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Mount Cammerer via Low Gap Trail is a 11.9 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Cosby, Tennessee that features a river and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, horses, and backpacking and is accessible year-round. Horses are also able to use this trail.

Length 11.9 mi Elevation gain 3,169 ft Route type Out & Back

Backpacking

Camping

Hiking

Horseback riding

Forest

River

Views

Wild flowers

Wildlife

Blowdown

Rocky

Snow

No dogs

Description
Waypoints (0)
Getting There

NOTE: It has been reported that the parking lot is CLOSED and park is available on a nearby dirt road, which can add 5.2 to your hike. Please plan accordingly and check the park's website for up to date information. This route to Mt. Cammerer's summit begins from the Low Gap Trailhead in the Cosby Campground and it the most commonly hiked route to the top, perhaps because it is the shortest in length. In addition to being the shortest route to the summit, this hike is quite steep. You will begin your hike on the Low Gap Trail. This portion of the journey has a lot of elevation gain as you make your way up the Cosby Creek valley. When you reach the junction with the Appalachian Trail, turn left and enjoy a less steep potion of the ascent with views of Cosby Valley, Snake Den Ridge and Inadu Knob before reaching the turn off for the half mile spur trail to Mount Cammerer. Hike carefully along this rocky spur trail as you make your way to the fire tower, which provides 360 degree views of the Pigeon River Gorge, Snowbird Mountain, Mount Sterling, the Big Creek area, and the Smoky Mountains.

At the junction of 441 and 321 in Gatlinburg (Light 3), turn to travel eastbound on 321/73 and drive 18.2 miles until the road dead-ends into Hwy 32. Turn right here towards Cosby, and drive 1.2 miles to the Park entrance. Make a turn to the right into the Park, and drive another 3 miles to the Cosby Campground. The hike to the summit of Mount Cammerer begins from the Low Gap Trailhead, located at the back of the section B area of the campground.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (463)
Photos (812)
Recordings (325)
Completed (877)
Ron Sommer
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Jul 11 2020

Excellent hike. As others have said the hike starts with a steep 3 mile climb. Started out about 9am and a little muggy at first but cleared as we rose higher. Very comfortable hike, no bears today and great views at the lookout on top. Would certainly do again if we're in the area.

Marci Brien
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarThu Jul 09 2020
HikingRocky

Started out at 8:30 am knowing it was going g to be a long hike and hot day. First three miles to Low Gap nice water source to walk by and finally get to see the spring source beginnings. Saw wild Bergamot, Rosebay rhododendron in bloom. Steep switch backs until Gap. Bee balm in bloom at gap. Headed up from gap saw Turkscap lilies just about to bloom. Beautiful views from tower. Storm moved across I-40 towards Newport and just watched at cloud level. Take plenty of water. Finished up by 4:00.

Alya M.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarThu Jul 09 2020
Hiking

My favorite trail! Steady incline the first 4 miles and great views at the top. Lots of songbirds and vegetation along the way. So lovely! Saw about 20 people total the whole trip.

Luke Hillis
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMon Jul 06 2020
Hiking

Pretty tough trail but very rewarding. The first about 4 miles are straight up then it levels out on top of the ridge line. Unfortunately for me when i went it was totally clouded the entire day and visibility was like 25 foot in front at most. Through small breaks in the clouds the view from the tower was great. So be sure to check the weather before you go

Chris Haroun
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarTue Jun 30 2020
HikingMuddy

Good trail. I enjoyed it, but may be a disappointment for some people... there are not many features on the way up, and no real views until the top... which was completely socked in when I went up. Still amazing to see the restored old fire tower. There were only 15-20 people on the trial the entire up/down. I was hiking solo and came across a mama and her cubs, so call out hey bear if you’re alone. 4 or five trees down too, but not hard to get across.

View Chris's Recording
David Hicks
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Jun 30 2020
Hiking

June 30, 2020. Very humid! Lucky to have fit this hike in between periods of rain -- thunderstorms forecast for today and pretty much the entire week. Pretty much the first three miles to the Appalachian Trail intersection were extraordinarily steep -- a very long uphill grade that keeps fooling you into thinking you've finally made it to flat ground, only to laugh in your face as it throws you another incline. Definitely bring an extra shirt, as mine was completely soaked in the first three miles, and I got slightly chilled on the AT section from the breeze. Hypothermia can set in while mountain hiking, even on a warm summer day. Even my head was drenched, and I seldom sweat. Ran into a rather large boar bear standing on the trail in the last half mile before the tower, and also saw a bear with two cubs on the return hike right below the AT intersection. The cubs quickly climbed a tree on the trail, and the sow moved downhill away from the trail. We left the parking lot not long after dawn and were the first on the trail. We passed 21 hikers (different small groups) on the way back down the mountain. Definitely a must-do hike while in the area. Just come prepared with rain wear, a change of clothing, and plenty of water.

View David's Recording
Kelley Hicks
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Jun 30 2020
HikingMuddyRocky

June 30,2020. Be prepared to go for the first 3 miles straight up a steep hill. Its hard. Humid this morning 79 degrees . Saw a big black bear cross in front of us . Then coming back down the trail 2 baby cubs run up the tree beside us. The mom ran a little down the hill. This trail was a challenge.

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Antoine B.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Jun 22 2020
Hiking

Beautiful but strenuous trail with lush vegetation and flowers, and fantastic views at the tower. We took Low Gap to the AT, then headed to the tower. The first mile has great river and waterfalls. The trail is uphill for the 6 miles on the way to the tower. Be warned that miles 2 to 5 are particularly challenging. Like others recommend, start at dawn to avoid the heat and humidity. Deservedly rated hard trail which kicked our butts, yet very rewarding and the way down is easy.

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Amy Zimmerman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Jun 20 2020
HikingBlowdownBugs

As everyone else has said, the first 2.5-3 miles is an absolute grind. I’m a regular runner and hiker and this trail got me winded for sure. That said, it’s a great workout. And the views at the summit are breathtaking. I started at the low gap trailhead around 6:30am and had the summit to myself for about 30 min. Was worth the early start. There are a lot of bugs where low gap meets the AT and again at the summit. Bring repellent if the bugs bother you! Overall fantastic hike!

Taylor Scifo
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Jun 20 2020
HikingRocky

First part of the trail was definitely the most difficult and then it levels out the closer you get to the top. Worth it for epic views!!

View Taylor's Recording
Brian M.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri Jun 19 2020
HikingRocky

Parts of this hike have the prettiest trails I’ve seen in GSMNP. I did enjoy the hike once over, but the first 3 miles up Low Gap are a beast! Definitely strenuous, and a great workout all the way. Good hiking shoes/boots are a must as there are lots of rocks and large tree roots. I appreciated the extra ankle support of my boots on this one. If you have hiking poles, bring them. Plan on plenty of rest breaks unless your a very fit and active hiker. My Apple Watch showed the elevation gains at +22% as compared to Mt. LeConte via Alum Cave trail. Very light traffic on a Friday, I only met 9 people on my 6 hour journey.

View Brian's Recording
tj gibson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarThu Jun 18 2020
Hiking

Started this hike around 5:30am on 6/13/20. Luckily we were able to beat the sun and humidity out there, because the first 3 miles to the AT are nice and inclined. After the AT intersection, it slacks up considerably so I was able to conversate with my buddy again. Upon reaching the tower there were very few clouds in the sky and the views were incredible. Did not see any wildlife, and there were 3 large enough trees down as to where we had to shimmy over them.

Joe Cook
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Jun 14 2020
Hiking

Parking lot is open and trail is in great condition and well travelled. We only saw 5 other groups. Incredible 270 degree views at the lookout. The first 3 miles are quite tough but the 2.5 miles along the ridge are relatively flat and a relief. It took us 2.5 hours to get up and 2 to get down with a short break at the top. Bugs were only bad in a few short spots especially at the AT intersection w/ Lower Gap. Highly recommend

Laura Alford
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Jun 13 2020
HikingRockyScramble

Beautiful hike but as others have indicated, it is a VERY difficult first 3 miles so be prepared. View is definitely worth it at the top and the trail along the way is great as well.

View Laura's Recording
Bobbie Itrich
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarTue Jun 09 2020
Hiking

I was disappointed in this hike with it being in the top 10 of hikes to do in the gsmnp. That being said I believe this would be a awesome hike if I had done it after the trees were bare. I will be back in the winter to see if I like it better. To me I would do LeConte or Ramsey Cascades during spring summer or fall if you like views. This hike is hard the first 3 miles will be grueling the last 200 ft you will be doing some climbing of boulders.

Leigh Yates
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Jun 08 2020
Hiking

I did this this hike for the 6th time on 6/7/20. Very peaceful, heard the vireos as well as warblers on the way up. Catawba rhododendrons are in bloom about a mile up othe AT after completing low gap trail. Great views of the pigeon river, mount sterling, and my gyot from the firetower. By they way, Cosby Road is now open to the hiker parking area!

John Hynes
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarWed Jun 03 2020
Hiking

The first 2.5 miles are grueling uphill (for an out of shape 24 year old). Flattens our, views from around the tower are incredible and worth all of the pain.

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Jaclyn Nash
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat May 30 2020
HikingRocky

I am new to hiking, however, I am athletic so I knew I could do this, but have a challenge. It was definitely challenging. I recorded 12.2 miles at 7 hours 42 minutes with 6 hours and 23 minutes moving time. The view was definitely worth the steep trails. The lower gap trail was definitely more challenging than the Appalachian Trail. Overall I had a great time.

Matthew Birge
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri May 29 2020
HikingMuddy
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Andrew Alms
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue May 26 2020
Hiking

Wonderful hike starting in the valley and mixed multiple canopy forests up to grassier scrubby growth on the ridge and great views (sans clouds). The first 2.9 are steep, but there are plenty of rest points and now with the leaves in its pretty shady. We got a clear day for the first half and the views along with the little fire town was awesome. Birds, Butterflys, moss, snails, mushrooms - the whole lot. This is an A+ hike with well maintained trails.

Tomas Salazar
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarTue May 26 2020
Hiking

Cosby Road is back open again. 11.2 miles round trip from the hiker parking lot. great views today from the fire tower. once you get the AT you've pretty much done all the tough climbing

Kyle Deimler
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSat May 23 2020
Hiking

Cloudy at the top but it is the smokies. Overall great hike

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Josh Huntley
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat May 16 2020
HikingBugs

With Cosby Campground closed I had to park on a nearby dirt road to a cemetery that added 5.2 miles to the hike brought my total to 15.8 miles. It was a beautiful clear day with amazing views in every direction at the top.

Rachel Murray
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarTue May 12 2020
Hiking

One of the harder trails I’ve done! Did this in April of 2019. Very steep, but rewarding at the top. It was pretty icy still when we went.

Jacob Eskola
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Mar 21 2020
Hiking

Killer view from the tower! First 3.8 miles is mostly up hill via lower gap trail. Rest of it cruises you right to the tower. Tends to be windy. Plenty of room inside the tower for multiple people.

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Jayson Moorman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Mar 02 2020
HikingIcyMuddyRocky

What a great trail! It took us just over 3 hours up and just under 3 down and it was beautiful. A sunny day in March and we enjoyed every bit of it. Be sure to plan for a long trip with plenty of water and snacks. I loved the scenes on the trail as well as the view at the top. Very fun and would recommend to all!

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