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Meigs Mountain Trail

Easy/Intermediate

Trail

6.1 mile 9.8 kilometer point to point
91% Runnable
Easy/Intermediate

Elevation

Ascent: 868' 264 m
Descent: -939' -286 m
High: 2,886' 880 m
Low: 2,411' 735 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 6% (3°)
Max Grade: 20% (11°)

Dogs

No Dogs
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Trail shared by David Hitchcock

A quiet trip from Elkmont to Tremont with wildflowers and old home sites.

David Hitchcock

Features Fall Colors · River/Creek · Wildflowers

Closed when the Little River Road is closed from the Townsend Y to Sugarlands Visitor Center. For park road conditions, information can be found at twitter.com/smokiesroadsnps or by calling (865) 436-1200 and dialing extension 2, 2.

Runner Notes

It's a pretty wide trail and in terms of Smokies trails, it is relatively clear of rocks and roots. There are several creek crossings that can be easily jumped or rock hopped, but otherwise it's pretty flat and easy going.

Description

From the Sugarlands Visitor Center near Gatlinburg, drive 4.9 miles west along the Little River Road to the turnoff for the Elkmont Campground. Turn left into Elkmont, and go 1.4 miles to the campground, turning left and driving another 0.6 miles to the parking area for the Cucumber Gap Loop.

The turnoff for the Elkmont Campground will be 12.6 miles away from the Townsend Y on the Little River Road.

The Meigs Mountain Trail connects two areas of the park, the Elkmont community and Tremont. The trail passes old vacation homes, long deserted and in need of repair, as it climbs towards the Meigs Mountain trailhead roughly .7 miles from the parking lot. From here, the trail breaks to the right and descends along Jakes Creek, which can easily be rock hopped or crossed via a foot log downstream.

When the trail comes to a fork, Meigs Mountain Trail goes to the left. The trail begins to ascend through the woods where the settlers raised their crops before they had to sell their land to the government so that it could become part of the National Park. You'll pass stone walls, home foundations, daffodils, and an old spring house before you work your way through a cove and then down into a creek valley. At 1.9 miles, you'll encounter campsite 20, where several small creeks come together. It's a relatively flat, open hollow, thanks this being old farmland.

There are several more creek crossings, which can be made easily even if they are muddy. You may notice some rusted pieces of an engine after the second creek crossing, evidence of the logging done in the Smokies prior to it becoming a national park.

At 4.1 miles, you meet the Curry Mountain Trail on the right, which descends 3.3 miles to the Little River Road at Metcalf Bottoms. Just .2 miles after this junction, a small spur trail leads to a small, maintained cemetery where most of the headstone are small and unmarked, but some belong to the Huskey family.

A littler further down the trail at 4.6 miles, you encounter campsite 19, where the Andy Brackin homestead stood in the 1930s. You continue along through forests of Eastern hemlocks, Fraser magnolias, grapevines, and other trees. You start a long descent through upper Buckhorn Gap and continuing until you reach a dry, sandy gap where the Meigs Creek Trail joins the trail from the Sinks (3.5 miles away).

At this point, the trail becomes the Lumber Ridge Trail and descends to Tremont.

Flora & Fauna

Due to the homesites in the area, lots of wildflowers can be seen here as well as a large variety of trees, thanks to this area being logged, settled, and then abandoned when the area became a National Park.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker Woodpeckers, deer, and bear have all be spotted in the area.

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Trail Ratings

  3.5 from 2 votes

#12

in Elkmont

#17393

Overall
  3.5 from 2 votes
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Trail Rankings

#12

in Elkmont

#343

in North Carolina

#17,393

Overall
21 Views Last Month
736 Since Sep 4, 2015
Easy/Intermediate

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Photos

When you reach the end of the trail, you have several options in regards to where you go next.
Jan 28, 2016 near Gatlinburg, TN
Jake's Creek as it flows past the Meigs Mountain Trail.
Jan 23, 2016 near Gatlinburg, TN
Miens Mountain Trail as it winds through the woods.
Jan 23, 2016 near Gatlinburg, TN
Climbing along the trail through the forest between Campsite 20 and Curry Mountain Trail.
Jan 28, 2016 near Gatlinburg, TN
Miegs Mountain Trail.
Jan 23, 2016 near Gatlinburg, TN
Grapevines hang in the trees along the trail between the Curry Mountain Trail and Campsite 19.
Jan 28, 2016 near Gatlinburg, TN

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