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Gregory Ridge Trail

Intermediate/Difficult
 4.8 (5)

A trail that leads directly from the end of Forge Creek Road to Gregory Bald Trail.


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Map Key

5.0

Miles

8.0

KM

Point to Point

4,601' 1,402 m

High

1,956' 596 m

Low

2,677' 816 m

Up

32' 10 m

Down

10%

Avg Grade (6°)

22%

Max Grade (12°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Fall Colors · Spring · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

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

All campsites must be registered with the park. Backcountry rules and regulations can be found here.

Description

This trail begins at the end of Forge Creek Road near Parsons Branch Road. The trailhead has a small parking area.

The trail follows Forge Creek up until it reaches Campsite #12. There's plenty of water at this site. From here, it's roughly a 2,400' climb towards Rich Gap - a bit more of a challenge than the first two miles. Hikers will gain elevation quickly, though, and eventually reach the Appalachian Trail and Gregory Bald Trail. The four-way intersection also cuts south as Long Hungry Ridge Trail, towards the Twentymile Ranger Station.

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 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

  4.8 from 5 votes

#2

in Cades Cove

#1931

Overall
  4.8 from 5 votes
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Trail Rankings

#2

in Cades Cove

#1,931

Overall
12 Views Last Month
1,538 Since Sep 4, 2015
Intermediate/Difficult

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Photos

One of the three log bridges that must be crossed.   Use caution in the mornings as they may be icy with ice or frost due to the cooler temperatures around the creeks.
Nov 26, 2017 near Wildwood, TN
The trail narrows in places.   Fall brings a lot of fallen leaves, so watch your step as rocks and roots may be hiding underneath.
Nov 26, 2017 near Wildwood, TN
Camp 12. Very good creek by the campsite. Flat area just behind good for tents.
Oct 3, 2016 near Robbins…, NC
A tall holly bush sits off to the side of the trail.
Nov 25, 2017 near Wildwood, TN
Campsite 12 from the trail above the Campground.   The trail climbs steeply from the campground as the trail climbs more that the previous section of trail.
Nov 26, 2017 near Wildwood, TN
A break in the trees, thanks to high winds that blew through the area a couple of years ago, gives you good views of the surrounding mountains.
Nov 26, 2017 near Wildwood, TN

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Check-Ins

Aug 18, 2020
Brian Rishel
4h 30m
Aug 17, 2020
Jeff Kuban
5mi
Jun 26, 2019
Alex Most
Jan 8, 2019
Robert McDaniel
Sep 8, 2018
Joe Blaszczyk
Jun 24, 2018
John Keoni Cappiello
5mi
Jun 13, 2018
Taylor Jadin
Nov 20, 2017
David Hitchcock
Difficult hike up Gregory Ridge to the Bald with fantastic views of Cades Cove and the surrounding mountains on the NC side. 9.8mi