horses in Cades Cove

Top 3 Areas to Take Amazing Pictures in Cades Cove

abrams falls
February 11, 2022

Cades Cove is one of the most visited places in the Smoky Mountains, but it is also one of the most scenic areas! From forested areas to hiking trails to open meadows, you’re bound to find a location for some beautiful photo opportunities. Here are the best four places to take amazing pictures in Cades Cove:

1. Abrams Falls

Abrams Falls is one of the most popular spots in Cades Cove. In order to find Abrams Falls, you’ll have to travel a little under 5 miles along the Cades Cove Loop. You’ll then turn down a gravel road and drive through a field to the parking lot. A 2.6 mile hike over two foot bridges and following along Abrams Creek will lead you to the waterfall. Keep your eyes and camera out for Cades Cove’s animal residents like black bears, white-tailed deer, and even otters! Although it is only a 20-foot waterfall, visitors are fascinated by the amount of water that flows from Abrams Falls into a deep pool within the creek below. One of the best times to go to Abrams Falls for pictures is during the fall. You’ll be able to capture a picture of the falls with gorgeous fall foliage in the background!

2. Sparks Lane & Hyatt Lane

Hyatt LaneTwo roads that connect opposite sides of Cades Cove Loop Road are Sparks Lane and Hyatt Lane. If you want a more open view for pictures in Cades Cove, these roads are a perfect choice. As you travel Sparks and Hyatt Lanes, you can take in the sights of large meadows and the Smokies! These are some of the best locations to take pictures of spring wildflowers and fall foliage. Also, being in this area will give you wildlife photo opportunities. Another perk of using these roads is that you don’t have to walk or bike the whole loop! You can use them both as shortcuts to get from one side of Cades Cove Loop Road to the other. Sparks Lane would make your Cades Cove trip 4 miles; taking Hyatt Lane would make it 8 miles.

3. Rich Mountain Loop Trail

If you take the Rich Mountain Loop Trail, you’ll have access to historic buildings, abundant wildflowers, and a “secret” waterfall! You’ll find the entrance for the trail shortly after entering Cades Cove. This is a trail for more experienced hikers, so keep that in mind if you choose to take this route. Feel free to stop for photos within the first 2 miles of Rich Mountain Loop Trail, especially during the spring. You’ll be able to see the John Oliver Cabin as well as several different wildflowers like violets, mountain laurels, and flame azaleas! Finally, have your camera ready to take pictures of the old Rich Mountain Fire Tower and the 25-foot Crooked Arm Falls right off Crooked Arm Ridge Trail before you complete the full hike.

Now that you know about where you can take some great pictures in Cades Cove, you can plan your next visit to the area! Want to stay overnight? Learn more about camping at the Cades Cove Campground!

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