Location: Western North Carolina
Trip Starts: US 441
Trip Ends: US 441
Total Distance: 4.0 miles
Hike Type: In & Out, Backtrack Hike
Hike Difficulty: Moderate to Difficult
Trails Used: Kephart Prong Trail
Trail Traffic: Moderate
Trip Type: Day or Overnight Hike
More Information:

Great Smoky Mountains National Park
107 Park Headquarters Road
Gatlinburg, TN 37738
(865) 436-1200


Great Smoky Mountains National Park encompasses 800 square miles of land and 95 percent of it is forested. The park is world renowned for the diversity of its plant and animal resources and for the beauty of its ancient mountains. Unfortunately, the majority of the people that visit the park never visit the backcountry and see some of the best wilderness in the Southeastern U.S.

This backtrack hike starts at US 441 on the North Carolina side of the part and just north of the Oconaluftee Visitors Center near Cherokee. The trail follows the The Kephart Prong which is a stream that runs down from Kephart Shelter to the Newfound Gap Road (also known as US 441). The shelter sleeps 10-12 and is situated in a valley at the junctions of the Grassy Branch and Sweat Heifer Trails.

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