Smokemont Nature Trail

Great Smoky Mountains National Park, North Carolina
Elevation Gain23ft
Trailhead Elevation2,212ft
Elevation Min/Max2206/2220ft
Elevation Start/End2212/2212ft

Smokemont Nature Trail

Smokemont Nature Trail is a hiking trail in Swain County, North Carolina. It is within Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It is 0.6 miles long and begins at 2,212 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 0.1 miles with a total elevation gain of 23 feet.

Smokemont Nature Trail Trip Reports

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Raleigh, NC
Pathfinder | 130 pts
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My wife and I spent our 25th anniversary(12/19/06)on the Smokemont Loop. Started with beautiful rushing Bradley Fork, took a left over a cool log bridge and up a strenuous 2 miles to a saddle in Richland Mountain with spectacular views. The trail crosses the ridge so there were great views of Clingman's Dome,Thomas Ridge and the mountains that separate NC and Tennessee along parts of the trail, and the vista that includes Hughes Ridge and the valleys and mountains to the SE on other parts of the trail.

I am told that this is a heavily used trail in season, but being December we saw nary a soul, and the lack of foliage (except for luxuriant copses of rhododendron)was a definite plus. On parts of the trail, however, you can hear the traffic going up and down the blue ridge pway.

We had originally planned on hiking Heintooga Bald, but the road was closed. We then drove to the border in order to hike the AT to the ice shelter, but not only was the trail socked in, it was covered with screaming teens. Back down the mountain to Smokemont, and it turned out to be everything that we were looking for. What a blessing to see God's creation spreading out before us during part of the hike, and sitting on a boulder and watching it rush by during another.

Smokemont Nature Trail Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

Kevin Adams
"For people staying at Smokemont Campground, this loop hike is a good way to spend part of the day.Parking is at one of the 3 general-purpose parking areas at Smokemont Campground. The parking area at the trailhead for Bradley Fork Trail can fill up quickly on weekends and during the busy season. The campground has restroom facilities. Begin on Bradley Fork Trail, which starts at the gate on the north end of the campground. Bradley Fork Trail follows an old road that closely runs alongside Bradley Fork for much of the route. It is an easy and popular walk, lined with wildflowers in early spring. At 1.2 miles Chasteen Creek Trail forks to the right. Stay to the left and continue following Bradley Fork upstream." Read more
"This classic dayhike starts at Smokemont Campground. Enjoy riparian woodland, wildflowers, and pioneer homesites along Bradley Fork. Climb into dry ridgetop terrain on Richland Mountain, with partial views and vivid fall colors. Fall hikers can enjoy the variety of tree species along moist Bradley Fork and yet more species on Richland Mountain. The tree variety adds up to a cornucopia of autumn color. Spring reveals wildflowers along Bradley Fork and views from Richland Mountain before the trees leaf out." Read more

Trail Information

Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Nearby City
Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Hiking, Camping, Horseback Riding
Additional Use
Wild Flowers
Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Local Contacts
Smokemont USGS quad; Trails Illustrated #229 Great Smoky Mountains; Trails Illustrated #317 Clingmans Dome Cataloochee
Local Maps

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