Ramsay Cascades Trail

HARD 235 reviews

Ramsay Cascades Trail is a 7.7 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Gatlinburg, Tennessee that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until November.

DISTANCE
7.7 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2171 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

birding

camping

fishing

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

bugs

muddy

old growth

rocky

closed

no dogs

This is a great hike with lots of good scenery. The trail is an out-and-back type trail with the route to Ramsey Cascades all up hill. It's a gradual climb that only gets remotely steep the last mile or so approaching the Cascades. The first 1.5 miles follow an abandoned logging route. The trail then becomes a typical Smoky Mountain hiking trail that is only wide enough for one person. The last mile or so becomes more steep and is also very rocky. Caution should be taken especially on the way back down. Once reaching the Cascades, you will want to cross over the shallow pool at the bottom to reach a rock ledge on the other side to get in position for some good pictures of the Cascades.

2 days ago

It was beautiful. Don't let the first Parr of the trail fool yuou, it does get a little more difficult as you make your way through. It's well worth the trip!!!

hiking
11 days ago

This was one of my favorite trials I’ve done and I’ve hiked all over the USA. My 60 yr old mother and I did this in the rain on an unusually 60 degree day in February, which made the river and falls both have fast and a lot of water. The first 1.5 miles is fairly easy as its pebbles but on an incline. The rest of the trail is rock and root heavy but worth it as you have the river roaring next to you the entire hike. The last 3/4 mile or so is all rocks uphill at a steep incline but the view at the end is worth it. We were both stripped down to T-shirt’s by the time we got to the top but it was much cooler by the falls. Please everybody do this hike. It took us roughly 5 hrs but we stopped and ate lunch and played in the falls and stopped frequent for photo opportunities as they are all over the hike.

hiking
11 days ago

This trail is by no mean easy but it is extremely beautiful and worth the struggle! Lots of rocks and roots on the trail which runs right along side the water pretty much the entire trip. The app says 7.7 miles but signs and my smartwatch clocked it at 9. Definitely a hike for the memory book!

hiking
12 days ago

WORTH IT!! Completed the hike in 4 hours. That was with us going at a decent pace and having lunch at the falls. You will cross a bunch of river/streams on you trail, so pack extra socks if your shoes aren’t water resistant! It’s defiantly a difficult hike that gains elevation pretty quickly, but with a few stops here and there to catch our breath, we did just fine!

hiking
16 days ago

Holy Crap. This one starts out beautiful and then kills you after you start the climb up to the falls. It is definitely a "hard" for that section. Rock and Root climbing. Some very steep. Be prepared.

hiking
25 days ago

We did this hike the last week of August and only came across about 8-10 other people on the trail. It took us about 7 hours to complete with two people, but this was only our second hike. Definitely pack snacks and an abundance of water for breaks. We also saw two bears very early on in the trail. I went off trail to take a picture of a small waterfall and nearly didn't see them eating in the water next to a rock. We backed away slowly and continued on and it was very much worth it. It is a very beautiful hike and it is very rewarding when you get to the top.

hiking
1 month ago

Icy, but not as bad as Mt. Le Conte. Some-type of hiking crampons are helpful, but I think you can still finish the hike without them. Be careful of the falls themselves... super icy and its not at all sturdy. Great hike though.

1 month ago

This was the most beautiful hike I have ever been on! It snowed the entire way up, was anywhere from 10-20 degrees, and absolutely stunning. The falls are breath taking, especially surrounded my snow. It took us 5.5 hours to complete the entire hike, and we stopped several time to take pictures and eat a snack. If you take this hike during the winter, expect to slip and fall on frozen tree roots and rocks. It’s still totally worth slipping to see the falls! The first 2 miles are very mild: wide trail with gradual incline. The second half is a pretty steep incline, you have to jump rocks to cross the river several times, and the closer you get to the falls, you’re climbing nothing but rock. I would not recommend small children attempting this hike.

1 month ago

1/9/18 Last half a mile was a killer but it was soooo worth it. The Falls were almost totally frozen which made it easy to trek out for a great photo op under the Falls 

hiking
1 month ago

What a ice sculpture. 1/4/18 temp was 5 degrees windy and snowing. The cascades was completely frozen no water to be seen only heard. The trail itself seemed to be fading in the snow covered trail and I kept forging ahead and sure glad i did. The trail starts as a old fire road for the first 2 miles. Then comes a sign showing 2.5 miles to Ramsey and wow did the terrain change and the closer you got the falls it got more challenging. Well worth the burnt calories.

hiking
1 month ago

Very nice hike. Starts easy then is definitely a climb with a lot of roots, steps and rocks. Trail was easy to follow and well-maintained. I went early (8am) to have some solitude. On my way back I passed a fair number of people. Falls were running but also had some ice. Very pretty. Trails only had a little ice, nothing to worry about. Took me about 4 1/2 hours, hustling pretty good.

hiking
2 months ago

Oh, how I love this hike! The last 1.5 miles will let you know what you are made of-rock challenge with an amazing pay off of gorgeous Cascades!

hiking
3 months ago

Absolutely amazing, a storm passed by two nights ago so some new trees down and snow passed the second half. Not only are the Falls beautiful but the hike along the way gives some outrageous clear views of the creek.

3 months ago

Awesome trail. The hike was strenuous but well worth it. The snow made everything really pretty and the falls were bigger than we expected. Pictures can’t do it justice.

3 months ago

Very strenuous, roots ; rocks. But well worth it at the end. Beautiful waterfall.
Be careful coming down, especially if it's rained. My fit bit registered 11 miles. Happy hiking. 

3 months ago

This is a very rewarding trail.

hiking
3 months ago

This is a tough trail, but worth the effort. The Cascade is absolutely beautiful! Get an early start so you can take your time and enjoy the scenery. Also so you can get a parking spot. It is a popular trail, and the parking lot fills up. It is posted as 4 miles to the Cascade, but my iPhone 7 gps registered it as 4.8 miles. Maybe I meandered a lot on the way up! ;-). I hiked 9.8 miles round trip - again, according to my phone gps. I see this a lot on GSMNP trails - even with my hand held Garmin GPS. The trails are often longer than posted.

hiking
3 months ago

Very steep climbing over tree roots and rocks the last
1 1/2 - 2 miles. Very pretty along the way. Seemed harder than Mt LeConte trail even though it was shorter.

hiking
4 months ago

Great hike, plenty of vistas! Found a great bouldering rock with decent hand holds

hiking
4 months ago

Amazing hike! But definitely need to be in great shape for this one. And take a lot more water than you think you'll need--my husband and I went through two 32 oz
Nalgene bottles and we easily could have drank a lot more! But a beautiful hike with an amazing waterfall at the top. Well worth all the rocky terrain ;)

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