Hike to Alum Cave

4.6 Miles Round Trip - 1120 ft gain - Out-and-Back Trail

Alum Cave Trailhead - Search Nearby - Added by Ally Woodall

The hike up to Alum Cave is very popular – and for goodreasons! From the interesting geological features and incredible views, you won’twant to miss this hike.

The Alum Cave trailhead is on Newfound Gap Road in the GreatSmoky Mountains National Park just under 9 miles from the Sugarlands visitorcenter. At the trailhead, there is a decent size parking lot with bathroomfacilities. If you can’t find parking, often people will pull over to the sideof Newfound Gap Road and park there. Planning an early morning hike can help toavoid the crowds.

The trail begins from the parking lot and begins by gentlyfollowing Alum Cave creek, gaining little elevation. At approximately 1.25miles, you’ll reach the first interesting geological feature, a hollow rocktunnel called Arch Rock. Fairly steep stairs will take you through Arch Rockonto the other side.

From here the trail has a more moderate elevation gain andwinds through the mountain forests until you reach Inspiration Point, at about2.0 miles. Stop here and take in the beautiful views of the Smoky Mountains andmaybe even take a few photos.

Finally at 2.3 miles you’ll reach Alum Cave. Don’t be fooledby the name, Alum Cave is not an actual cave. It’s more of a concave cliff, butgives the feel of a cave as it sits on the edge of the mountain and rises about90 feet tall. This is another great picture spot, or perhaps time to stop andenjoy a snack before the hike back down.

Tags

Photography
Hiking
Bathrooms
River
Scenic

Details

4.6 Miles
1120 ft elevation gain
Out-and-Back Trail

Stay Nearby

Pigeon Forge, Tennessee

Under Canvas Great Smoky Mountains

From $194/night

Cherokee, North Carolina

Cherokee / Great Smokies KOA

Pigeon Forge, Tennessee

Pigeon Forge / Gatlinburg KOA

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