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Tennessee

Looking for the best backpacking in Tennessee? We've got you covered with the top trails, trips, hiking, backpacking, camping and more around Tennessee. The detailed guides, photos, and reviews are all submitted by the Outbound community.

Top Backpacking Spots in and near Tennessee

  • Gatlinburg, Tennessee

    Mt. LeConte via Alum Cave Bluff

    5.0
    10.68 mi / 3982 ft gain
    The Alum Cave trailhead is on Newfound Gap Road, 8 miles from the Sugarlands Visitor Center. Mt. LeConte is the third highest peak in the Smokies, and this is an extremely popular hike, so arrive early to get a parking spot and beat the crowds. Starting from the parking lot the trail gently wind...
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  • Altamont, Tennessee

    Greeter Falls and Blue Hole

    4.9
    1.79 mi / 417 ft gain
    An easy, yet extremely beautiful and well marked drive leads to a pretty sizable parking lot at the trailhead. There are multiple trails to hike, depending on how much time you have or how long you want to hike. This particular trail makes for a perfect day trip from Nashville, Chattanooga or Kno...
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  • Sparta, Tennessee

    Virgin Falls State Natural Area Loop

    5.0
    4.46 mi / 400 ft gain
    Beginning at the Virgin Falls SNA parking area, the Virgin Falls trail is approximately a 9 mile round trip (excluding any side trails) which will allow you to experience three waterfalls: Big Branch Falls, Big Laurel Falls, and the namesake Virgin Falls. There is a fourth, Sheep Cave Falls, that...
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  • Roan Mountain, Tennessee

    Roan Highlands: Carvers Gap to US 19E via Appalachian Trail

    5.0
    15.47 mi / 2598 ft gain
    The Roan highlands, possibly one of the best sections of the Appalachian Trail, is a section of grassy balds that range from 5000-6000 feet following the A.T. Start at Carvers Gap ( Highway 261 NC / Highway 143 TN) on the TN/NC border. You can either leave a car at Highway 19E or arrange for a s...
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  • Del Rio, Tennessee

    Max Patch Mountain

    5.0
    1.51 mi / 315 ft gain
    Max Patch Mountain was once cleared for pasture land, leaving an expansive flat summit that now serves as the ideal location for a picnic hike, flying a kite, or laying in the sun surrounded by the Great Smoky Mountains. With little elevation gain and a short distance it is also very family (and ...
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  • Del Rio, Tennessee

    Max Patch to Hot Springs, N.C. via Appalachian Trail

    3.0
    14.06 mi / 2966 ft gain
    Make a weekend trip from Max Patch to Hot Springs N.C., and be sure to soak in the natural hot springs at the old inn after your hike! This is an incredible, relatively easy hike with the reward at the end being hot springs on the French Broad River. You can break this up however you like, this i...
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  • Smithville, Tennessee

    Hike to Carmac Falls

    5.0
    1 mi / 90 ft gain
    It is important to note that Carmac Falls is located on the private property of Evins Mill, a resort and special event venue that hosts weddings, conferences and other contractually exclusive events. As such, one must be a guest of the resort in order to access its property and enjoy its trails, ...
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  • Sevier County, Tennessee

    Little River Trail to Backcountry Campsite #30

    5.0
    12.34 mi / 412 ft gain
    The trailhead parking area is large but if no spaces are available additional parking can be had at the Jake's Creek trailhead at the top of the hill and to the right of the Little River trail parking lot. After parking, the trailhead itself will be to the left of the parking area. Parking Lot Co...
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  • Nashville, Tennessee

    Volunteer Trail

    4.0
    11.03 mi / 1070 ft gain
    Starting at the Bakers Grove Area parking lot, start hiking on the lovely wood chipped trail. The Volunteer Trail and Day Loop share this first section of the trail. In about .5 miles you will reach a sign and a junction on the trail. Follow the whites blazes on The Volunteer Trail to the right ...
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  • Tracy City, Tennessee

    Hike the Fiery Gizzard Trail

    5.0
    13.5 mi
    Start this journey from the Grundy Forest Trailhead, where you will quickly begin a decent along the Little Fiery Gizzard Creek. At the 0.7-mile split, be sure to turn left and cross the bridge to stay on the Fiery Gizzard Trail. For the next 0.8-mile journey, you'll encounter the gorgeous Black ...
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  • Lancing, Tennessee

    Camp at OBED Wild and Scenic River Area via the Point Trail

    4 mi
    You will want to park at the Lilly Bluff parking lot. Your GPS won't know where this is, so here are the GPS coordinates N36° 06.162', W84° 43.280'.The trailhead is located on the North side of the parking lot. All you need to do is follow the sign for Point Trail. The trail culminates at an e...
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  • Gatlinburg, Tennessee

    Hike to Clingman’s Dome via Newfound Gap

    4.5
    16.6 mi / 1600 ft gain
    This route to Clingmans Dome is available throughout the year. But during the winter months from December 1 through March 31, the 7-mile Clingman’s Dome Road that branches off Highway 441 at Newfound Gap, stays closed. This means the usual drive to the parking area located just a half mile below ...
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  • Grandview, Tennessee

    Hike to Piney Falls

    5.0
    1.5 mi / 500 ft gain
    The gravel road heading to the trailhead is on the rougher side to take it slow. When you get to the trailhead it’s a small gravel pull off right off the road. There are no maps at the trailhead but there are only a few trails to take and they are marked with a blue marker. To get to the upper fa...
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  • Jamestown, Tennessee

    Twin Arches Loop

    1.22 mi / 177 ft gain
    The trail starts at the parking lot which has some nice bathrooms and a nice small picnic area that is open year-round. From the trailhead, you will follow the signs that will lead you to a short mostly flat, 7-mile hike to the first arch. Once you get to the first arch there is a small area with...
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  • Oneida, Tennessee

    Backpack to Angel Falls Overlook in the Big South Fork

    4.0
    6.4 mi / 800 ft gain
    Starting at a very small parking space, you head onto a fairly overgrown trail for half a mile. The trail then begins to thin out and is not as overgrown. Keeping a steady incline, you almost instantly feel the burn in your calves.  At around 2 miles in, there is a single grave from a baby that l...
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  • Townsend, Tennessee

    Backpack to Spence Field

    13.8 mi / 3100 ft gain
    Start your hike at Anthony Creek Trailhead (elevation 1,800 ft), in the Cade’s Cove area. The trailhead is located at the far end of the day-use picnic area near Cade’s Cove campground. There are a few parking spots right at the trailhead, but note that the picnic area closes at dusk (a gate clos...
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