Located just minutes away from our cabins in Gatlinburg, the Albright Grove Loop Trail is one of the best hikes in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Read on to find out what to expect when you traverse this stunning trail.
The Albright Grove Loop Trail is an excellent trail for experienced hikers. At 7 miles long, it is a longer trail, but it is also a convenient loop so that hikers are moving through new habitat all along its length. It is rated at a 10 out of 10, and therefore is considered strenuous and should be undertaken only by those prepared for a harder hike.
The Albright Grove Loop is actually utilizing a section of the longer Maddron Bald Trail. The first 2.3 miles are a gradual ascent along an old gravel road. This levels off near Baxter Cabin, an historic relic built in 1889. The gravel road ends and turns into a rough dirt path that narrows as it passes through old-growth forest. After passing through Indian Camp Creek at mile 2.7, there is a junction at mile 3.0. Taking a right at this junction will keep the hiker on the Albright Grove Loop Trail. This is where the hiker can see that the loop trail gets its name, as this section is referred to as Albright Grove.
Albright Grove is an excellent example of old-growth cove hardwood forest – this is one of the most diverse types of forest habitat in North America, and as old-growth, is incredibly rare and disappearing due to habitat loss from development and habitat destruction.
This area was not intensively logged, unlike most of the forests throughout the Smoky Mountains National Park, nor did it suffer from the common fungal blights and infections. Special tree species include hemlock and poplar, and also in the area are beeches, maples, and oaks. Thanks to this splendid old-growth, many animal species thrive here as well, and this area is especially fruitful to birdwatchers and other wildlife enthusiasts.
After a fun day of hiking in the Smokies, you can relax in your cozy cabin, chalet or condo. Amazing Views Cabin Rentals has luxurious lodging in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge. Equipped with hot tubs, fireplaces and jacuzzis, our properties have everything you could possibly need for an unforgettable Smoky Mountains vacation. Visit our Specials page to learn about our latest discounts and coupons!