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Trip Finder: Waterfall Hikes

Nine ways to get your cascade fix from Tennessee to Montana.


Honey Creek Loop, TN
The Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area spans 125,000 acres of gorges and bluffs near the Tennessee-Kentucky border. The Honey Creek Loop is a short but challenging six-mile strike to its four best drops. Perhaps inspired by erratic Moonshine Falls, the path staggers back and forth across the creek, then cuts into a canyon some call the East’s only slot. Camp on a flat site by the Big South Fork, and curve south back to the trailhead.

Gregory Bald Loop, NC
This 16-miler is blessed with two Smokies icons: balds and falls. Follow Twentymile Trail past its namesake cascades before climbing steeply to the Upper Flats tent site. Day two is a scenic ascent to the 15-acre crest of Gregory Bald. Descend to the Sheep Pen Gap campsite, nestled in a glade with a spring nearby. End with a seven-mile cruise down Dalton Ridge.

Appalachian Trail, GA
At 729 feet, Amicalola Falls is the state’s biggest drop. Warm up on Amicalola Falls State Park’s 600-step stairway to its base. Then hoof it eight miles on the AT Approach Trail to Springer Mountain Shelter. Trek 7.6 miles through oaks to overnight at Long Creek Falls. Roll seven miles to Gooch Gap on day three. End with five miles to Woody, Georgia.

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