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Old Sugarlands Trail

Easy/Intermediate
 2.8 (5)

A trail that offers opportunities to explore the remains of the Sugarlands Community.


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Map Key

4.0

Miles

6.4

KM

Point to Point

2,567' 782 m

High

1,464' 446 m

Low

1,156' 352 m

Up

53' 16 m

Down

6%

Avg Grade (3°)

20%

Max Grade (11°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features River/Creek · Wildflowers

Family Friendly This trail through the old Sugarlands community offers historic sites for the kids to explore. The first 1.5 miles is relatively flat, for easy hiking.

Due to its location, this trail is accessible in all types of weather so it's very rarely closed.

Description

The trailhead is located on the Newfound Gap Road 200 yards north of the Sugarlands Visitor Center.

The trail splits immediately, and Old Sugarlands trail goes to the right and hugs the left bank of the river. Even though you are close to US 441, the river drowns the sounds of the cars. A large rock cliff on the left is the site of an old quarry the state of TN used to build a road over the mountains. The trail moves away from the river for a little bit as it narrows. The trail then takes a hard right and winds back down to the river.

As the trail continues, it follows what was once Tennessee State Highway 71, one of the first paved roads over the mountains that ran through the heart of the Sugarlands community. The name Sugarlands is believed to have come from the sugar maple trees that once grew in the area.


The trail winds through the remains of the Sugarlands community and an old CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps) camp at mile 1.7. There are plenty of remains to explore as you follow the trail. Make sure you pay attention to the trail signs as there are plenty of side adventures to explore. The Sugarlands Cemetery and an old school can be found down one path while old foundations and rock walls can be seen along the main trail.

The trail begins ascending for 2 miles until it reaches the end of the trail. At 3.3 miles, you encounter the equestrian trail, Two Mile Lead Concession Horse Trail. At 3.5 miles, you encounter the Bull Head Trail that leads to Mount LeConte and at 3.9 miles, you encounter Cherokee Orchard Road. For your return trip, you can either return via the path you have already traveled or choose the shorter 2.9 mile Two Mile Branch Trail.

This trail isn't heavily traveled, so it can be a quiet journey in the woods. It's great for people who like to explore the history of the area before it became a National Park.

Flora & Fauna

Wildflowers can be found among the homesites. Heal-all, trailing arbutus, bloodroot, and spring-beauty are some of the many flowers in the area. Plants like daffodils and yuccas can be found around old homesites.

Deer, bear, and other mammals live in the area, so be on the lookout.

Contacts

Shared By:

David Hitchcock

Trail Ratings

  2.8 from 5 votes

#4

in Sugarlands

#21757

Overall
  2.8 from 5 votes
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Trail Rankings

#4

in Sugarlands

#457

in North Carolina

#21,757

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Photos

The start of Trillium Gap Trail.
Sep 4, 2015 near Gatlinburg, TN
LeConte Creek
Sep 4, 2015 near Gatlinburg, TN
West Prong Little Pigeon River
Jan 21, 2020 near Gatlinburg, TN
The Sugarlands Trail starts as a wide trail as it works its way to the Sugarlands Community.
Feb 6, 2016 near Gatlinburg, TN
West Prong Little Pigeon River Old Sugarland Trail
Jan 21, 2020 near Gatlinburg, TN
Moss covered cement blocks.
Feb 6, 2016 near Gatlinburg, TN

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Check-Ins

May 22, 2020
Jama Gray
May 12, 2020
Ruth Elizabeth
Oct 20, 2019
Hitch Marden
3.5mi — 2h 00m
Sep 30, 2019
Thomas Mcadorey
Taking my time. All down hill. 4mi — 11h 00m
Nov 22, 2018
Jeff C
May 22, 2018
Steve Bair
Aug 27, 2017
Michael Flanigan
3.4mi