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Newton Bald Trail

Intermediate
 3.0 (1)

This trail is part of the MST and rewards runners in the spring with flaming azaleas atop the bald.


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Map Key

5.5

Miles

8.8

KM

73%

Runnable

5,055' 1,541 m

High

2,185' 666 m

Low

2,872' 875 m

Up

107' 33 m

Down

10%

Avg Grade (6°)

18%

Max Grade (10°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Birding · Fall Colors · Spring · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

All campsites must be registered with the Great Smoky Mountain National Park.

The Great Smoky Mountain National Park also closes secondary roads on a seasonal schedule due to snow. Schedules can be found here.

Backcountry rules and regulations can be found here.

Description

This is another one of the beautiful Smokies trails that follows a ridge and, in the spring, offers awesome views of flaming azaleas and wildflowers. The trailhead is located just off of Newfound Gap Road, close to the Smokemont Campground. Shortly into the run, a horse trail will connect - so watch your step!

A little over 4.5 miles into the trail is a junction with Mingus Creek Trail. From here, runners follow Thomas Ridge and pass through Newton Bald. This was once used as a grazing area, but has since then grown over a bit. Just past the junction is the Newton Bald Campsite, #52.

Flora & Fauna

The Smokies are home to more than 1,600 species of plants, most of which produce an abundance of flowers in the spring. These species include mountain laurel, rhododendron, azalea, and many others. Spring wildflowers peak from early April through late May. To learn more about the plants of the Smokies and even get a trees and shrubs checklist, visit the park's < ahref="www.nps.gov/grsm/learn/nature/plants.htm">website.

As for local fauna, black bears are common in the area, along with white-tailed deer and 31 species of salamanders.

Birdwatchers can spot a variety of species, notably the northern flicker (Colaptes auratus) and red-eyed vireo (Vireo olivaceus).

For more information on black bears, refer to this webpage.

Contacts

Shared By:

Max Willner

Trail Ratings

  3.0 from 1 vote

#15

in Oconaluftee

#24269

Overall
  3.0 from 1 vote
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Trail Rankings

#15

in Oconaluftee

#1,005

in North Carolina

#24,269

Overall
28 Views Last Month
1,950 Since Sep 4, 2015
Intermediate

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Photos

Campsite at Newton's Bald.
Nov 7, 2020 near Cherokee, NC
The trail can appear to be lost in the leaves in the fall.  The leaves are dry up on the ridgelines.
Nov 25, 2017 near Cherokee, NC
Camp 52 (Newton Bald) offers decent views when the leaves are off the trees.
Apr 17, 2017 near Cherokee, NC
Winds can move fast through the Smokies.  Here, a tree appears shows the effects the wind can have on trees along the ridgeline.
Nov 25, 2017 near Cherokee, NC

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