Tag Archives: Finley Cane Trail

Finley Cane Trail

Date:    April 23, 2016

Miles:  2.6 miles           Elevation Gain:  259↑ **        Elev./Mi:   99       Grade:       2%          

Difficulty:  Class 1      Hiking Time: 0:57       Pace:  2.73  mph         Avg. Temp.:   63        

Section:  Cades Cove  

** This section was documented from Bote Mountain Trail, descending to the trailhead at Laurel Creek Road.  From the trailhead up, the elevation gain is 459 ft., Elevation/mile is 176 at a 3% grade.

Finley Cane Map  Finley Cane Elevation

The trailhead for Finley Cane Trail is on Laurel Creek Road, 5.5 miles from the Townsend “Y”.  It is shared with Lead Cove and Turkey Pen Ridge Trails providing the 900 miler with several options for loop hikes.  This section was hike a part of a loop with Lead Cove to Bote Mountain and is documented from Bote Mountain Trail.  There is ample water along the path with several creek crossings.  The closest campsite is about 0.9 miles from the Bote Mountain intersection down West Prong Trail to CS #18.

From Bote Mountain Trail, the path is level to a slight incline for the first 0.4 miles, then descending to Finley Cove Creek at 1.0 miles.  The creek is typically dry in the summer.  Flowing Finley Cove Creek, there is a slight rise and then a pleasant descent to Hickory Tree Branch and Laurel Cove Creek, two crossing that occur at 2.0 miles.  This section passes through mixed hardwoods, some of which are remnants of virgin timber forests.  The gentle descent continues on the the trail head at 2.6 miles at Laurel Creek Road.

Finley Cane Data Book

HikerHead 2  Strider Out…

Lead Cove – Finley Cane Loop Hike

Date: April 23, 2016

Miles: 7.5 miles           Elevation Gain:   1,555   ↑         Elev./Mi:   207         Grade:  4%          

Difficulty:  Class 3        Hiking Time: 2:48       Pace:  2.7  mph            Avg. Temp.:  72        

Section:  Cades Cove     

Lead Cove - Finley Cane LoopThis is a good, moderately difficult loop that is easy to get to.  The trailhead is on Laurel Creek Road, 5.5 miles from the Townsend “Y”. This trailhead is where several trails meet in the section including both Lead Cove and Finely Cane as well as Turkey Pen Ridge.  This intersection offers a number of loop possibilities depending on the desired length of the hike.  There is plenty of water along the route but there are no campsites.  The closest site is CS#18 at 0.6 miles past the intersection.



IMG_2661The route is:

  1. Lead Cove Trail to Bote Mountain Trail                      1.8 miles
  2. Bote Mountain Trail to West Prong Trail                    2.8 miles
  3. Bote Mountain Trail (return) to Finley Cane Trail     0.3 miles
  4. Finely Cane Trail to Trailhead                                      2.6 miles

The morning was cool and cloudy, good for cranking some mileage.  Lead Cove Trail is a steady 1,161 ft climb at 12% through mixed hardwoods.  There are a couple stream crossings at 0.4 miles over Sugar Cove Prong and again at 1.4 miles at Laurel Cove Creek.  Lead Cove terminates at 1.8 miles into Bote Mountain Trail.  Note to 900 milers:  You may consider hiking the 1.2 miles of Bote Mountain Trail up to the Intersection with Anthony Creek and returning.  The upper section of Bote Mountain is commonly hiked in a loop with Anthony  Creek trail.  Neglecting this segment can create an orphan.  However, ignoring this advice, we hiked on down Bote Mountain to West Prong Trail.  This section loses most of the elevation gained on Lead Cove in a gentle descent over its 2.8 miles.  The segment between Finley Cane Trail and West Prong Trail is a mere 0.3 miles and we elected to grab it in less than 10 minutes of walking.  Finley Cane Trail undulates a bit losing more elevation than is gained for a net 259 ft. over 2.6 miles.  There are creek crossings at 1.0 miles over Finely Cove Creek, 2.0 miles at Hickory Tree Branch and shortly beyond at Laurel Cove Creek.

Overall, this loop hike is quite enjoyable.  The section features many opportunities to view wildflowers over the season and bear sightings are common.

HikerHead 2  Strider out…