Chimney Tops Trail – Located off Newfound Gap Road in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Chimney Tops is one of the most famous and difficult hikes in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Sitting at an altitude of 4,800 feet, the twin peaks of the summit are easily spotted from the roads below. It is also renowned for its rare rocky terrain within the park, making it a popular attraction. This roundtrip trail is four miles in length and quite a strenuous exercise.

The first part of the trail follows the gushing waters of Road Prong Creek and comes across several footbridges over the 0.9-mile route up to Beech Flats. During the spring and early summer seasons, hikers can also marvel at the sight of wildflowers such as rhododendrons, mountain laurels, and many others blooming along the way. Upon arriving at the junction of Beech Flats, you will have completed half of your journey, and will now need to make the decision of either branching off left towards the Appalachian Trail at Indian Gap (which is 2.4 miles away) or stay on the right side and ascend towards the summit.

To reach Chimney Tops, you need to stay on the main path on the right. Now the hard work starts. This part of the trail takes a westerly direction and then ascends over 730 feet for two-thirds of a mile before the path moves northward to the top ridge, and then eventually the summit. Here, hikers are welcomed by magnificent views of the mountains towards the east.

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