KINGSPORT, Tenn. (WJHL) – Oftentimes, it can be difficult for families to find a hike that everyone, of all ages, can go on. That’s not the case though when it comes to the trails that take hikers up to Ledbetter Gap on Bays Mountain. What’s interesting about Ledbetter Gap is that it is also the trailhead for multiple different hikes, some with much higher degrees of difficulty.
The trail to Ledbetter Gap is also a service road, on the Lake Road Trail. This means that the trail itself is wider and flatter, which means it’s easier for younger hikers with smaller legs. Megan Krager, the senior naturalist at Bays Mountain says there are certain hikes that will provide families the best opportunities for their little ones.
While hiking along the trails, hikers will notice a lot of animal activity. From the birds to the fish, to the bevers and deer, there is a lot to see in only a mile. One of the most noticeable though has to be the bevers, who have created 2 visible dams along the trail, a lodge and knocked down multiple trees. In the video below, Megan explains why those dams are so important for species.
Another exciting aspect of the hike to Ledbetter Gap is the floating bridge. This bridge connects hikers on Lakeside Trail to the Western Part of the park and offers some incredible views of the park. From the floating bridge, hikers can see the beaver dam, a scent mound, and the reservoir. To see how to find the floating bride from the Lake Drive Trail, watch the video below.
It total, the hike to and from Ledbetter Gap is around 2 miles, with very little incline. You can first begin the hike by crossing the reservoir.