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Jakes Creek AT Loop

Difficult
 4.5 (14) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A challenging, yet breathtaking 2-day loop with many highlights.


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Map Key

24.5

Miles

39.4

KM

Loop

5,746' 1,751 m

High

2,309' 704 m

Low

4,600' 1,402 m

Up

4,600' 1,402 m

Down

7%

Avg Grade (4°)

20%

Max Grade (11°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Cave · Fall Colors · River/Creek · Spring · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Overview

This loop is a challenging 2-day route that takes you past an old community, then up to some great views from the Appalachian Trail and back down, all while passing some beautiful cascading creeks.

Need to Know

Make sure to make backcountry camping reservation as the sites in the area tend to fill up.

Description

Start at the Jakes Creek Trail Trailhead parking area just past the Elkmont Campground. Start along the Jakes Creek Trail for .3 miles and turn left onto Cucumber Gap Trail. This trail steadily climbs for a little over a mile before descending back onto the Little River Trail.

Stay on Little River Trail for 1.3 miles until you cross Lost Creek by bridge. There is a nice large log to take a small break before starting up the long climb of Goshen Prong Trail. Make a right at Goshen Prong Trail. A creek flows to your right and after a mile you can see some beautiful cascades. Around the 3.2-mile mark, you'll reach campsite #23 which makes for a nice place to take a small rest. From here the trail begins to climb from about 3200' to 5700'.

Around the 5-mile mark there is a stream which will become your last water source until you reach the AT. Just past the stream is a small cave. Eventually, the Goshen Prong Trail ends at the Appalachian Trail. From here, turn right. Double Spring Gap shelter is .6 mile and makes for a great stopping point for the day. From the right turn that you just made, you'll reach Silers Bald which is marked by a marker on top of a rock. The shelter is located about .25 miles from here.

The AT continues along the top of the mountains never dropping you too far below the ridge line. Around the 3-mile mark, you'll turn right on Miry Ridge Trail and start a long descent of about 5 miles until you reach Jake's Gap.

From here jump on Jakes Creek Trail for a quick and easy 3.3 miles back to the trailhead.

Contacts

Shared By:

Brian Carpenter

Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 14 votes

#1

in Elkmont

#710

Overall
  4.5 from 14 votes
5 Star
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Recommended Route Rankings

#1

in Elkmont

#710

Overall
171 Views Last Month
6,544 Since Nov 27, 2016
Difficult

0%
0%
7%
0%
93%
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Photos

Looking south from the AT, you can see Fontana Lake in the distance.
Oct 18, 2016 near Gatlinburg, TN
Water crossing on Goshen Prong off of Little River Trail, Rocks and a fallen tree handrail make it an easy crossing.
Apr 27, 2016 near Gatlinburg, TN
Path is well-worn and has a bit of root/rock exposure. Wildflowers border the trail during springtime.
Jan 14, 2016 near Gatlinburg, TN
Jakes Creek Trail - gravel road.  Flowering trees during the springtime.
Jan 14, 2016 near Gatlinburg, TN
Sharp-lobed Hepatica on the Cucumber Gap Trail
Apr 22, 2019 near Gatlinburg, TN
Cucumber Gap Trail - a nice trail in the woods.
Jan 14, 2016 near Gatlinburg, TN

Weather


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Check-Ins

Oct 3, 2019
Josh Jarrell
Trail was great! There were a few areas with some overgrowth but the trail was still clearly visible. No issues to report. 26.5mi — 9h 13m
Aug 25, 2019
Mauricio H Munoz Acosta
Not for the faint of heart. Wife and I thought it would be easier but with bear warnings everywhere, it was tough to find spots to camp. Will give… 26.2mi — 15h 47m
Jul 5, 2019
Demetrio Gonzalez
26mi
May 25, 2019
Chris Moore
8h 00m
Mar 23, 2019
Scott Basford
Took this loop in reverse order and made it a single day hike and really enjoyed it; if you go by the signed mileage, it's 26 miles, not 24.5. 26mi — 10h 14m
Oct 20, 2018
Matt Milburn
Oct 4, 2018
Danny Landry
Great hike. Did 7 miles late on Weds & camped at #23. Nice campsite next to the river. Moderate climb 4.4 mile to the AT. AT section was great. 24.5mi — 8h 30m
Jul 28, 2018
Jason Rupert
Our write up is here: https://youtu.be/SIvK-tFnnc0 Enjoy!!! 24.5mi