GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS NATIONAL PARK
Ridge upon ridge of endless forest straddle the border between North Carolina and Tennessee in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, one of the largest protected areas in the Eastern United States. World renowned for the diversity of its plant and animal life, the beauty of its ancient mountains, the quality of its remnants of Southern Appalachian mountain culture, and the depth and integrity of its wilderness sanctuary, the park attracts over nine million visitors each year. Once a part of the Cherokee homeland, the Smokies today are a hiker's paradise with over 800 miles of trails.
Abrams Creek Campground
Abram's Creek Campground is located in a relatively remote area of Great Smoky Mountain National Park. The secluded setting offers visitors the ability to enjoy a multitude of recreational activities like hiking and fishing, without the crowds, which are sometimes common in other areas of the park.Abram's Creek Campground offers a traditional outdoor....more
Anthony Creek Horse Camp
Anthony Creek Horse Camp is located near the gently rolling waters of Anthony Creek. Whether blanketed in bright wildflowers in the spring or vivid colors in the fall, the scenery at Anthony Creek never disappoints.
You MUST have a HORSE to camp in Anthony Creek Horse Camp
Anthony Creek offers primitive-woods camping. There are no hookups or....more
Balsam Mountain Campground
Balsam Mountain Campground is located in a relatively remote part of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The secluded setting offers visitors the ability to enjoy a multitude of recreational activities without the crowds which are sometimes common in other parts of the park.Balsam Mountain Campground offers 42 campsites for a traditional outdoor camping....more
Big Creek Campground
Big Creek Campground is located in a remote portion of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Backcountry camping in a front country setting. There are flushing toilets and potable water. This is a tent only campground with a short walk from the parking area. The beautiful flowing waters of Big Creek parallel the campground offering the visitor a pleasant....more
Big Creek Horse Camp
The only horse camp in the Great Smoky Mountains with potable water and flushing toilets.
Pack up your horses for a getaway at Big Creek Horse Camp, located on far northeastern side of Smoky Mountains National Park, approximately 16 miles from Newport, Tennessee. This campsite sits along the gently rolling waters of Big Creek and offers miles of horse....more
Cades Cove Campground
Over 2 million visitors annually come to enjoy the scenic beauty of Cades Cove and its many historic structures. Popular activities here include hiking, biking, touring the 11-mile Cades Cove loop road and observing wildlife.
Whether blanketed in bright wildflowers in the spring or vivid colors in the fall, the scenery at Cades Cove never....more
Cades Cove Group Campground
Over 2 million visitors annually come to enjoy the scenic beauty of Cades Cove and its many historic structures, popular biking and hiking trails and scenic waterfalls and streams. Tucked in the mountains under a lush, shaded canopy, this group campground offers the best that the Great Smoky Mountains National park has to offer.Cades Cove is a broad,....more
Cataloochee campground is located in the historic Cataloochee Valley--a relatively remote part of Smoky Mountain National Park.
The secluded setting offers visitors the ability to enjoy a multitude of recreational activities like hiking and fishing, without the crowds, which are sometimes common in other parts of the park.Cataloochee offers a....more
Back country camping in a developed front country campground.
Tucked in the mountains under a canopy of cool shade, this campground creates a peaceful and secluded environment for visitors, offering the best that the Great Smoky Mountains National park has to offer. This campground is usually quieter and without the hustle and bustle of the busier....more
Deep Creek Campground
Located next to one of the most popular creeks in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Deep Creek Group Camp provides traditional primitive camping with the stunning backdrop of the mountains. Whether blanketed in bright wildflowers in the spring or vivid colors in the fall, the scenery at Deep Creek never disappoints.
The camp offers 92 individual....more
Located eight miles from Gatlinburg, Tennessee, Elkmont Campground is the largest and busiest campground in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
At an elevation of 2,150 feet, the area enjoys a moderate climate, characterized by mild winters and hot, humid summers.Elkmont Campground has 200 tent / RV campsites with paved driveways, gravel tent pads,....more
Round Bottom Campground
Saddle up your horses for a camping trip in the stunning Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Located in the North Carolina portion of the park, this campsite offers miles of horse trails with a breathtaking backdrop. Whether blanketed in bright spring wildflowers or vivid fall colors, the scenery at Round Bottom never disappoints. World-renowned for....more
Situated in the stunning Great Smoky Mountains National Park, this campsite offers an ideal setting to enjoy the outdoors.
Ridge upon ridge of forest straddles the border between North Carolina and Tennessee in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. World-renowned for its diversity of plant and animal life, the beauty of its ancient mountains and the....more
For a great outdoors experience, visit Smoky Mountains National Park. Besides the awesome panorama of scenic wonders, there are a wide variety of activities available within the park?s boundaries for both adults...more
Great Smoky Mountains National Park has about 2,115 miles of streams within its boundaries, and protects one of the last wild trout habitats in the eastern United States. The park offers a wide variety of angling experiences from remote, headwater trout streams to large, coolwater smallmouth bass streams. Most streams remain at or near their carrying capacity of fish and offer a great opportunity to catch these species throughout the year.
Fishing is permitted year-round in the park, from 30 minutes before official sunrise to 30 minutes after official sunset. The park allows fishing in most streams. Certain posted streams are closed to fishing, to protect threatened fishes. Detailed information, including a complete list of regulations and a map of fishable park waters, is available at any visitor center or ranger station.
You must possess a valid fishing license or permit from either Tennessee or North Carolina. Either state license is valid throughout the park and no trout stamp is required. Fishing licenses and permits are not available in the park, but may be purchased in nearby towns. Special permits are required for fishing in Gatlinburg and Cherokee.
Tennessee License RequirementsResidents and nonresidents age 13 and older must have a valid license. Residents age 65 and older may obtain a special license from the state.
North Carolina License RequirementsResidents and nonresidents age 16 and older need a license. Residents age 70 and older may obtain a special license from the state.
Persons under 16 in North Carolina and under 13 in Tennessee are entitled to the adult daily bag and possession limits and are subject to all other regulations.
Great Smoky Mountains National Park is located near Sevierville, Sylva
Picnic areas are located at Big Creek, Chimney Tops, Cades Cove, Collins Creek, Cosby, Deep Creek, Greenbrier, Heintooga, Look Rock, Metcalf Bottoms, and Twin Creeks.
The picnic areas at Cades Cove, Chimney Tops, Cosby, Deep Creek, Greenbrier, and Metcalf Bottoms remain open year-round. The remaining picnic areas are closed during the winter.
All picnic areas have pavilions except Chimneys and Cades Cove. The picnic pavilions at Collins Creek, Cosby, Deep Creek, Metcalf Bottoms, and Twin Creeks can be reserved for groups up to five months in advance.
Please remember that feeding bears and other wildlife is illegal. The black bear symbolizes the invaluable wilderness qualities of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. But bears are dying unnecessarily due to improper disposal of garbage or illegal feeding by visitors. A bear's remarkable sense of smell may lead it to human foods, such as a picnicker's cooler, garbage left in the open, or food scraps thrown on the ground or left in the grill. A bear that has discovered human food or garbage will eventually become day-active and leave the safety of the backcountry. It may panhandle along roadsides and be killed by a car or it may injure a visitor and have to be euthanized. Please do your part to help protect black bears and other wildlife in the Great Smokies. Clean your picnic area, including the grill and the ground around the table, thoroughly after your meal.
More than 850 miles of hiking trails traverse the Great Smoky Mountains. They range from easy to difficult and provide half hour walks to week-long backpacking trips. The Appalachian Trail runs for 70 miles along the Park's top ridge. Pets are not allowed on any trails except for the Gatlinburg Trail and the Oconaluftee River Trail. Backcountry camping requires a permit.
Safety is important to consider when exploring the backcountry. Here are a few basics to help you get started:
* Let someone know your route and return time. * Always hike with another person. * Carry a current park trail map. * Carry 2 small flashlights or headlamps. * Take adequate water - minimum 2 quarts per person per day. * All water taken from the backcountry should be treated. * Wear shoes or boots that provide good ankle support. * Carry a small first aid kit. * Check the current weather forecast and be prepared for quickly changing conditions.
With so many options, the Smokies offer a tremendous number of hiking opportunities. Mentioned below are a few of the most popular destinations:
Alum Cave Trail. This is a 4.4 mile roundtrip hike, rated moderate. It includes Arch Rock, a natural arch, Inspiration Point, and the Alum Cave Bluff. Inspiration Point offers a spectacular view of the West Prong of the Little Pigeon River's upper basin. The trail continues to Mt. Le Conte, and its beautiful viewpoints. Roundtrip distance from the parking to Le Conte is 10 miles. This trail can be icy in winter.
Andrews Bald. A 3.6 mile roundtrip hike, rated moderate. This hike heads downslope to a bald. Excellent views open to the south, toward Fontana Lake, and in early summer the azaleas explode with color. The trail head is located at the end of Clingmans Dome Road, which is closed from December through March.
Charlies Bunion. This 8-mile roundtrip hike is rated strenuous. Following the Appalachian Trail, this hike goes out to rocky crags along the state-line ridge. It has excellent views. This trail can be icy in winter.
These are only a few suggestions. To order more information or buy a hiking map please visit the Great Smoky Mountains Association's Bookstore.
For those who are interested in completing all of the more than 150 hiking trails in the Smokies, you can now become a member of the 900 miler club.
Smoky Mountain Angler The
466 Brookside Village Way