Length: 6.5 miles
This 6.5-mile lower creek trail begins by following a stream along a gravel road for a couple of miles and then passes several restored farm houses. This trail begins on Caldwell Fork Trail. The middle section of the trail becomes a narrow footpath, travels through impressive forest to a side ridge, and follows a wide railroad grade for several miles to Polls Gap (indicated on older maps as Paul’s Gap). The trail near Polls Gap is very gradual and makes a wonderful, short day hike. There is no water after Campsite #40.
Directions: Take exit 20 off I-40 (Cove Creek) and travel west on NC 276 turn right on Cove Creek road. Stay on Cove Creek Rd. for 6 miles. This will take you 2 miles beyond park boundary. Turn left on Cataloochee Road, go 3.1 miles. Trail will be on the left.