Pole Road Creek Trail
ElevationAscent: 0' 0 m
Descent: -1,767' -539 m
High: 4,244' 1,294 m
Low: 2,477' 755 m
GradeAvg Grade: 10% (6°)
Max Grade: 24% (13°)
Popular runs nearby
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“A trail with many creek crossings accompanied by lots of wildflowers and a couple of great views.”— David Hitchcock
Features River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers
Closed if Newfound Gap Road (US HWY 441 between Gatlinburg TN - Cherokee NC) is closed due to snow and ice. Newfound Gap Road information can be found at twitter.com/smokiesroadsnps or by calling (865) 436-1200 and dialing extension 2, 2.
As the trail drops from Clingmans Dome to Deep Creek, you will pass through various second growth forests, providing a variety of trees for the visitor to observe.
The trail descends from Upper Sassafras Gap along a dry ridge through a second growth forest. Wildflowers are found along the trail as it transitions into a cooler, wet, cove environment. As the trail continues downhill, it crosses Pole Road Creek for the first of many crossings. There are several small cascades that offer great photo opportunities if you are looking at the creek by the trail. The trail runs on the left side of the creek at this point and comes to a spot where a view of a waterfall is offered through the trees. The trail continues descending as it passes through a large stand of tulip trees at the 2 mile mark.
Ahead, the trail crosses Pole Road Creek and some feeder creeks multiple times. Rock hops are the the method for getting across these water hazards, so be aware if you are on trail after rain storms have gone through the area. If there has been rain, it might be worth finding a different trail until the creeks slow down some.
Wildflowers continue to be seen alongside the trail, making it great for wildflower lovers. Finally, the valley widens out a little bit and the trail levels out. A foot-log over Deep Creek brings the trail to its end at the junction with Deep Creek Trail.
At this point, you can either return to Clingmans Dome Road via the trails you just descended, although that is a lot of climbing to reach the road. If you follow the Deep Creek Trail south, there are several campsites (Campsites 56, 57, 58, 59, 60) for you to spend the night before arriving at the Deep Creek Campground and Ranger Station.
Flora & Fauna
Land Manager: NPS - Great Smoky Mountains National Park