The granddaddy of all Eastern US trails, this classic 2,200-mile landmark covers 14 states. But you just need to focus on the portion that crosses the Newfound Gap, which displays the most amazing spectrum of foliage in the area.
A recent post about this trek to Mt. LeConte mentioned the first half of this hike, which goes to this well-known spot. From this vantage point, you’ll see a blanket of red, gold, and orange from Little Duck Hawk Ridge to Myrtle Point.
This North Carolina-side path is short but sweet. In addition to seeing beautiful late-season colors, you can explore the primitive sites (the Davis House and the Mountain Farm Museum) representing Smoky Mountains life in the late 19th century to early 20th century. Gaze in wonder at the asters that line the river banks and put on a colorful show.
Another classic Smoky Mountain hike, this challenging trail takes its visitors through a six-mile one-way steady climb on the Low Gap, Appalachian and then Mt. Cammerer routes along the Cosby Creek Valley.
If you want to see a little bit of everything that’s quintessential fall colors in the Smoky Mountains, come along on this moderate hike. If this is your first time hiking the Smokies, this is a great trail to pick because you’ll see a lot of color and a lot of sites.