Trail Notes: Cosby Nature Trail, GSMNP

Trail Team 11

The Hike: Cosby Nature Trail
The Place: Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Cosby Campground

Who’s ready for camping? I know that I am – and this hike has not only a campground, but easy access to several well-known Smokey Mountain trails.

I went up to the Cosby Campground, on the east side of the Smokies, is a mixed reservations/first-come-first-served campground.

The Cosby Nature Trail is a windy path with multiple water crossings via bridges. At just longer than 1-mile, is rated as easy by AllTrails.

My venture on this trail was interesting. The portion of the trail that doubles as the Low Gap Trail was a muddy mess with some kids plopped down in the middle. I ended up going down by the water to bypass, and had to claw my way back up to the trail.

If you don’t run into this issue, this lasso trail is an easy and relaxing hike. If you’re not a huge fan of the narrow tree-based bridges, be ready to ford the creeks. I ended up doing this on one of the last bridges (not the one in the photos) that I crossed.

If you’re into wildflowers, this is also a great place for you. I spotted several types of flowers, plus some fungi, along this trail. Birders should also be happy.

Overall: Be prepared for some mud and a rushing creek, but it’s a beauty.

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