Water is an element that is marveled at and for good reason, even beyond it's tie to the necessity of life people are still drawn to it. That's exactly why any hike goes from good to great when you get to cross streams or view a landscape carved by water. Abrams Falls trail is a trailhead opening up from Cade's Cove, you pull in on the right hand side once on the big scenic loop.
In order to get to the falls you have to earn it. Many people don't actually make the whole hike. I suppose easy is a pretty relative term. The trail has many rocks and roots that stick up nearly the entire length, it's not paved or manicured at all which slows your time down pretty good. I love to hike so I didn't mind it as much but my hike novice wife wasn't so hardcore about it. The trail is a two and one half mile hike which doesn't sound bad but there are some moderate changes in elevation. I didn't see any children as young as mine on the trail and for good reason. I had to carry my 4 year old the last mile and then alternated kids with tired legs the entire hike back, daddy was tired.
The trail maintains a close proximity to the river really 85-90% of the way which is great. When we wanted to stop and give the kids a rest it was fun and I got to witness some rising trout (Which daddy will be packing his 5 wt for on the next trip) it created a beautiful hike. There are 3 or 4 smaller wood "bridges" these are a little tricky because as seen in the picture they'er basically logs cut horizontally with one hand rail fixed to provide stability. But hey my 3 and 4 year old got over fine and it was fun for them.
The falls are honestly in my opinion the best in the park. They'er probably around 40 feet in height but the volume of water powering over the falls and plunging into the cool cove below is postcard. If you ask me it was very much worth the trip, if you were to ask my wife... not so much. She joked about calling in a helicopter to pick us up (I took it as a joke, she was serious...) expect to earn this view. Here's what we forgot:
These are probably the most important items but we just sort of picked a trail and started going at it not thinking about how long two miles would actually be. Don't be like us, bring all the essentials.
Side story: I saw the sign of 2.5 miles and told my wife that the kids could only go about a mile and a half and not 5, she said I was being soft, 3 hours later I couldn't have been more right but of course it was still my fault.
The falls are absolutely beautiful and you really need to try out the hike. It's definitely for those who like to hike but if you appreciate the scenery that the trail offers with the finale being awesome falls then you'll battle through the moderate hike to get the prize.