With the month of September in decline, you know what’s coming up next – the absolute peak of the Autumn season and the Autumn colors. For such an extensive mountain range we have here in Sevier County and the enormous National Park, it’s no surprise that we get thousands and thousands and thousands of people come here from all over the country and world just to see the red, orange, yellow, green, purple and brown trees up close and in enormous clusters from miles away.

The impact of seeing the Autumn Smoky Mountain colors at their peak is an intense moment of universal spirituality and many folks like to try to make sure they capture that spirit at its zenith so they create memories of the region and season to last forever. If you’re coming to the Smokies and want to find the ultimate bonding experience with your group and the spirit of the mountains, try hiking up to any of the waterfall hiking trails we have in East Tennessee!

Here’s a list and information on our hiking trails, as found on www.gatlinburg.com:

* Grotto Falls *
“There’s something magical about standing behind a wall of water as it cascades to the ground at Grotto, the only waterfall in the Smokies where you can do this. The walk to Grotto is as easy as pie. It’s just minutes out of Gatlinburg, right off the Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail, so make it a first stop on your day trip into the park. You can stroll the Trillium Trail through old-growth forests, and if you’re there in May, get ready to be wowed by the dazzling wildflowers.” www.gatlinburg.com

* Laurel Falls *
“Take a 2.6-mile walk on the paved trail to Laurel Falls, and you’ll see why so many people consider it a must-see. The 80-foot cascade is one of the most-photographed spots in all of the Smokies for good reason. It’s only a few miles from Sugarlands, right outside Gatlinburg. If you arrive in the early morning, you’ll beat the crowds and be rewarded with perfect photography lighting. Bring the whole family. The path is stroller, wheelchair and walker friendly.” www.gatlinburg.com

* Abrams Falls *
“The five-mile round trip along Abrams Creek is a moderate hike that’s worth every step. Cross the wooden bridge, and follow the path along the Cades Cove Valley floor among pine, oak, hemlock and rhododendron. When you arrive, you’ll see why a waterfall that’s only 20 feet high is one of the most popular places in the Smokies. The amount of rushing water is staggering, and the pool below it is long and deep. The warnings about swimming are worth heeding! The currents here are dangerous and have swept some to their deaths. Look, but don’t leap!”www.gatlinburg.com

* Ramsey Cascades *
“Ramsey Cascades is the highest waterfall accessible by trail in the park. Most of the water comes from the 6621′ Mt. Guyot, the second-highest mountain in the Great Smoky Mountains. Water drops 100 feet over rock outcroppings and collects in a small pool where numerous salamanders can be found. The trail to the waterfall gains over 2,000′ in elevation over its four-mile course, and the eight-mile roundtrip hike is considered strenuous but well worth the effort. It takes between five and seven hours to hike to the waterfall and back. The trail follows rushing rivers and streams for much of its length. The last two miles pass through an old-growth cove of hardwood forest with large tulip trees, basswoods, silverbells and yellow birches.”www.gatlinburg.com

Want to get more information on Smoky Mountain hiking trails? Visit http://www.hikinginthesmokys.com/.