I took this photo along the trail that leads to Grotto Falls in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park near Gatlinburg, Tennessee. This trail is not far from the Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail and is a moderate trail to walk for hikers. The trail leading to Grotto Falls is about 1.5 miles (nearly 3 miles roundtrip) and is easy to navigate. Along the trail, there are four stream crossings which have no bridge access, but it is easy to step on the stones an navigate through or over the rushing streams (the rocks can be slippery!). This photo was taken somewhere in the middle between the Grotto Falls and the trailhead. The photo below is almost the same photo, but the sunset is a bit more centered. I liked them both, so I figured I might at well post both of them!
After leaving the trailhead, the drive back was absolutely spectacular. The sun was getting lower in the sky, changing the hues of the tree tops, then lower towards the ground. While taking the one way road back towards Gatlinburg, I pulled over in a parking area and walked across the street where I found a beautiful Smoky Mountains river covered in lush green moss in an area untouched by the autumn lurking above.
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Smoky Mountains Grotto Falls Trail at Sunset by Joey B. Lax-Salinas is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at http://www.joeyblsphotography.com.