Mt Cammerer via Chestnut Branch Trail

#62 of 195 trails in Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Panoramic views of TN/NC from this historic lookout

15.2 miles 8713 feet Out & Back
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This is a great year round hike that offers so much for each season. We rated this trail strenuous for the elevation gain for it is just about straight up from Chestnut Branch Trail from the ranger's station, follow this for 2 miles until you intersect with the AT. Go south (left) on the AT for about 3.3 miles. There are some great resting spots with views and photo opts' use the topo for their location. You will reach the MT Cammerer Trail (not Lower Mt. Cammerer Trail) take this trail of .6 miles to reach the tower; there are a few rocky places to navigate. You are allowed to go inside and look around this tower that was completed in 1939 to provide a watchful eye over the mountains. There are many great views in the Smokies but this provides some of the best in the park. Find a level rock ledge and enjoy a lunch with views that are indescribable. This is a great hike to get away from the crowds during peak season.

Helen Rosko

5 Completed5 Reviews

About 12 miles out and back with all trails combined (Low Gap Trail to - AT - Mt. Cammerer trail). ~3,000 elevation change, took me 4 hours to summit and come back that includes about a 20-30 minute break at the fire tower. The first 2.9 miles are pretty steep and rough to get up. Then once you hit the AT there is a bit more climbing but much more relaxed as you are basically hiking the ridge. The last 2 miles are pleasant on top of the ridge with nice balds every once in awhile and rhododendron. The view is amazing, best I've seen in the Smokies so far. A treat of a hike, and leaves you feeling nice and worked out! #solohikes

Kayla Nicole

15 Completed15 Reviews

Was not most enjoyable hike, however view is my favorite in the smokies

Pat Helms

13 Completed17 Reviews

You'll find the trail-head located just past the parking lot of Big Creek Ranger Station. Its starts steep, but soon levels out to a very manageable climb up to the AT, sans a brisk switchback here and there.

The 3.3 mile workout on the AT up to the Cammerer Trail is rewarded by a beautiful ridge line hike - sandwiched between two very nice overlooks facing the east, while Cammerer's craggy head looks down on you from above.

Returning from the Cammerer Trail, the perspective views back down the AT are even better than going up!

Verlicia Perez

41 Completed13 Reviews

Mark Booher

14 Completed16 Reviews

Excellent views and a unique 'west-coast' style fire tower. This is a very intense hike so be prepared!

Chadwick Conner

15 Completed6 Reviews

This is a great hike with one of the best views has 360 degree panoramic view can see Mt Sterling fire tower, I40, and NC. Their is plenty of water at the base of trail but ounce past the first mile their is no water plan accordingly, Trail is steep and rocky in parts. The last .6 of the AT is very easy.

Travis ---------

3 Completed3 Reviews

The only part of this trail I did was the portion from Lower Mt Cammerer junction up the AT to Mt Cammerer. This portion of the trail is steep and rocky. Lots of breaks were needed. I've done this in sun, snow and cool fog, every time it's just as rough. At one point there is a large rock that you can climb to see a great view!