If you plan on being in the area during winter, you probably want to spend some time outside. It might be snowing, or it might be sunny, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy getting out in the national park and exploring! Here are 4 of the best Smoky Mountain hikes to go on this winter:
1. Alum Cave
One of the best Smoky Mountain hikes to go on in the winter is Alum Cave. This trail is considered moderate with a 4.6-mile roundtrip length if you just go to the bluffs. If you continue past the bluffs, you’ll be headed to the summit of Mount LeConte. This trail has beautiful wooded views all the way up, and between the trees, you might see some mountain views. One of the first features you’ll come across is Arch Rock, a huge formation along the trail. There are several stone staircases you’ll walk on, too. Once you reach Alum Cave, you’ll be blown away by the sheer size of the bluffs. Plus, there might be large icicles in the area, so be careful.
2. Andrews Bald
Andrews Bald is another moderate hiking trail you’ll want to explore in the winter. The trail is 3.6 miles roundtrip. You’ll hike through the woods and see beautiful views all along your hike. You might see small wildlife, such as birds and squirrels as you hike. Then, you’ll finally reach the bald. A bald is a meadow on the top of a mountain, and back in the day, farmers used these areas to feed their livestock. If there is snow on the mountains, you’ll have an incredible view of the snowy mountains while you’re at Andrews Bald.
3. Porters Creek
Porters Creek is a great trail to hike in the winter. Since it is at a lower elevation than some of the other trails on this list, the roads to get to the trailhead are less likely to be closed. Plus, Fern Branch Falls might be frozen during this time of the year, which is a beautiful sight. This trail is about 7 miles roundtrip, and it is considered moderate. You’ll get to hike through the woods, and there are old historic buildings along the trail you can explore. Plus, you might see wildlife along your hike.
4. Middle Prong
Middle Prong Trail is another one of the best Smoky Mountain hikes to go on in the winter. This trail is about 8 miles roundtrip and is considered difficult. This trail is near Townsend, Tennessee, a less trafficked area of the Smokies. While you hike this trail in the winter, you will see beautiful wooded views. In the first mile, you’ll come across Lower Lynn Camp Falls and Lynn Camp Falls. About 2 miles in, you’ll see an old rusted Cadillac right off the trail. Then, there are old home remains as you continue down the trail. At the end of the trail, you’ll see Indian Flats Falls, which is incredible to see in the winter.
These are just some of the best Smoky Mountain hikes to go on in the winter. Want to know what else you should do when you stay in one of our cabins? Check out our Adventure Power Pass to see what kinds of tickets you’ll get to local attractions.