Explore the most popular hiking trails near Hunter with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

This trail isn’t as difficult as all of the reviews made it out to be, in my opinion. Yes, it’s straight up. But if you are used to actual hiking, then you will be fine. Bring your poles or a walking stick, they help a lot climbing the super steep areas and help you not slide coming back down. We hiked this trail in 60 degree weather, and stopped frequently to rest a minute. A faster pace and/or hot weather would make this hike more difficult. Small children would probably slide/fall coming back down the trail. The view is gorgeous!

hiking
3 months ago

The reviews are spot on. This is the steepest trail I have ever hiked. Bring your trekking poles. Still, it was totally worth it.

hiking
5 months ago

Reviews are spot on! Very intense hike! Starts off fairly flat for the first half but then it gets very steep! Lots of rocks and loose dirt so the climb down gets tricky as well. We explored further down the path until we met the Holston Mountain trail and then turned back. Legs were definitely shaking on the way down! Was able to accomplish this as my 3rd hike after many years off! The view at the top is breathtaking! Looking forward to doing it again in the fall when the leaves are changing! Definitely recommend this hike if you can handle a steep climb up and down! Just make sure you have plenty of water and take plenty of breaks!

hiking
5 months ago

Very strenuous hike! The first part of the hike is very deceiving and leads u to believe that its not gonna be that bad. After about 1/4 a mile it is absolutely straight up the mountain for the rest of the hike. There are lots of trees to lean on the way up. If u do make it to the top, you will see one of the neatest habitats around here and some of the most unique wildflowers. Its totally worth the effort!

Harder than I thought it would be. The trail is as steep as described and is definitely hard. The road to get there has more potholes than actual road so drive with caution. Worth the view!

hiking
5 months ago

This is as hard as the other reviews say but man were the views worth it. If you can do it, definitely go

hiking
5 months ago

Great Hike! I didn't want to believe the other reviews on the difficulty, but they are pretty accurate, pretty much an uphill climb the whole way. Worth it though to get to see the view at the top.

hiking
6 months ago

This was a very enjoyable (and a bit wet) challenge today. The joy was dampened by the condition of the trail more than by the rain.

I think this trail should be retired unless major work can be done (alas, I'm not in a good place to take on working on it, myself). It is a great space, but the trail is in bad shape. About 1/3 of the trail is erosion ruts, and I felt guilty in passing through making it worse (albeit a tiny bit).

On the lower sections, the mountain laurel has overgrown, requiring me to stoop for lots of these parts (I'm 6'00"). There are sections of the trail that apparently have disappeared, requiring frequent GPS checks to get back on track.There are no markings. I did place a pile of limbs at one junction off of the logging road, since there were misleading pieces of day-glow orange surveyor's tape nearby. Sometimes, getting back on track was to find the erosion ruts! There are multiple downed trees, including a very recent (Maple or Sweet Gum) tree top that fell directly on the trail. Several other large logs lie across the trail, but they are not as much an obstacle. I did see a bit of recent clearing work, as noted by Anthony, yet the amount of work done appears to have been less than the recent new debris further up the trail.

I also found what may have been long-abandoned trails and/or animal trails, but these usually dead-ended into underbrush. The logging roads were not routed in an ecologically responsible way, which is part of the reason for the erosion ruts. They are often very steep (did they use cables to pull vehicles up and down?) and there are no erosion control water diversion cut-outs. Several of the logging roads dead-end as well...

If I was a permanent resident of this area, and could get FS permission, I would likely try to get a group of folks together to do some trail maintenance. It would be great to develop a couple of loops of varying distance, to open this great area to more people. That would also help mitigate some of the damage already there by the bad existing trails and roads.

Flint Mill was awesome! Very short, but you will get a good workout in. I took lots of breaks. My legs were actually shaking on the way down because they were so tired. You get a great view at the top.

6 months ago

This is by far the hardest short hike I've ever done. It is more like a climb than a hike...the trail can be slippery and treacherous both up and back. The view of the lake is superb though...I rested on the rock and watched boats on the lake for who knows how long. If you're just going up for the view, there is not much point in continuing past the rocks...the trail is poorly maintained in spots and ends maybe 1/4 mile past the overlook at an intersection with other trails in the CNF.

hiking
7 months ago

This hike was intense! We have not been hiking in years and I decided to pick a hard hike  it kicked our butts! The view was gorgeous but we did not make it all the way to the top for the best views. We were pretty close but couldn’t push ourselves or one another to reach the top. What a great exercise!!

Top View of South Holston Lake

hiking
7 months ago

Re-hiked this trail today. The trail has been cleared somewhat on the lower sections (e.g. debris around the downed tree cleared). Peter's description is still apt. The trail is difficult to follow on the upper sections. Please do use a GPS. Still a useful and pleasant exit from this part of the mtn.

hiking
9 months ago

This trail is rated as hard and I would say that is pretty accurate, but not because it’s dangerous (it’s not). This is a short hike, but with a huge jump in elevation. Your legs will be burning when you get to the top. The view is well worth the effort. It was warm today but still a little snow on the mountains to make for a picturesque view. When driving Into the Cherokee National Forest watch for potholes and deep mud holes. The directions on this app will put you right at the trailhead which is easy to drive right by and not see it.

hiking
10 months ago

I just hiked ~half of the trail and back (3.5 miles). Good exercise. Some nice views and scenery but no major overlooks. Always nice just to be out in the woods. It was a steady uphill climb - nothing "flat" about Chestnut Flats.

10 months ago

Very steep hike, but worth it for the view.

This was a good trail to hike. I do agree it should be rated as hard. However, it is definetly worth the climb the views are incredible. It is definetly slick on the way down because of the leaves, but fun.

hiking
Saturday, December 16, 2017

Pleasant hike to ridge. Steady incline (approx 1400 ft.) One can reach many other trails using Holston West (Big Arm, Old Dug) or can hike Holston West to Holston High Point.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Incredible views, especially with a touch of snow. Be ready for some leg burn! Definitely more of a climb than a hike on the wet leaves.

Wednesday, November 08, 2017

Super steep!! Should be rated as hard.

hiking
Monday, October 23, 2017

this trail was super fun and super slippery on the way down, but sooo worth it! oh and bring lots of water we totally underestimated ourselves and ran out before we got to the top which sucked but everything went well regardless

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

This bad boy is definitely strenuous and can be dangerous due to the loose terrain and slope. But it's worth every bit of the hike

Sunday, October 15, 2017

This hike is extremely steep and difficult for the average hiker. Lots of steep terrain and lose rock. I highly recommend hiking poles. The views of S. Holston Lake are phenomenal and worth the effort!

Wednesday, October 04, 2017

Should be rated as 'Hard'. Very steep, and sometimes treacherous incline and decline. Be prepared to fall a few times because of rocks and loose dirt. The view is awesome though.

hiking
Thursday, September 28, 2017

Super steep and not at all a moderate trail. Could be very dangerous in wet conditions, so take caution even in dry conditions. The views are amazing.

hiking
Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Not for small children, or the elderly. I took my dog and he did fine but I wouldn’t take a small dog here. It’s not really a hike it’s more like climbing. The view is spectacular though!

Friday, September 22, 2017

More like a climb than a hike. Getting up there was straight up and hard. Coming down was dangerous and slippery. The view is totally worth it though.

Tuesday, September 05, 2017

It is a good trail,well marked and easy to follow. A moderate rating is misleading. It is short but quite steep. The view from Flint Rock is worth the lung busting climb. Wear good strong boots, bring plenty of water, consider hiking pole to help with footing. Mostly take your time and enjoy!

hiking
Sunday, August 27, 2017

I'd definitely do it again after a year of cardio. lol. The view is totally worth the very steep climb from the bottom to the top.

hiking
Thursday, July 20, 2017

Quite a view, but you're going to work your butt off to see it. The trail should be marked as hard for the steepness. Don't take the trail behind the overlook thinking it will take you back the same way... it doesn't. Trust me.

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