I recently hiked to Ramsey Cascades, located in the Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee, not far from Gatlinburg. It was a pleasant day, and I met several interesting people along the trail.
Note: the roads to the trailhead – both Greenbier Road and, especially, Ramsey Prong Road – are in poor condition. Visitors should drive very slowly along these four miles, weaving to avoid deep potholes in the gravel roadway. If you, the reader, work for the Great Smoky Mountains Nation Park system, then please – FIX THE ROADS! Thank you.
The four mile trail to Ramsey Cascades is strenuous, rated as difficult. Hikers will encounter a nearly 2200′ increase in elevation en route to the 100′ waterfall – the tallest in the park! – while enjoying sounds of running water, as the trail follows rushing rivers and streams for much of its length. And, it’s easy to appreciate a continuous canopy of trees to keep cool on a hot, sunny day.
You’ll see a few signs along the way –
And, cross a few bridges –
You’ll also pass through the largest old-growth forest in the Smokies, with some trees topping 150′ –
Footnote: I had the pleasure of interacting on several occasions with three nice women throughout the course of my hike, who shared an interesting story. While resting at the large tree (see above), they joined and informed me that they had observed two copperhead rattle snakes – I saw their iPhone pictures! – in the middle of the trail. What does this mean? Apparently, because I was only a short distance further along the trail, I must have walked right by the snakes without even noticing them. D’oh!
Speaking of the trail, you’d better wear good shoes –
Photographs of Ramsey Cascades
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Video of Ramsey Cascades –
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