Smoky Mountain Hiking Trails
There are miles of hiking trails to explore around Dancing Bear Lodge in Townsend, TN. Here at the top 3 hikes the owners recommend for their guests at Dancing Bear:
- Spruce Flat Falls – 2 miles round-trip, beginning at Tremont Institute. Moderate terrain – can be combined with a 16-mile round-trip bike ride to Tremont for a “biathlon”… and then a dip in the Little River for a tri-fun-a-thon! This is one of the most fun trails as it ends in a climbable waterfall. It takes about 20 minutes to get here by car and the total round-trip time for the hike and falls is about 2 hours. To complete the Tri-Fun-a-Thon, overnight guests can use the free rental bikes or bring their own. We also suggest River Rats for tubing for an all-day fun event! Come back to Apple Valley Beer Garden for refreshments after your ride!
- Middle Prong – 3 miles past Tremont on a gravel road. An easy hike on an old logging road which can be as long or short as you want, as it is out and back. We like this trail because it’s a nice way to get outside and you can control the length. Great for young kids or great for a longer trek. It’s 8 miles, one way, to the Appalachian Trial. Or just several hundred yards to some great water features and waterfalls. Water in abundance on this trail. This can take 30 minutes or 5-6 hours. Your call! Definitely come back to Apple Valley for a cold brew, or a post-hike cocktail in the deck at Dancing Bear Appalachian Bistro!
- Rich Mountain Loop – At the entrance of Cades Cove (park your car before driving the loop). This trail runs for an 8-mile loop and is somewhat strenuous but not difficult, and you avoid the 11-mile loop that can get very slow with “Bear Jams”! Definitely allow 5-6 hours, so this is a great hike to pack a picnic lunch for the day. Picnic lunches can be bought from Dancing Bear or Apple Valley. This trail could be done on Saturday but you’d want to get out there before 9 AM. Again, we would not recommend driving the Cades Cove Loop road during busy times of the year due to the excessive traffic. By car, the Rich Mountain loop trail head is about 30 minutes from DBL. The 8-mile loop will take 4-5 hours total. Make sure you make dinner reservations before leaving. There is no cell service in the National Park.
Enjoy these hikes when you visit Dancing Bear Lodge, or explore the area and find even more great hiking trails! And make sure to grab one of our Gourmet Mountainside Picnic Baskets to take along on your adventure.
Call our Sales Office for more information about our Gourmet Mountainside Picnic Baskets at 1-800-369-0111 ext. 3.