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Chimney Top’s Trail GSMNP

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This Sunday, the son and I decided to take a road trip over to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and hike the Chimney Top’s Trail. I’ve been itching to do this trail for some time and with it being only 4 miles round trip, it was about the length we needed so that we could be back earlier Sunday evening.

The trail climbs about 1,400 feet in 2 miles and definitely makes for a steep trail. With all the rain from the previous day the trail was muddy in spots, but I have to say the trail crews have been busy and have made a lot of improvements. The construction is still in progress. The Trails Forever program is a cool program that’s getting this type of work done on many of the trails within the GSMNP. Check them out here.

For most of the hike, it was really foggy with a little drizzle. I was at first disappointed that we wouldn’t have the great views, but the fog actually added to the experience of the trail and I’m so glad we decided to go ahead and do it regardless of the weather. If you wait for the weather, you’ll never do anything! Below are some pics along the way…

Map of the area.

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Below is the new bridge that washed out in 2013.

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At this point you make a right to go on up to the Chimney Tops.  If you stay straight, you’ll come out at Newfound Gap and can continue out on the Appalachian trail towards Charlie’s Bunion.

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AJ exploring the base of the rock climb to the top.

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On the way back down, the sun starts to shine through the clouds.

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Here’s a Runkeeper of the hike.  Short video below.  Thanks for dropping by!

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O&W Trail and Devil’s Den

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Hey guys!  Decided to head out on the trail again this weekend.  I’m having trouble at this point finding trails that don’t require me to drive 2+ hours to get too.  That’s ok, I’m ready to branch out, but this weekend I had limited time on Saturday so I decided to re-hike the O&W trail in Big South Fork National Park.  I’ve done this trail about 5 times now and it’s a nice 5 miler that goes along side the Big South Fork river, ascends some and ends at the O&W Bridge, which use to be a railroad bridge but now you can drive across.  Just this last week, I had heard that if you go on across the bridge you can jump onto a trail that will take you up to Devil’s Den.  After crossing the bridge, the sign said .5 miles to Devil’s Den and even though I needed to be heading back, I decided to hike on up and check it out.  Yes, I said UP.  That portion is entirely up.  Did I say it was up?  But at only .5 miles, it’s not too bad.  Ok, I decided to sit down once but what the hell, it was right next to a waterfall and why not take some time and take it all in?

Pic’s below:

Started off from my little “cabin”.  Went down to it Friday night for some much needed relaxation!

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Video below and Runkeeper here: