Smoky Mountain South Area - Swim near Beersheba Springs, Tennessee
Beersheba Springs,Tennessee
35.4517, -85.6206
GPS: 35°27'6.1"N 85°37'14.2"W
Maps | Directions
State: Tennessee


Swimming places very close to the southwestern end of Great Smoky Mtn. N. P...Courtesy of

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  2. Travel & camp on durable surfaces
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From Beersheba Springs, Tennessee

  1. Head southwest on Dahlgren Ave toward Hege Ave (164 ft)
  2. Turn left onto Hege Ave (0.1 mi)
  3. Continue onto Stone Door Rd (413 ft)
  4. Turn left onto Grassy Ridge Rd
    Partial restricted usage road
    (1.2 mi)

From Knoxville, go south on RT 129 through Maryville and Tallassee to Chilhowee. Continue on RT 129, then:

ABRAMS CREEK CAMPGROUND [ABRC]: A developed but small Great Smoky Mtn. National Park campground, accessible by car from the southern end of the park, along Abrams Creek. There are several places to wade/swim in the creek and it looks like a great tubing place for short runs. One deep hole is right inside the entrance to the campground. PHOTO . Park at the campground entrance information sign, where it says only campers cars past this point. Walk past that point along the road and you will very shortly see a deep. easily accessible hole in the creek. The coordinates here are: LAT, LON: lat=35.60957, lon=-83.93536(source: measured) (accuracy: exact). LINK TO GOOGLE MAP . To get here, from Chilhowee continue east on RT 129 then turn northeast (left) on Happy Valley Rd.. Follow this road to signs for the Abrams Creek Campground. Verified 7/2003. Very confident. Updated 7/2003.

LITTLE BOTTOMS [LITT]: Little Bottoms is a trail which connects Abrams Falls (see SMOKY MOUNTAIN - CENTRAL AREA - ABRAMS FALLS swimming hole) with the Abrams Creek Campground and follows Abrams Creek. It looks to be about a 5 mile hike, each way, between Abrams Falls and Abrams Creek Campground. At about halfway between Abrams Falls and Abrams Creek Campground on this trail, there is a huge, sprawling, backpacker's primitive camp area (no facilities, no auto access), beside Abrams Creek. There are said to be several good size swimming holes in the creek here. LAT, LON: lat=35.6154, lon=-83.9115(source: DeLorme) (accuracy: general area). LINK TO GOOGLE MAP Not verified. Pretty confident. Updated 7/2003.

WILDCAT FALLS [WILD]: Three falls close together in Slickrock Creek with a crystal clear swimming hole at the bottom. Looks to be about a 7 mile hike each way. LINK TO PHOTO 1 , LINK TO PHOTO 2 .Not really in Great Smoky Mtn. N. P. but nearby in Cherokee N. F., Slickrock Wilderness Area (right on the TN/NC state line) . To get there from Chilhowee, take RT 129 east to where it makes a sharp left turn near the Cheoah Dam. From near here, find Forest Trail #42 and follow it along the Tennessee River and up the Slickrock Creek to Wildcat Falls. (If you drive a bit further to Tapoco, there appears to be a trail from here that goes up to join Trail #42 on Slickrock Creek but I don't know the number of this trail and, while it may be shorter, it may be quite steep.). LAT, LON: lat=35.4274, lon=-83.9993(source: Topozone) (accuracy: approximate). LINK TO GOOGLE MAP , WILDCAT FALLS PHOTO

A whole other approach to Wildcat Falls from further south (requiring less hiking) is: From Knoxville take I-75 south to RT 68. Take RT 68 south to Tellico Plains, about 35 mi. (See nearby "BABY FALLS" swimming hole). In Tellico Plains, take RT 165 (Indian Boundary Rd.) east to the vicinity of Indian Boundary Lake where you will come to an intersection of several roads. Here, take FR 35 past Indian Boundary lake and campground, continue onto FR 35-1 to Double Camp Campground, then take FR 59 to where it makes a very sharp turn to the left (or right, I think). Here is a parking area (parking for the Big Fat Gap trailhead) and a number of trails. Two ways to go from here: 1) Take trail #106 to the east to trail #42 which goes south along Slickrock Creek to Wildcat Falls. (May be the shorter route - about 2 miles.) 2) Take trail #95 southeast then trail #139 southeast then trail #42 north along Slickrock Creek to Wildcat Falls. Not verified. Pretty confident. Updated 7/2003

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