Are you planning to hiking in the Smokies? Check out my hiking tips, plus some of the best trails in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a massive park and is filled with mile after mile of hiking trails.
If you’re going hiking in the Smokies and are trying to plan your trip– I can help!
Check out my Smoky Mountain tips below, and then a list of my favorite hikes in the Smokies.
Headed to the Smokies? Check out my recommended hiking gear for the Smoky Mountains!
Do I Need Bear Spray While Hiking in the Smokies?
And better safe than sorry, right?
Will I Have A Cell Phone Signal Inside the Park for GPS?
If you’re like me, and typically rely on cellphone GPS to find your trail locations, no cell phone service can be a problem!
I recommend carrying a map.
We used this Smoky Mountains Trail Map from National Geographic, and it was much better than the park’s free trail map.
WiFi Tip: I was also able to connect to WiFi in some of the Visitor’s Centers!
Need a Phone Signal? Drive into a nearby town (like Gatlinburg, Townsend, or Cherokee).
Do I Need My Trekking Poles While Hiking in the Smokies?
If you typically hike with trekking poles, I’d say yes.
I was SO HAPPY that I had my trekking pole.
A lot of the trails we hiked included stairs, roots and loose rocks on the trail, and elevation changes.
The pole helped.
Do the Park Campgrounds Have Showers?
Nope, they definitely do not.
We’ve stayed at both the Cades Cove and Elkmont campgrounds, but definitely found the nearby KOAs to be more comfortable.
BUT, if you’re planning on visiting the Smokies to see synchronized fireflies in early summer, try to stay at Elkmont campground.
What Are Some Easy Hiking Trails?
Most of the best trails listed below are moderate or strenuous hikes.
If you prefer easier trails, or you want to let your legs rest in between harder hikes, try hiking to Laurel Falls, visit the Mingus Mill, or check out the Clingmans Dome Observation Tower.