What to Bring When Hiking the Smoky Mountains


This week I am going on a much needed vacation with my family. It is our now annual trip and we are heading to the Smoky Mountains. Today I am sharing some tips of what to bring when hiking in the Smoky Mountains.

Last year in October, I went to the Smoky Mountains for the first time. Even though I am born a city girl, I am a small town girl at heart. I always wanted to go and see the Smoky Mountains. When we got the rental car and started to drive thought the Smoky Mountains National Park, it took my breath away. Rows upon rows of gorgeous trees and fall foliage. The air was fresh and crisp with the smell of the tress. The whole pace was like a postcard. It was unreal. One of best things to do in the Smoky Mountain National Park, is to hike it. Here is the scoop.

At the base of the Smoky Mountains there are lots of streams and pretty trails to walk through. But if you want to get to the really good stuff where the thick of the fall foliage and the scenic views are, you have to go up. We went hiking up a long trail to one side of the mountain and got to behold this view.


Yeah (photography skills lol). Showstopper right there. “Life’s a climb but the view is worth it”. So what are the must haves to bring to see such views?

  1. Proper Shoes – Ladies I know like me you love cute OTK boots and booties but that will not cut it for hiking. At the base of the mountain, I would wear my boots when we are just walking but when it came time for hiking, I brought out my Nike’s. You do not have to wear Nike’s maybe you are more of a fan of another brand but the shoe must be fitted around your foot. You do not want anything that is a regular walking shoes or something loose. You want something fitted that curves tight around your feet, because there is a lot of steep places and some slippery places too. My Nike Darts were perfect because they were super fitted around my feet and gave me the flexibility to walk and climb up a waterfall even. Hiking Boots are great if you are really planning on going high up and hiking a lot, but for most of the trails, it is too heavy of a shoe and it is still warmish in the fall in the Smoky Mountains. Here is a link to the shoes I have and they were perfect for steep climbing. Click here

2. Backpack – This seems like a given but purses or crossbody just won’t do. Be careful not to overload yourself when packing the backpack. Also buy a backpack that can get wet just in case. Some other tips is to take some water and snacks. Snacks that are protein are best because sugar in your blood is not good being elevated high and a walking up skinny trails. Hiking can be a mild exercise but an exercise nevertheless. Messing with your blood sugar can make you lightheaded especially higher up.

3. Camera Bag – This also seems obvious but with a nice camera you don’t want your camera banging around when you’re hiking. I carried my little amateur camera in my hand and it was annoying when climbing. If you don’t need a backpack either at least carry a good camera bag. Best Buy has some really good ones (here is mine that I use for my Cannon)  but I’m sure you can get them lots of places.

4. Bear Spray. Ok we only saw bears once and we were very much out of reach to them. It is the Smoky Mountains National Park so it is their territory. Early morning hikes seem like a good idea to get that sunrise but maybe rethink it because they are out a lot during that time. If you do go, bring some bear spray just in case. Don’t try to feed them for real duh lol. Bear Spray is actually a little hard to find around where I live but I got it at a Bass Pro Shop (click here for that)  and they have some on Amazon. Check local stores or order online in advanced. It’s expensive but so worth it.

Stay Tuned for more on my trip this week by following me on Instagram @naomi.noel. I will be doing Instagram Stories as well. Of course when I  come back, I will be doing a recap on my travel page here.  We have some fun places to visit and some beautiful pictures to take!

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Love, Naomi Noel



16 thoughts on “What to Bring When Hiking the Smoky Mountains

  1. I think this is the first I’ve heard of bear spray. I can’t believe I have never been hiking, but I have always wanted to! I bet you are going to have an amazing time especially with that view.

  2. What a great round up! I didn’t even know there was such a a thing as bear spray! Your trips to the mountains sound amazing! Enjoy your time this year 🙂

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