This is a change from the 2023 Handbook Family Friendly Easy Hike.
The hike begins at the far end of the Cades Cove Visitor Orientation Pavilion. The trailhead is located just past the Cove entrance gate on the right. Rich Mountain trails meanders a mile and a half up and down along the base of Rich Mountain before reaching the John Oliver cabin site. There is no elevation gain but you will walk up and down a few small hills on the way to the cabin. The earliest settlers lived along this lower edge of the mountain. A large mount/hill can be seen in one of the open fields. It has been excavated twice by the Park Service and there are no signs of it being an Indian Mound or indeed any sign of human construction. The trail crosses three streams a total of six times. These are all shallow rock hops. The streams are Crooked Arm Branch, Harrison Branch and Martha’s Branch. You are welcome to stop off at the Cades Cove store for ice cream after the hike or bring a picnic lunch for after the hike.
Total distance 3 miles. Rated easy. Meet me at the Cades Cove Pavilion near the entrance gate to Cades Cove at 10:00 am. Parking passes are available at the Pavilion. Email the hike leader for more specific directions.
Leader: Steve Dunkin
Leader contact information is included under Additional Information in the email you receive after registration.
Smoky Mountains Hiking Club
PO Box 51592
Knoxville, TN 37950-1592