Results 1-3of 3 Reviews
Charlotte, North Carolina
July 10, 2012
July 9, 2006
From journal A Natural Beauty
East Liverpool, Ohio
September 16, 2005
We started first thing in the morning with cameras, a video camera, backpacks, water, and trail mix. It was a beautiful morning with snow in the higher elevations, but it was melted at most of the lower elevations. The trail starts off fairly easily, but it quickly moves to a steep climb that continues to the top. I recommend getting a book that tells you exactly what to expect on the trail because much of the history could be missed by someone not being aware of it. The trail to Rainbow Falls is part of a much longer trail going all the way to Le Conte Lodge--the only lodge in the park. It is a strenuous climb there is no doubt about that, but it is a very beautiful climb. We saw deer, squirrels and many birds along the way. Once at the top you see the whole reason for the climb. Rainbow Falls is the highest single plunge in the Smoky Mountains. Although my family was enamored by the falls I found several squirrels who seem to live in the rocks around the Falls. One in particular stood out because he was very light tan color with red eyes. The squirrels are very friendly and almost seem to pose for pictures.
At the top of the climb there was still snow around the rocks and ground, but it was a comfortable temperature with a coat on.
Prepare for temperature differences in the bottom and top of the hike- as I said there was no snow at the bottom of the Rainbow Falls trail, but there was at the top. When we hiked it the temperature dropped probably 15 degrees on the hike.
Wear appropriate shoes--I don't understand people trying to hike a trail like Rainbow Falls rated moderate to strenuous in flip-flops. It makes my feet hurt just thinking about it.
Bring plenty of water and a snack--water is a definite must for this climb. The snack may be an option, but even with a good breakfast by the time you get to the top it's time for some kind of snack.
Most of all--enjoy the scenery. I still now complain about the hike to Rainbow Falls, but I cannot deny the fact that it was absolutely beautiful on that whole trip. The trees, flowers, animals, and water on the trip leave options for many, many beautiful pictures and memories of a park that reflect the beauty and history of our country.
From journal The Great Smoky Mountains