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best easy hikes smoky mountains
Best Easy Day Hikes covers 22 hikes in the Smokies, including "Quiet Walkways," self-guided nature trails, and recommendations based on best views, nature lovers, history hikes, waterfalls, etc.




























smokies trails illustrated map
National Geographic Trails Illustrated Map for the Smoky Mountains



































day and overnight hikes smoky mountains
Day and Overnight Hikes: Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Includes 13 day loops, 10 overnight loop hikes and recommendations based on solitude, winter, easiest, wildlife and most scenic hikes.






Directory of Hiking Trails in the Smokies by Difficulty Rating

Hiking in the Smokies can be quite challenging, and hiking any trail above your fitness level can make for a less than enjoyable day while out on the trail. Below is a list of trails based on a difficulty rating, and ranked from easiest to hardest hikes. This list is intended to help hikers find a trail that's best suited towards their abilities. By clicking on any trail name you'll find more detailed information, including trail descriptions, directions, key features, photographs, elevation profiles and maps.

Difficulty Rating Defined: a difficulty rating of less than 5 is generally considered to be an easy hike. Between 5 and 10 is moderate, and anything over 10 is considered to be strenuous. Please click here for a more detailed explanation of difficulty ratings while hiking in the Smokies.

R/T on the table heading below stands for total round trip mileage.

To get a general idea on the location of any trail, please check out our park map page.


Trail Location Trail Features  R/T Miles Elevation Gain Difficulty Rating
Spruce-Fir Trail Newfound Gap / Clingmans Dome Spruce-Fir Forest 0.4 25 0.40
Toms Branch Falls Cherokee / Deep Creek Waterfalls 0.6 47 0.69
Juney Whank Falls Cherokee / Deep Creek Waterfalls 0.5 194 0.89
Indian Creek Falls Cherokee / Deep Creek Waterfalls 1.9 150 2.20
Laurel Falls Elkmont Waterfalls 2.3 314 2.93
Oconaluftee River Trail Cherokee / Deep Creek Historical / Stream 3.0 70 3.14
Little Brier Gap Elkmont Walker Sisters Place 2.6 285 3.17
Grotto Falls Gatlinburg / Mt. LeConte Waterfalls 2.6 585 3.77
Goldmine Loop Cherokee / Deep Creek Lake Views / Historical 3.1 460 4.02
Schoolhouse Gap Cades Cove / Townsend Quiet Forest Hike / Wildflowers 3.8 513 4.83
Baskins Creek Falls Gatlinburg / Mt. LeConte Waterfalls 3.0 953 4.91
Big Creek / Mouse Creek Falls Big Creek Waterfalls 4.0 580 5.16
Flat Creek Falls  Balsam Mountain Waterfalls 4.0 600 5.20
Andrews Bald Newfound Gap / Clingmans Dome Panoramic Views 3.5 899 5.30
Porters Creek Trail Greenbrier / Cosby Waterfalls / Stream / Flowers / Historical / Old Growth Forest 4.0 699 5.40
Abrams Falls Cades Cove / Townsend Waterfalls 5.0 340 5.68
Little River Trail Elkmont Stream / Wildflowers / Historical 4.9 412 5.72
Deep Creek Loop Cherokee / Deep Creek Waterfalls / Wildflowers 4.6 579 5.76
Meigs Mountain Trail Elkmont Quiet Forest Hike 4.6 661 5.92
Mingus Creek Cherokee / Deep Creek Historical 4.5 748 6.00
Kephart Prong Trail Cherokee / Deep Creek Stream / Historical 4.2 955 6.11
Hen Wallow Falls Greenbrier / Cosby Waterfalls 4.4 900 6.20
Rough Fork Trail Balsam Mountain Quiet Forest Hike 5.2 600 6.40
Alum Cave Gatlinburg / Mt. LeConte Views / Interesting Geological Features 4.4 1125 6.65
Huskey Gap (Newfound Gap Rd) Gatlinburg / Mt. LeConte Quiet Forest Hike 4.2 1240 6.68
Chimney Tops Gatlinburg / Mt. LeConte Panoramic Views 4.0 1350 6.70
Kanati Fork Trail Cherokee / Deep Creek Wildflowers 4.0 1495 6.99
Cucumber Gap Loop Elkmont Stream / Wildflowers / Historical 5.6 830 7.26
Grapeyard Ridge Trail (Greenbrier) Greenbrier / Cosby Historical / Injun Creek steam engine wreck 5.8 980 7.76
Deep Creek Headwaters Newfound Gap / Clingmans Dome Stream 5.0 1480 7.96
West Prong Trail Cades Cove / Townsend Quiet Forest Hike / Stream 5.4 1375 8.15
Curry Mountain Trail Elkmont Quiet Forest Hike 6.4 1164 8.73
Rainbow Falls Gatlinburg / Mt. LeConte Waterfalls 5.4 1685 8.77
Sugarland Mtn Trail (lower) Elkmont Quiet Forest Hike 6.0 1500 9.00
Jump Off, The Newfound Gap / Clingmans Dome Panoramic Views 6.5 1275 9.05
Bullhead Trail Gatlinburg / Mt. LeConte Views / Interesting Geological Features 5.9 1607 9.11
Sugarland Mtn Trail (upper) Newfound Gap / Clingmans Dome Solitude / Views 7.0 1090 9.18
Twentymile Loop Fontana Village Stream 7.5 900 9.30
Smokemont Loop Cherokee / Deep Creek Stream / Wildflowers / Forest 6.5 1441 9.38
Balsam High Point Balsam Mountain Views 7.0 1217 9.43
Boogerman Loop Cataloochee Historical / Streams /  / Old Growth Forest 7.4 1040 9.48
Mt. Sterling (Mt. Sterling Gap) Big Creek Panoramic Views 5.6 2000 9.60
Meigs Creek Trail Elkmont Quiet Forest Hike 7.0 1380 9.76
Albright Grove Greenbrier / Cosby Old Growth Forest / Wildflowers/ Historical 7.0 1500 10.00
Brushy Mountain (Trillium Gap) Gatlinburg / Mt. LeConte Views / Wildflowers / Falls 6.8 1745 10.29
Noland Divide Newfound Gap / Clingmans Dome Views / Forest Diversity 7.2 1679 10.56
Middle Prong Trail Cades Cove / Townsend Waterfalls / History 8.3 1140 10.58
Fork Ridge Trail Newfound Gap / Clingmans Dome Old Growth Spruce-Fir Forest / Wildflowers 8.0 1500 11.00
Lumber Ridge Trail Cades Cove / Townsend Quiet Forest Hike / Solitude 8.1 1524 11.15
Shuckstack Fire Tower Fontana Village Views / Wildflowers 7.0 2120 11.24
Cove Mountain Elkmont Waterfalls / Old Growth Forest 7.7 1776 11.25
Lonesome Pine Overlook Cherokee / Deep Creek Views 6.7 2300 11.30
Charlies Bunion Newfound Gap / Clingmans Dome Panoramic Views 8.1 1640 11.38
Chestnut Top Cades Cove / Townsend Views / Wildflowers 8.6 1486 11.57
Ace Gap Cades Cove / Townsend Quiet Forest / Wildflowers 11.0 400 11.80
Rich Mountain Loop Cades Cove / Townsend Views / Wildflowers / Historical 8.5 1736 11.97
Old Settlers Trail (Maddron Bald) Greenbrier / Cosby Historical / Tyson McCarter Barn 8.8 1650 12.10
Huskey Gap (Little River Trail) Elkmont Stream / Wildflowers / Historical 10.0 1080 12.16
Cataloochee Divide Cataloochee Views / Historic / Wildflowers 10.0 1250 12.50
Ramsey Cascades Greenbrier / Cosby Waterfalls / Old Growth Forest 8.0 2375 12.75
Big Fork Ridge Loop Cataloochee Old Growth Forest / Historical 9.3 1800 12.90
Gregory Bald (Parson Branch) Cades Cove / Townsend Panoramic Views / Flame Azaleas / Old Growth Forest 8.8 2300 13.40
Silers Bald Newfound Gap / Clingmans Dome Panoramic Views 9.3 2152 13.60
Chasteen Creek Cherokee / Deep Creek Stream / Waterfalls 10.0 2499 15.00
Newton Bald Cherokee / Deep Creek Quiet Forest Hike / Views 10.0 2800 15.60
Spence Field (via Lead Cove) Cades Cove / Townsend Panoramic Views / Mtn Laurel 9.4 3100 15.60
Spence Field (Anthony Creek) Cades Cove / Townsend Panoramic Views / Mtn Laurel 10.3 2842 15.98
Mt. LeConte (via Alum Cave) Gatlinburg / Mt. LeConte Panoramic Views / Geological 11.0 2763 16.53
Mt. Cammerer Greenbrier / Cosby Panoramic Views / Historical 12.0 2470 16.94
Gregory Bald (Gregory Ridge) Cades Cove / Townsend Panoramic Views / Flame Azaleas / Old Growth Forest 11.3 3020 17.34
Brushy Mountain (Greenbrier) Greenbrier / Cosby Views 11.7 3000 17.70
Hemphill Bald Loop Balsam Mountain Panoramic Views / Old Growth Forest 13.7 2170 18.04
Spence / Russell Field Loop Cades Cove / Townsend Panoramic Views / Mtn Laurel 13.3 3050 19.40
Mt. Sterling (via Baxter Creek) Big Creek Panoramic Views / Old Growth Forest 12.2 4200 20.60
Mt. LeConte (via Trillium Gap) Gatlinburg / Mt. LeConte Panoramic Views / Waterfalls 13.9 3401 20.70
Rocky Top / Thunderhead Cades Cove / Townsend Panoramic Views / Mtn Laurel 13.9 3665 21.23
Mt. LeConte (Boulevard Trail) Newfound Gap / Clingmans Dome Panoramic Views / Old Growth Forest 15.6 3000 21.60
Mt. LeConte (Rainbow Falls) Gatlinburg / Mt. LeConte Panoramic Views / Waterfalls 13.8 3993 21.79
Mt. LeConte (via Bullhead) Gatlinburg / Mt. LeConte Panoramic Views 14.4 3993 22.39
Benton MacKaye Trail Great Smoky Mountains Long Distance Hiking n/a n/a n/a
Mountains-to-Sea Trail Great Smoky Mountains Long Distance Hiking n/a n/a n/a
Appalachian Trail Great Smoky Mountains Long Distance Hiking n/a n/a n/a