I went back to Great Smoky Mountains National Park today to finish what I had started two weeks ago; namely my hike of the Old Settlers Trail. This time I would head into the Greenbrier section of the park. It was a part of the national park I had never been to before. I turned off of US highway 321 and entered into a pleasant landscape of trees and cascading water. Slowly I made my way to the small parking area at the trailhead for the Old Settlers Trail near a bridge that crosses over the Little Pigeon River.
The trail started off in a river bottom area with a few interesting rock outcroppings. The trail ascended, then turned away from the river on an old road. I followed the old road for a short distance until I found an unmarked trail leading off through a low area that looked like it occasionally floods. The well-trodden, though unofficial trail then followed an old road up a hill to an old cemetery.
Once back on the trail I followed old roads quite often. While this part of the Old Settlers Trail did not seem to have as many vestiges of habitation as the other section I had hiked, there were some rock walls lining some of the old roads I followed.
After I had finished my snack I hit the trail again. I followed the old road back to the Old Settlers Trail. The trail led through some old fields, now returning to forest. Soon I found a hand painted sign and a blazed trail (not authorized by the NPS I'm sure) that led up to the Green Cemetery.
The trail led to an intersection with another old road. I was curious and so I followed the road to an unofficial, but well maintained trail. Not knowing where this trail led I returned to the official Old Settlers Trail. This half of the trail definitely did not offer as many glimpses of old chimneys as the other half. I did find an old wash basin,
23 hours ago