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About the Valley

Welcome to the January 2008 issue of About the Valley. This is the first issue of the new year and we hope it is a happy one for you and your family. When you are planning a visit to the Smoky Mountains this year, there are many beautiful things to enjoy in the mountains. This issue is all about the waterfalls in the Smoky Mountains.

Waterfalls are located on most every stream. All but one waterfall, Meigs Falls, requires hiking. Here are some popular waterfalls you won’t want to miss. Before you start out on a hike to a popular waterfall, check for detailed directions and safety tips at www.nps.gov/grsm/planyourvisit/waterfalls.htm.



ABRAMS FALLS

Abrams Falls, at only 20 feet high, has the largest water volume of any waterfall in the park. The trail begins in the back of Cades Code Loop Road, past stop #10. The hike round trip is 5 miles and it is of moderate difficulty.

CHASTEEN CREEK

This is a small waterfall. This is a hike out of the Smokemont Campground, 4 miles round trip. The difficulty is moderate.

GROTTO FALLS

To reach this waterfall, you hike on Trillium Gap Trail through a hemlock forest, off the Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail. The moderate hike is 2.4 miles round trip. This is the only waterfall in the park that you can walk behind.

HEN WALLOW FALLS

The trailhead to this waterfall is near the Cosby Campground, south of Cosby, Tennessee. This is a 90-foot waterfall that is only 2 feet wide at the top but fans out to 20 feet at the bottom. The 4.4 mile round trip hike on Gabes Mountain Trail is considered moderate in difficulty.

JUNEY WHANK FALLS

This waterfall is divided into the upper and lower sections and together they drop 90 feet from top to bottom. The Juney Whank Falls Trail to this waterfall begins near the end of Deep Creek Road near Deep Creek Campground. This moderate hike is only 0.8 miles round trip.

INDIAN CREEK/TOMS BRANCH FALLS

This moderate 1.5 mile hike will allow you to enjoy two waterfalls in the Deep Creek area. As you walk the Deep Creek Trail to the junction with Indian Creek Trail, you can see elegant Tom Branch Falls on the far side of Deep Creek. At the junction with Indian Creek Trail, a right turn will take you to Indian Creek Falls. The falls are 25 feet in height.

LAUREL FALLS

This is the easiest waterfall hike on the Tennessee side of the park. The easy to moderate hike is 2.6 miles round trip. The paved trail, Laurel Falls Trail, cuts through the middle of several cascades. Laurel Falls is 80 feet high.

RAINBOW FALLS

A rainbow produced by the mist from this waterfall can be seen on sunny afternoons. Rainbow Falls plunges 80 feet, the highest single plunge of water in the park. The trail offers a challenge, 5.5 miles round trip and moderate to strenuous in difficulty. The Rainbow Falls Trail continues for approximately 4 miles beyond the falls to the summit of Mt. Le Conte.

RAMSAY CASCADES

The trailhead for this hike begins in the Greenbrier Area. This hike along Ramsay Cascades Trail is 8.0 miles round trip and is considered strenuous. This waterfall is the tallest in the park and one of the most spectacular. Water drops 100 feet over rock outcroppings and collects in a small pool.

MEIGS FALLS

You can drive to this waterfall. The pulloff to view Meigs Falls is along Little River Road, 13 miles west of Sugarlands Visitor Center. The falls is located on the far side of Little River.

PLACE OF A THOUSAND DRIPS

This is another waterfall you can reach by car. The name comes from the water that splits into numerous small channels cascading around rocks and creating “a thousand drips.” To reach the falls, turn at traffic #8 on the parkway in Gatlinburg and follow Historic Nature Trail into the park. Take Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail to stop #15.

CABIN NEWS

After almost 4 years, we have sold Laurel Glen cabin. We hope you enjoyed your visits to Laurel Glen. Pine Cone Lodge is still on our program and we hope you’ll consider it for you next vacation. With 4 bedrooms and 4½ baths, Pine Cone Lodge is spacious but cozy. You and your friends and family will enjoy many activities at the cabin—pool table, XBox 360 video game, board games, card games, hot tub, outdoor fire pit, movies, outdoor fireplace. Plans have started for another new cabin for our program, one that will have all the features and amenities you have come to expect from Chestnut Ridge Cabins.

 

CARAMEL BROWNIES

1 stick margarine, softened

2/3 cup canned evaporated milk

1 box German chocolate cake mix

1 (14 oz) bag Kraft caramels

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. With mixer, blend margarine, 1/3 cup evaporated milk, and dry cake mix together. Batter will be thick. Spread half the batter onto greased 9-by-13 inch pan. Bake 6 minutes. In microwave bowl, combine 1/3 cup evaporated milk and unwrapped caramels. Microwave on high for 2 minutes. Stir and repeat until caramels are melted and mixture is smooth. Pour mixture on top of cooked brownies and sprinkle with 1 cup chocolate chips. Spoon remaining cake batter over top of chips and bake 18 minutes more.&nbs! p; Cool and cut. Yields 15 servings.

IF YOU ARE PLANNING A TRIP TO THE SMOKY MOUNTAINS, PLEASE CONSIDER STAYING AT PINE CONE LODGE. THE COMFORT AND CONVENIENCE OF THIS CABIN MAKE YOUR VACATION MORE FUN! CHECK AVAILABILITY AND RESERVE YOUR DATES EARLY -- MANY RESERVATIONS ARE MADE WEEKS AHEAD.

If you are interested in owning a vacation home or rental home in the beautiful Smoky Mountains, we are offering Pine Cone Lodge for sale. For purchase information, contact Timbercreek Realty & Cabin Rentals, 3121 Wears Valley Road, Sevierville, TN 37862, 1-800-837-7022, or visit www.timbercreekcabins.com. For a brochure describing Pine Cone Lodge, e-mail us at chestnut_ridge_cabins@comcast.net for more information.



Thanks for subscribing to About the Valley. We look forward to bringing you more news next month. As always, if you have any questions or comments or want to share your favorite place to visit in the Smoky Mountains, e-mail us at chestnut_ridge_cabins@comcast.net.

Chestnut Ridge Cabins