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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

GSMNP - Abram's Falls

 One of the trails we wanted to hike while at Great Smoky Mountain National Park was the Abrams Falls Trail. There is a large parking lot accessed by a short dirt road off Cades Cove Loop Road. The trail is 5 miles roundtrip, and while it starts out pretty easy it takes a steep turn at about the halfway point as you ascend the ridge.  The trail to the falls traverses pine-oak forest on the ridges and hemlock and rhododendron forest along the creek. One of the unique things about this trail was the 3 bridges at the creek crossings.

We saw two different millipedes while on this hike, one that had yellow stripes and one that had red stripes. We chatted with a nice newlywed couple from Louisianna as we climbed the ridge, and had to shed our jackets when the sun came out.  The walk was a little difficult on the inclines, but overall it was much easier than the path to Clingman's Dome. When we got to Abram's Falls we rested for a little while, enjoying listening to others talk about their adventures in the park. The falls are only 20 feet high, but quite forceful, and it was wonderful to rest in the cool shade before starting the return trip. The hike took us 2.5 hours to complete, but if you like to linger or need time to rest after inclines I would suggest allowing 3-4 hours.


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