Phil Perkins Photography

Lower Bailey Falls

Located in the Cherokee National Forest of the Smoky Mountains, near Greeneville, Tennessee, Lower Bailey Falls is a 20-foot tall waterfall in a slot canyon, with high rock walls set ten feet apart.

In order to access Lower Bailey Falls, visitors first follow the trail to Margarette Falls. If you’ve never been to the area, I recommend that you make time and do this shorter hike first – the picturesque Margarette Falls stands 60-feet tall, and the uphill hike along Dry Creek provides many beautiful cascades and smaller waterfalls.

The hike to Lower Bailey Falls is a total of 4 miles out and back, very strenuous, with an elevation gain of 971 feet. From the base of Margarette Falls, hikers must first ascend a steep, rugged 100-foot hillside, staying to the left at top to parallel Dry Creek upstream. A short path, of sorts, includes two creek crossings, but soon the creek itself becomes the trail for the remainder of the trek.

Everything is covered in moss and very slippery, which includes all larger stones underwater – it’s always best, when you’re able to see clearly through running water, to step on to sand or a cluster of smaller stones for better footing.

This may seem obvious, but worthy of emphasis: bearing all of ones weight on a single point, if that foot slips into an awkward position between two fixed rocks, serious injury may result…

Further ahead, space aside the creek is soon consumed by rock walls, with no place to walk except in the water, and the creek depth varies. In a few spots, to avoid waist deep (and cold) water, I had to carefully climb along the rock walls before descending back into the creek, again. And, hikers will also encounter a few larger boulders – sloping, some 12-feet long – which are deceptively slick.

Eventually, exercising patience and with safety in mind, you’ll hear the roar of falling water, and Lower Bailey Falls appears in the distance…

Pictured at left (above) is the beginning of a steep, 40-foot uphill scramble – some cliff & some forest – with a subsequent 20-foot descent leading hikers to the top edge of Lower Bailey Falls. After a long, sloping rock pathway, visitors will then see Upper Bailey Falls approx. 100-feet in the distance…more on that another time.


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Thanks for stopping by!



15 responses to “Lower Bailey Falls”

  1. DiosRaw Avatar

    Dreamy and relaxing to gaze at, wonderful photographer.

    1. Phil Avatar

      Thanks, Amber ~ it was a beautiful location, and a challenging hike 👍

      1. DiosRaw Avatar

        Worth it I can imagine.

          1. DiosRaw Avatar


  2. Filarance Avatar

    It is awesome, my friend! Your every photograph is liked very very much. Fantastic!!😂🤗🤗

    1. Phil Avatar

      I’m glad you like it, Filarance ~ thanks ☺🤗

    1. Phil Avatar

      Thank you, dear Susie ~ glad you like it 😊🌹

  3. Vivi Avatar

    Hidden beauty 😍

    1. Phil Avatar

      Indeed ~ glad you like it, Vidhya 😊🌹

  4. Irene Avatar

    Looks and sounds like a treacherous hike but well worth doing too. 😊

    1. Phil Avatar

      Yes, it was. The waterfalls were beautiful and I remained methodical, moving with caution. Thanks for the comment, Irene ~ have a nice week ahead 🌞

  5. 100 Country Trek Avatar

    I would love go there and see that, much better place to walk than here.

    1. Phil Avatar

      Yes, this waterfall is beautiful. And, with a little climbing, there’s a second similar falls another 100-feet upstream. It’s a lovely area, indeed. Thanks for stopping by, Anita 🙂

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