Come for a guided nature walk with A Walk in the Woods and explore meadows sparkling with wildflowers...the majesty of old-growth trees...the caress of emerald-green moss...the symphony of a waterfall. Or stand on top of a mountain, surrounded by a floating mist, looking into an endless sea of mountains. Your A Walk in the Woods guides have hiked thousands of miles through these mountains and they'll lead you to some of the most magical places in North America. When you take a guided nature walk with them, you'll learn about the natural and human history of the Smokies in a fun and delightful way. You'll hear Cherokee lore and maybe an Appalachian tall tale. You'll learn what the Native Americans and Settlers did for food and medicine before the there were grocery stores and pharmacies. You might even sample a tasty mountain treat. Every guided walk is geared towards enjoying the journey at a pleasant pace, using all of your senses to explore nature in a new way. Below are some of our guided nature walks.

We offer Two to Three Hour, Half Day, Full Day and One Hour Walks

We offer a 20% discount for kids under 18, and a 10% for Seniors. We also offer an additional 10% discount for parties of 4 or more. Please mention discounts that apply when booking the walk. For groups of 10 or more please call or email for group pricing, or see our groups page.

The above discounts do not apply to the following Specialty Walks : EXPLORING NATURE WITH CHILDREN, DISCOVER DAYS GONE BY, MEDICINAL PLANTS OF THE SMOKIES, BIRDING, NIGHT PROWL and SALAMANDER FORAY's.

We offer a cash discount on all our Walks and Hikes paid for with cash (see pricing below).

Prices marked with an * based on two person minimum. Customers traveling alone can join groups and pay the stated rate, but solo customers going out alone must pay for two.

On Half Day and Full Day Walks, we can provide a lunch of sandwich, chips and a cookie for an additional $10 per person fee, except for the BIRDING and SALAMANDER FORAY's.

Don't have a car? We can provide transportation from most Gatlinburg locations for an additional fee of $30 for up to 6 people, subject to availability.

Questions? Visit our Frequently Asked Questions page.

A sample of the walks we offer are:

 

2014 Pricing
Two to Three Hour Guided Nature Walks. These walks offer a great introduction to the Great Smoky Mountains and what makes them so special.
Title of Walk A STROLL BACK IN TIME
Trail Time Two and a Half Hours
Price $31 or $29 With Cash Discount (Includes Snacks)*
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

This walk begins in one of the first areas settled in what is now the National Park. The trail is on an old roadbed, alongside a pristine and gorgeous mountain stream. We'll explore a small family cemetery, a 19th century barn, spring-house and restored cabin and more, while walking through the beauty of the deep forest. This walk is a great introduction to the Smokies.

Rating: For a 2.5 Hour walk this is Easy with a couple of Moderate spots.

Title of Walk SPRING NATURALIST RAMBLE WITH JAIMIE MATZKO
Trail Time Three Hours
Price $99 for first person, $21 each additional person ($95, $20 Respectively With Cash Discount).
Upcoming Dates
8AM - 11AM Saturday Mornings March through May. Call to schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

Join us for a 3 hour tour with Naturalist, Jaimie Matzko, as she shows you the wonders of spring in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Spend the morning exploring the different habitats, including one found only in the Southern Appalachians, a Cove hardwood forest as well as a Spruce- fir forest in search of wildflowers, migrating songbirds and other signs of spring. You'll be learning some simple birding ID techniques by sight and sound, so bring your binoculars. This tour will include some short, but moderate walks so be prepared to get out and go exploring!

Rating: For a 3 Hour walk this is Easy with some Moderate spots.

Title of Walk TOP OF OLD SMOKY
Trail Time Two and a Half Hours
Price $44 or $42 With Cash Discount (Includes Snacks)*
Upcoming Dates
This walk is offered April 1- November 30th.
Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

Come take a walk to the highest point in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Clingman's Dome. Most who walk up to the Dome take a tough paved trail to the top, but we'll take you to the Dome up a hidden trail. On a clear day, we can see Fontana Lake and beyond. The trail spills out to the crowded but scenic tower where you get 360 degree views of the world the tallest point in the Park, a place considered sacred to the Cherokee Indians.

Rating: For a 2.5 Hour walk this is Moderate.

Title of Walk NATURAL POOLS AND WATERFALLS
Trail Time Two and a Half Hours
Price $34 or $32 With Cash Discount (Includes Snacks)*
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

Take a naturalist's ramble off the beaten path to explore a hidden world of charming small Appalachian Mountain waterfalls. We will visit several along an un-maintained trail through old farm fields. This walk is moderately strenuous, with sprinkles of adventure when we rock hop across streams, and crest narrow ridges. An alternate walk will be offered during periods of wet weather.

This walk travels un-maintained trails, and is not suitable for people with strong reactions to poison ivy during the summer and fall months.

Rating: For a 2.5 hour walk this is Moderate with a couple of Difficult spots.

Title of Walk DISCOVER DAYS GONE BY WITH HISTORIAN Samantha Suttles
Program Time Three Hours
Price $99 for first person, $21 each additional person ($95, $20 Respectively With Cash Discount).
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is home to the largest collection of human artifacts of any National Park. Everything has a story. Before this became a National Park, there was a 130 year history of European settlers in these hills. Stories of strife and struggle, joys and celebrations and of daily life still linger among the oaks and pines. Samantha has a special love and knowledge of the history of this area. Come join her for a gentle half day exploration of one of these beautiful homesteads. We'll start our journey creek side and walk through a Rhododendron tunnel in search of a one-room school house. Along the way, we'll catch glimpses of evidence of previous settlement in the area. After exploring the schoolhouse and cemetery, we'll continue our journey to a homestead so loved the residents couldn't let go. Learn how these independent women lived off the land, their stories and struggles, and the reasons why they chose to stay long after their farm became part of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Rating: For a Three Hour Walk this is Easy.

Title of Class EXPLORING NATURE WITH CHILDREN
Trail Time Two Hours
Price
$32 per person,$105 per family up to 5 ($30, $100 Respectively With Cash Discount).
Rating Easy. Suitable for anybody in reasonable shape. Great for school kids, scouts or families.
Upcoming Dates
Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

Give your kids the gift of play and imagination using nature as inspiration.

Spend an afternoon reconnecting with Mother Nature through fun games designed to awake enthusiasm, focus attention and create conditions conducive to deeper insights. We will get our hands dirty playing in the earth, exploring creeks while looking for salamanders, tasting nature's foods and soaking up the fresh air and sounds of the woods. This course is the cure for Nature Deficit Disorder. Recommended for children 3-12 years old.

Title of Walk NIGHT PROWL
Trail Time Two and a Half Hours
Price $99 for first person, $35 each additional person ($95, $30 Respectively With Cash Discount)
Upcoming Dates
Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

Join us as we explore the dark, a time when most visitors are parked in front of the TV or the campfire. We will hit the trail then turn off our flashlights and learn about nocturnal animals and our own night vision. How do owls hunt in the dark? Why do bats use echolocation? Why do firefly's blink in the night? We will answer these questions and many more on this nighttime adventure.

Rating: For a 2.5 Hour walk this is Easy with a couple of Moderate spots.

Title of Walk SPRING WILDFLOWER WALK (This is a "Stroll Back in Time" plus)
Trail Time Three Hours
Price $41 or $39 With Cash Discount (Includes Snacks)*
Upcoming Dates
This walk is offered March 15th - May 15th.
Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

This walk offers one of the finest wildflower exhibits in the Smokies. The trail begins on a wide, old roadbed, alongside a gorgeous and pristine mountain stream. We'll explore a small family cemetery, a 19th century barn, spring-house and restored cabin. Several varieties of flowers make this an extra special trek in the spring. We'll than leave the human history behind as our trail narrows to a small woodland path that leads to a magical world of lush mosses, old trees and a magnificent display of spring wildflowers! This is truly some of the best that the Smokies has to offer, so bring your camera!

Rating: For a 3 Hour walk this is Easy with a couple of Moderate spots.

Title of Walk FALL COLOR WALK
Trail Time Three Hours
Price $47 or $45 With Cash Discount (Includes Snacks)*
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

Leave the crowds behind as we walk on the famous Appalachian Trail, through the Southern most extent of the world's largest forest. See beautiful plants found only in the Smokies. We'll pause on a high mountain Bald to enjoy the sea of mountains that surround us and the artist's palette of color that paint these Great Smoky Mountains during the Fall. We'll finish up our walk at the highest point on the entire Appalachian trail.

Rating: For a 3 hour walk this is Moderate.

Half Day Walks. Ready for more? These walks take us deeper into Smokies and are longer and often cover more rugged terrain than our two and a half hour walks.
Title of Walk ART HISTORY TOUR
Trail Time Four Hours
Price $126 for first person, $21 each additional person ($120, $20 Respectively With Cash Discount).
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

Come visit the little known studio of a nationally recognized artist hidden deep within the Smoky Mountains. This walk travels through second growth forest to a hidden gem for those interested in history or art. We´ll begin in an area wrought with controversy; learning about the logging history of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Our journey continues on an old road bed, past the old vacation cottages to a beautiful,hidden cabin built in the 1850s. Bring your walking shoes and a sketch book for this journey into art history.

Rating: For a Half Day this is Moderate.

Title of Walk THE ROAD LESS TRAVELED
Trail Time Four Hours
Price $130 for first person, $22 each additional person ($124, $21 Respectively With Cash Discount).
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

Take the road less traveled on this off trail adventure. The journey begins rather tamely as we start on a low elevation, but little used trail. We´ll walk along a beautiful, roaring stream, then view it from above before the trail winds along next to it again. Old fence posts and even telephone poles give us evidence of past use of this land. We´ll travel by the sites of CCC camps and visit an old cemetery before breaking away from the road bed to cross former fields and streams on our adventure to the hidden ruins of the mysterious rock house.

Rating: For a Half Day this is Moderate.

Title of Walk TURNING BACK THE CLOCK
Trail Time Four Hours
Price $50 or $48 With Cash Discount (Includes Snacks)*
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

This walk is the "Stroll Back in Time"… and beyond. We will walk through a forest recovering from man's impact. While walking along this lovely wide trail, we will see how people used their ingenuity to live off the land. The trail is wide, paralleling a gorgeous and pristine mountain stream. Explore a small family cemetery, a 19th century barn, spring-house and restored cabin. The trail narrows as we leave all signs of human activity when we enter a doorway to a rare world of old growth trees. See trees that were here when the Cherokee inhabited this beautiful land. On this charming trail, we'll see plants that are found nowhere else on earth, and stop by a gentle cascade.

This walk is a spring wildflower show-case in April and May.

Rating: For a Half Day this is Moderate.

Title of Walk HIDDEN WATERFALL ADVENTURE
Trail Time Four Hours
Price $55 or $52 With Cash Discount (Includes Snacks)*
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

Shangri-la awaits you on this walk! The Smokies are famous for their waterfalls. We'll take you to visit one of the more secluded ones in the Park. Our walk takes us through a beautiful forest of oaks, maples and hemlocks as we make your way on this quiet trail. We'll take a short side trail to visit an unnamed family cemetery from the 1800's. Continue on to nature's artwork of sandstone rock layered over veins of smoky quartz. Listen for the distant sound of rushing water as we approach the hidden waterfall. We'll enjoy the peace and beauty of the layered falls and explore the crystal clear pools for salamanders and other aquatic life.

Rating: For a Half Day this is Moderate to Strenuous.

Title of Walk SCENIC RIVER WALK
Trail Time Four Hours
Price $47 or $45 With Cash Discount (Includes Snacks)*
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

This walk takes place in an area rich with human history, controversy and scenic beauty. The trail is a wide, gentle grade that parallels the misnamed Little River with its dramatic and scenic white water and cascades. Our walk will be peppered with several stops along the way as we learn about the plants, animals, geology and rich human history of this special region.

Rating: For a Half Day this is Easy.

Title of Walk INSPIRATION POINT EXCURSION
Trail Time Four Hours
Price $52 or $50 With Cash Discount (Includes Snacks)*
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

Walk along a beautiful mountain stream through an old growth forest. Climb up the side of one of the most picturesque mountains, experiencing incredible views of artistic rock formations. Picnic on a beautiful rock outcropping surrounded by blueberry bushes, mountain laurel and plants found only on Southern Appalachian Heath Balds, while basking in the views of the mountains below. We may even get a glimpse of the Peregrine Falcons that nest near by. This walk is moderate, and takes place on a very popular trail.

Rating: For a Half Day this is Moderate.

Title of Walk APPALACHIAN BALD TREK
Trail Time Four Hours
Price $58 or $55 With Cash Discount (Includes Snacks)*
Upcoming Dates
This walk is offered May - October
Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

Your guided walk begins in the busy Clingman’s Dome Parking lot. Leave the crowds behind as we walk through the Southernmost extent of a forest found 1,000 miles north of Tennessee. On a clear day you will marvel at the sea of mountains, beautiful Flame Azaleas in the summertime, and an artist’s palette of colors in the fall, while enjoying a nice respite on a beautiful Appalachian bald.

Rating: For a Half Day this is Moderate.

Title of Walk BIRDING TOUR
Program Time Four Hours
Price $158 for first person, $21 each additional person ($150, $20 Respectively With Cash Discount).
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

Spend a morning with an expert birder and learn everything you need to know about the wonderful world of birding! We'll cover the basics of binoculars, field guides, checklists, and CD's, and then learn the simple steps to identifying birds, including using our ears. Explore various habitats to discover species from Wood Thrush to Veery, Yellow-throated Warbler to Black-throated Blue. Resident birds are common, but so too the many colorful visitors from the tropics settling in to raise families in the Smokies. Along the way we'll discuss the miracle of flight and other bird traits, have a hands-on look at a collection of bird nests, and offer ways to attract birds to your yard.

Rating: For a Half Day this is Moderate with Difficult spots.

Title of Walk SALAMANDER FORAY:
Program Time Four Hours
Price $158 for first person, $21 each additional person ($150, $20 Respectively With Cash Discount).
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

Come discover why the Smokies are known as the Salamander Capital of the World. The Smokies have over 30 known species of salamanders in the Smokies more than anywhere else in the world. Spend time visiting different forest communities in the Park, observing and capturing salamanders in their native habitats, and learning the role of these animals in forest ecosystems. We will also discuss the unique life histories of these complex creatures. The beauty and diversity of Smoky Mountain salamanders will amaze you. We have captured at least 12 species during previous programs.

Rating: For a Half Day this is Moderate.

Full Day Walks. Already have some experience in hiking in the mountains? Ready for total immersion? Than a Full Day Walk might be right for you. These walks cover more miles and often cover more rugged terrain than our half day walks.
Title of Walk WOODLAND WANDER
Trail Time Five to Six Hours
Price $68 or $65 With Cash Discount (Includes Snacks)*
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

Walk along an old logging road while passing old homesteads, cascades and small waterfalls before we turn off onto a quiet woodland path. The path is a gentle trail, thick with Eastern Hemlocks and magnolias. Plenty of small stream crossings pepper our walk as we explore this relatively new forest. We’ll learn about the important plants that protect the diversity of these streams and discover the amazing aquatic life that calls these waterways home. We finish our walk through a ghost town, the site of an ongoing controversy.

Rating: For a Full Day this is Easy to Moderate.

Title of Walk QUIET WATERFALL STROLL
Trail Time Five to Six Hours
Price $63 or $60 With Cash Discount (Includes Snacks)*
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

Take a peaceful stroll through a less traveled area of the Park, past some old settler's homesteads, the remains of gigantic Chestnut trees, to a pleasant waterfall. Listen to Cherokee lore and area history while learning about yesterday's and today's natural medicines and foods.

Rating: For a Full Day this is Moderate.

Title of Walk MOUNTAIN WONDERLAND WALK
Trail Time Six Hours
Price $68 or $65 With Cash Discount (Includes Snacks)*
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

Walk along a beautiful mountain stream through an old growth forest. Climb up the side of one of the most picturesque mountains, experiencing incredible views of artistic rock formations. Rest on a spot heavy with mountain history, starting with a geological anomaly to the tale of the first Cherokee to discover the bluff, to its importance during the Civil War. This guided walk is along a very popular trail, one often referred to as the most scenic in the Park.

Rating: For a Full Day this is Moderate with a couple of Difficult spots.

Title of Walk BIRDING TOUR FULL DAY
Program Time Seven to Eight Hours
Price $263 for first person, $26 each additional person ($250, $25 Respectively With Cash Discount)
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

After this experience, you may never take a walk again without enjoying the wonder of birds even in your own backyard! We'll cover the basics of binoculars, field guides, checklists, and CD's, and then learn the simple steps to identifying birds, including using our ears. We'll start our short walks at low elevation, then carpool to mid and high elevation habitats to discover other species from Wood Thrush to Veery, from Yellow-throated Warbler to Black-throated Blue. Resident birds are common, but so too the many colorful visitors from the tropics settling in to raise families in the Smokies. Along the way we'll discuss the miracle of flight and other bird traits, have a hands-on look at a collection of bird nests, and offer ways to attract birds to your yard.

Rating: For a Full Day this is Moderate.

 

One Hour Walks. These walks are great for those with special needs, young children, strollers or pets.
Title of Walk INTRO TO SMOKIES
Trail Time One Hour
Price $21 or $20 With Cash Discount*
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

This easy and level paved trail is a great introduction to the beauty and human history of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Chimneys and rock walls give us clues to the earlier history of the Sugarlands area. The paved walking trail is one of the few in the Park that is stroller and wheel chair friendly.

Rating: For a One Hour walk this is Easy.

Title of Walk COVE FOREST OUTING
Trail Time One Hour
Price $25 or $24 With Cash Discount*
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

The Great Smoky Mountains National park is home to 90% of the Old Growth Forest left in the Eastern United States. Come take a guided nature walk in one such place. This forest is a beautiful example of a forest found only in these mountains and nowhere else on earth. On this walk, you’ll see first hand why maintaining old growth forests are important to preserve. See plants and trees found only in these Southern Appalachian mountains, learn not only to recognize them, but what the native people used for foods and medicines.

Rating: For a One Hour walk this is Moderate for Difficult spots.

Title of Walk NATURALISTS AMBLE
Trail Time One Hour
Price $24 or $22 With Cash Discount*
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description

This gentle trail is reminiscent of a hobbit garden. Wildflowers, moss, gentle mountain streams and ferns will keep us busy on this gentle walking trail, with their beauty and diversity. Half buried walls and chimneys give us a glimpse of the area’s recent past, offering a perfect view of nature’s amazing ability to recover.

Rating: For a one hour walk this is Easy to Moderate.

Title of Walk POOCH AND PAL TREK
Trail Time One Hour
Price $25 or $24 With Cash Discount*
Upcoming Dates Call for schedule (865) 436-8283 or request walk online
Description Most trails in the Smokies are for us 2-leggeds only, this one is a beautiful exception. Leaving right out of Gatlinburg, it is a convenient and easy walking trail along a lovely river. The walk provides enough smells to keep your furry four legged dog friend interested, while providing you a chance for a pleasant respite from the crowds. We’ll learn about the importance of Hemlock forests, and other water-loving trees, while enjoying the sounds of the river and cascades.

Rating: For a One Hour walk this is Easy.

* Prices based on two person minimum. Customers traveling alone can join groups and pay the stated rate, but solo customers going out alone must pay for two.
Looking for a greater challenge? Please visit our Hikes page.
Please call: 865-436-8283 or e-mail for reservations and more information.

A Walk in the Woods is in our 16th year of business. In that time we have safely helped over 61,000 people enjoy the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

We are permitted through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and insured. We are certified in Wilderness First Responder, Professional Level CPR and Non-Lethal Aversive Bear Conditioning.

 

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