Autumn is one of the best times to hike in the Smoky Mountains. Laurel Falls, which is an easy 30 minute drive from Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, is a popular trail and attraction. The distance of the hike is fairly short at 2.6 miles round trip, rated low on the degree of difficulty scale and can be completed in about 90 minutes. Plus, during your hiking excursion you’ll see the 80-foot high Laurel Falls – magnificent sight to see, especially following a recent rain.
The Hike: Since Laurel Falls is one of the most frequented sights in the Smokies, the National Park Service has paved the trail. As such, the path is frequented by families with small children and strollers. If you arrive early you’ll miss the crowds but you can easily navigate the trail despite the stroller traffic.
Laurel Falls consists of an upper and a lower section, divided by a walkway known as Laurel Branch which crosses the stream at the base of the upper falls. After you soak up the views of the cascading 80-foot falls you can choose to continue on another 2.7 miles to the old fire tower atop Cove Mountain. Plan on spending five hours hiking, total, if you add this extra loop to your adventure.
Ashley is Reserve Direct’s travel expert, visiting Pigeon Forge to find the best travel tips, money-saving deals and insider information. With over 10 years of experience in first-hand-travel adventures, she shares her stories, advice, and current events to help you stay in the know.