Mountains to Sea Section 1 Trail

At A Glance

Most Difficult

68.9 mi one-way

Difficulty Rating: 68.9
Steepness: Hilly
Tread Condition: Moderately Rough
Blaze Color: White


Clingman's Dome to Waterrock Knob

From the start of the trail at Clingmans Dome on the Appalachian Trail in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park (north), to the summit of Waterrock Knob off the Blue Ridge Parkway. The trail is all on existing footpath in the Smoky Mountains, but then follows two alternate routes which are not yet completed and include segments of road.

The two alternate routes include the southern one, which passes through Cherokee, Bryson City, and Dillsboro, and then climbs back to the Blue Ridge Parkway through the town of Sylva's Pinnacle Park.

The northern alternative passes through the Smokies' Balsam Mountain area, and then follows the Parkway south to Waterrock Knob.

It has not been decided which of the two routes will eventually be chosen due to the terrain and land disputes along them.

This trail is located in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park area. For a list of all the trails in that area, see the Great Smoky Mountains National Park trails list page.

All Photos from the Trail

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Nancy said: All my Trail info shows segment one from Clingmans Dome to Water Rock Knob is 47 miles. But your guide says 65 miles. Is your information reliable? Thanks you for any follow up, Nancy

Sunday, August 30 2020 12:42pm

Dee said: I am wanting to begin the MTS trail starting with Section 1. I know I will need to hike this in two days. Possibly an overnight or two day hikes. Could you possibly suggest where the half way would be...where I could shuttle too; if I do it in two days. Also are there campsites or shelters along this section. Thank you for any assistance you can give me.

Wednesday, February 26 2014 12:41am
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