Ramsay Cascades and the 4 mile trail leading to the falls was the highlight of my 1st trip to the Smokies. Everything we saw that week end was wonderful, but this hike really stood out above the others. If you plan to go, the hike to the falls is all uphill and I read that it's a 2000' gain in elevation over the 4 miles. Some parts are quite a bit steeper than others and I would call it moderately difficult. The parking area for the falls is in the Greenbrier area of the park. From Gatlinburg, we headed about 6 miles north on 321 and turned right on Greenbrier Rd. The parking area is 5-6 miles down and is well marked.
The trail begins as an old gravel road through the forest. Huge boulders and moss covered fallen timber are everywhere. We passed several good sized beds of dwarf iris in bloom and other wildflowers added spots of color in the new yellow-green growth on the forest floor.
After about 1.5 miles, the road bed forms a small circle. At the opposite side of the circle, the trail becomes a foot trail and this is where the beauty of the forest really becomes evident. At the the halfway point, a foot bridge crosses Ramsay Prong. We took a break here, munched, and soaked up the scenery. The next shot here is on the falls side of the trail at this point, looking down stream.
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