May 27

Grotto Falls – Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Grotto Falls with People behind it watermark

This is one of our favorite hikes in Great Smoky Mountains National Park because it is the only hike with a walk behind waterfall.  Grotto Falls Trail is a well maintained, although muddy when wet, 2.8 mile roundtrip hike to Grotto Falls.  Side note- we highly recommend that you bring an extra pair of shoes or sandals that you can slip on after you do any hiking on dirt trails.  It sure made it nice to slip out of shoes that were slightly wet and muddy when we got back to the car.  Like most hikes to waterfalls it was an incline all the way there.  I would probably classify it as easy to moderate just depending on what kind of shape you are in.  To give you somewhat of an idea about how hard the hike was, we saw several families with children around the ages of 5 to 10 that were completing the hike.
Karen next to Grotto Falls watermark

On the hike you will cross several small shallow streams that cross the trail we just balanced from rock to rock to cross them.  Definitely take time at the top to go behind the waterfall even if there is a crowd so you can get your picture taken behind the waterfall and looking through the waterfall.  How often does a person get the chance to do that?
Grotto Falls Crossing Creek Watermark

When we reached the top Karen and I had to wait a few minutes to let a couple of families go behind the waterfall and we almost decided to head back down the trail.  I am glad that we thought it through and came to the conclusion that we might not be back to the Smokies in long time, if ever.  We made the right decision and it should not have even been something that we had to ponder.  If we would just be patient and take the opportunities that are before us then there can never be any regrets.  There is nothing worse than going on vacation and coming home thinking that we should have seen something or done something we did not do while we were there.
Karen behind Grotto Falls watermark
Karen with Grotto Falls Sign watermark

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1 comment

  1. freda phillips

    Glad you posted this. I don’t remember being told about it. I must have not asked enough questions when you returned. Perhaps something or someone distracted me. haha Good pictures and loved the story.

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