Hiking the Great Smoky Mountains – Backpacking Trip – 3 Days, 57 miles

Join me for a 3 day, 57 mile backpacking loop through the Smokies. GPS data at

Trailhead: Lakeview Drive, +35° 27′ 26.32″, -83° 31′ 35.75″

Trails Used, in order:

Day 1 (20.5 miles)
Begin at Lakeview Tunnel at the end of the “Road to Nowhere”
Benton MacKaye Trail / Lakeshore Trail
Bear Creek Trail
Welch Ridge Trail
High Rocks Vista – Great views of Fontana Lake!
Cold Spring Gap Trail
Hazel Creek Trail
End at Backcountry Campsite 82

Day 2 (24.5 Miles)
Hazel Creek Trail
Lakeshore Trail / Benton MacKaye Trail
End at Backcountry Campsite 76

Day 3 (12 Miles)
Lake Shore Trail / Benton MacKaye Trail
End at Lakeview Drive (Road to Nowhere) Trailhead and the Car!

Downloadable GPS Data at

Season: Early Summer (First week of June)

Detailed Gear List to follow in separate video,

but here’s the major items:

Osprey Hornet 46 Backpack
Hennessey Hammock – Expedition A-Sym
Sea to Summit Toaster – Fleece Sleeping Bag Liner (used as primary bag)
Klymit Inertia X-Frame Sleeping Pad

13 pounds Base Weight – Still working on that Ultralight Backpacking System!

Link to National Park Service Map:

Nat Geo Map Used

All content, including video, music and sound effects, are original works created by myself, Sintax77.

Source link


  • 8 years ago I was being forced to hike a 50 miler in Yellowstone with the scouts and was dreading it…until I saw this video. Something about you enjoying the outdoors lit a spark. I am an avid backpacker to this day. I watch this video every year or so to remember to put me back in the magic

  • Ancestral homelands of the Cherokee Indian Nation, currently and before forced removal to Indian territory/ settler state of Oklahoma before the genocidal based, colonial US government forced them away for settlers with their racism, hate and intolerance, like the cowards they are on the trail of tears, along with their (shamefully so, however) slaves and other Indian nations citizens.

  • I just realized that campsite 82, the one you stayed at the first night, is the same campsite where a camper was killed by a bear in September of 2020.

  • I have really enjoyed this video, and now I will watch more. I am the most unlikely viewer for your videos, and yet, here I am. I am a 74 year old Tennessee gal who owns a cedar chalet in Pigeon Forge, TN. We have owned that place since 1987, and years ago, I took one or two day hikes in the Smokies. Now I mostly hike the killer hills around my own cabin. I am not one to camp or sleep out in the wilds; I like my hot tub, and electric tea kettle, heat, and a/c, but I have enjoyed your trips vicariously. I just happened on you one night on my Roku TV when I awoke way too early, and one of your vids popped on the screen. Again, I would not have done your sort of hikes even when I was younger, and certainly not now, but I do love the Smokies. You did mention the smoke on the mountains; as I understand it, it is because of all the vegetation in the Smokies letting off oxygen, I guess, The Indians called it "The Land of the Great Smoke;" hence the Smokies. Thanks for your vids. I did find myself wondering where your camera was and how you get such good clips of yourself walking. I will watch more of your trips, and enjoy them while I am snug in my bed! Good job, to get someone like I interested in a backpacking video!

  • Campsite 82 in the Hazel Creek area is the campsite that a hiker was camping at when he sadly was attacked and killed by a bear last fall (2020) as of this reply the autopsy hasn't yet determined whether hiker died from other causes or the attack. Be safe out there.

  • I like to go trail running, but I don’t see how anyone runs in Bear or Mountain Lion. SLOW & steady I would go. Any trail runners doing Big Predator terrain?

  • 15:24 I like the phrase "accidental history" as it is both accurate and funny. 🙂

  • What an amazing trip. Rain or shine, you always have a good time. 🤠 Im a poet who doesn't know it. Ha! 🤓

  • Good morning Shawn 👍🏻👍🏻 I was in the mood for a good hiking adventure so I had to watch one of your videos. I always enjoy watching your adventures from the past and looking forward to seeing your next Wilderness hiking adventure. I hope all is well with you and your family, enjoy and have a Great week !!! Danny 👍🏻

  • at 22:51 those were wild hogs..seen bunches when I lived at the Nantahala Outdoor Center…spent most of my free time in the woods..Hiking or trout fishing, climbing…love that area…nice job on the video… really enjoyed it …you should learn to fly fish..fresh trout in the mountains is as good as it gets…keep up the good work! PEACE!

  • If your were backpacking on May 30th that is my birthday

  • Thank you for sharing beautiful place

  • Would have loved to see that burger!

  • Impressive 20+ miles in a day while filming. Good editing!

  • Why do you have to talk? We can see what you are doing.

  • thanks for a great video 77 !

  • He’s really in Sasquatch territory.

  • Do you have a favor boot? I was reading the other day an article about hiking shoes, trail running shoes, and hiking boots and the effects of weight on your feet.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.