Aaron Libby
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Hiking
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Brittany Cusanelli
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Hiking

Amazing trail but very difficult. Mostly uphill for 2ish miles at the beginning, and again on the way back further towards Charlie’s Bunion.

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Cheryl Boyett
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Hiking

Really nice trail, lots of rocks. Little confusing at the top of the trail going to jump off trail. When you think your at the top you go to your right and keep going where there barely looks like a trail.

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East West Nutrition User
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Hiking

Epic view... absolutely worth the 4 miles!

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Matthew Silcox
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Hiking
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Charles Speelman
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Hiking
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Pearce Cowart
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Hiking

Solo hike, first time on this trail! I got a pretty late start (2-ish) but was emboldened by a recent review mentioning hiking in the dark. I must say, the sunset was perfect (the return trip faces west). This hike starts uphill and challenges right away, more abruptly than most trails I’ve hiked (Alum, Trillium, Ramsey, Porters Creek), they all save the intensity for later). The view was wonderful, but there’s something magical about that return in dusk (full dark by the time I hit the parking lot). That will be my takeaway!

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Angie Mills
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Hiking

Great hike! Well kept and marked. Expect first two miles to be straight up and grueling. Then the hike plateaus and goes down until you get to Charles Bunion. Coming back, the first mile or so is tough, but once you hit the downhill, it’s clear sailing from there! Fantastic views at the point!

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Zhihang Zhang
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Hiking
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Lorie Chambers
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Hiking
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Lori Saker
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Hiking

Monday hike began @ 8am with very few people on trail. beautiful day for a hike and only a handful of folks once we got to Charlies Bunion. leaves were not in full color and many had already fallen. Zoo atmosphere in parking lot once we returned at 3:30.

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Daniel Arndt
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Hiking
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Dan Bornman
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We loved this trail. We had our 11 year old and it was late afternoon so we only went to the shelter - 6.3 miles round trip. More crowded near the start but thinned out a couple miles in.

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David Stern
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HikingGreat!
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Joshua Boyd
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Hiking
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Destiny Fowler
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HikingGreat!

The trail was great! There were a few muddy spots. The best view of the whole hike is within the first .5 miles.

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Denny Lehman
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Hiking
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Sammie Neubauer
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Hiking
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Ariana Panagiotopoulos
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Hiking

The altitude is pretty difficult for the average hiker but the view is worth it!

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Tom Owens
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Hiking
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Sebastian Haupt
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Hiking
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Rene Hei
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Pankaj Dahad
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Doug Standifer
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Hiking
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Jowanna Standifer
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Hiking

Started the Appalachian Trail at Newfound Gap, went to Boulevard Trail, visited Icewater Spring Shelter, doubled back and hit the Jump off. Very rocky trails but well worth the views. Be prepared for windy and cold weather when you hit the top of the mountain.

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Bill Cantley
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Hiking
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