Children are welcome on the Alum Cave Bluff hiking trail, although some might get tired on such a trek, so be prepared to carry them if you have to. Once you get about a mile into the trail, you’ll find a log and boulder remains from a flash flood and landslide that occurred in 1993 to your left side.

Once you reach the 1.5 mile point, you’ll arrive at Arch Rock, which allows you to take a set of stone stairs through one of the only natural arches within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. You’ll find Inspiration Point at mile marker 1.8, which offers the first panoramic view of the region. Then you’ll find some low shrubs on your final ascent to Alum Cave Bluff.

The Alum Cave Bluff trail will take you to a jutting ledge of black slate, which hangs over the trail and gives the impression of a cave. The “alum” comes from the deposits of alum on the vertical wall of the rock ledge. If you’ve got the gusto, you should trek on to LeConte Lodge, where you can see the rest of the beauty of the Great Smoky Mountains for yourself from a great viewpoint.

The Alum Cave Bluff trails and eventual trail up to LeConte lodge is just one of the many hiking trails available in the Smoky Mountains National Park. In all there are more than 800 mils of trails for the avid hiker to enjoy until their heart is content.

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