"Autumn - Heintooga Ridge Road" by U.S. National Park Service , public domain

Great Smoky Mountains

Guide Winter 2019/2020

brochure Great Smoky Mountains - Guide Winter 2019/2020

covered parks

SMOKIES GUIDE The official newspaper of Great Smoky Mountains National Park • Winter 2019-20 In this issue Smokies Trip Planner • 2 Great Sights to See • 4 National Park News • 5 Jr. Ranger Corner • 7 Winter Driving Map • 8 Winter Wildlife Watching • 10 State of the Park • 12 How to Help the Smokies • 14 Park Etiquette • 15 Visitor Information • 16 Be sure to check the weather forecast and road conditions before traveling to the park. Image courtesy of NPS Winter in the Mountains Brings Beauty, Snow and Ice ey M en on St t Exploring the park this season is a delight made possible by Smokies road crews m uip ulfo q E r Op rd, Enginee or erat v or Super is Words with a Ranger As the roads supervisor on the Tennessee side of the park, one of the best parts of my job is going up the mountain to Newfound Gap when U.S. 441 is closed after a snow event and experiencing how peaceful and quiet it is. During winter storms, visitors may be disappointed to find that some park roads are closed. What the majority of people don’t realize is that we don’t use salt within the park because it can damage the plants and streams that Words with a Ranger continued on page 5 W inter in the Great Smoky Mountains may not bring the celebrated blooms of spring wildflower season, the long, warm days and lazy summer nights of June and July, or the famously brilliant colors of fall, but it possesses an allure that can be observed in quiet forests, frigid rushing streams, frosty fields, and snowy mountain landscapes. Visitors who seek these destinations are rewarded with fewer crowds compared to other seasons and a unique beauty only this time of year offers. That’s not to say that winter is a time of inactivity. In fact, the park’s roads crews may be busier than ever responding to winter weather events that close roads and disrupt travel. Many secondary roads in the park are winding, high-elevation roads or gravel backroads and therefore are closed during the winter season (see map on pages 8–9). Other roads, like Newfound Gap Road (U.S. 441), are subject to extended weather-related closures and require a great deal of work to reopen. Newfound Gap Road stretches 33 miles across the mountains to an elevation of 5,046 feet and connects Gatlinburg, TN, to Cherokee, NC. When heavy snow falls or slick conditions develop, it is a team effort of crews coming from each side of the mountain and meeting at the top to get the road cleared across its mountainous path. “As roads crews in the nation’s most visited national park,” said North District Roads Supervisor Stoney Mulford, “it’s important that we support visitor enjoyment and safety by providing well maintained and safe roadways for travel. Continued on page 6 OUR PARK ON SOCIAL MEDIA GreatSmokyMountainsNPS GreatSmokyNPS and SmokiesRoadsNPS GreatSmokyNPS SMOKIES TRIP PLANNER Camping in the national park The National Park Service maintains developed campgrounds at nine locations in the park. Due to work on the Bote Mountain Tunnel and no access to Cades Cove this winter (see page 6), Cades Cove Campground will be closed. Elkmont and Smokemont campgrounds are open. There are no showers or hookups other than circuits for special medical uses at Cades Cove, Elkmont and Smokemont. Campsites may be reserved up to six months in advance. Reservations are required at Abrams Creek, Balsam Mountain, Big Creek and Cataloochee campgrounds. Site occupancy is limited to six people and two vehicles (a trailer = one vehicle). The maximum stay is 14 days. Special camping sites for large groups are available seasonally at Big Creek, Cades Cove, Cataloochee, Cosby, Deep Creek, Elkmont and Smokemont. Maps and guides: SmokiesInformation.org Additional information: nps.gov/grsm Group sites must be reserved and may be secured up to a year in advance. The list below shows number of sites, elevations, expected opening dates, nightly fees and maximum RV lengths. Call 877.444.6777 or contact recreation. gov to make reservations. • Abrams Creek 16 sites, elev. 1,125', opens April 24, $17.50, 12' trailers • Balsam Mountain 42 sites, elev. 5,310', opens May 15, $17.50, 30' RVs • Big Creek 12 sites, elev. 1,700', opens April 3, $17.50, tents only • Cades Cove 159 sites, elev. 1,807', closed Dec. 30, 2019–March 5, 2020, $21-$25, 35'-40' RVs • Cataloochee 27 sites, elev. 2,610', opens June 11, $25, 31' RVs • Cosby 157 sites, elev. 2,459', opens April 2, $17.50, 25' RVs • Deep Creek 92 sites, elev. 1,800', opens May 21, $21, 26' RVs • Elkmont 220 sites, elev. 2,150', open During winter, wildlife is more visible because deciduous trees have lost their leaves. Use the rule of thumb (illustrated on the next page) to view all wildlife, including this bobcat. Image by Bill Lea SMOKIES GUIDE Smokies Guide is produced five times per year by Great Smoky Mountains Association and Great Smoky Mountains National Park. nps.gov/grsm Publication dates are roughly as follows: Spring: mid-March Summer: early June Late Summer: mid-August Autumn: mid-Sept. Winter: mid-Dec. Editor Frances Figart CADES COVE CLOSE D year-round, $21-$27, 32'-35' RVs • Smokemont 142 sites, elev. 2,198', open year-round, $21-$25, 35'-40' RVs • Look Rock closed in 2020 To prevent the spread of destructive insect pests, the NPS has banned outside firewood from entering the park unless it is USDA- or state-certified heat-treated wood. Campers may gather dead and down wood in the park for campfires. Certified wood may be purchased in and around the park. Accommodations • LeConte Lodge (accessible by trail only) provides the only lodging in the park. 865.429.5704 or lecontelodge.com For information on lodging outside the park: • Bryson City 800.867.9246 or greatsmokies.com • Cherokee 828.788.0034 or cherokeesmokies.com • Fontana 800.849.2258 or fontanavillage.com • Gatlinburg 800.588.1817 or gatlinburg.com • Maggie Valley 800.624.4431 or maggievalley.org • Pigeon Forge 800.251.9100 or mypigeonforge.com • Sevierville 888.766.5948 or visitsevierville.com • Townsend 800.525.6834 or smokymountains.org Pets in the park Pets are allowed in front-country campgrounds and beside roads as long as they are restrained at all times. Pets are not allowed on park trails, except for the Gatlinburg and Oconaluftee River trails. Dogs on these trails must be leashed. Writers Valerie Polk Aaron Searcy Design Assistants Lisa Horstman Emma DuFort Lead Designer Karen Key NPS Coordinator Susan Sachs Smokies Guide Winter 2019-20 • 2 January 2 at 8 p.m. — February 29, 2020 See page 6 for more information. Special events December 14 Festival of Christmas Past: Sugarlands Visitor Center December 21 Holiday Homecoming: Oconaluftee Visitor Center April 21-25, 2020 Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage: parkwide For rent The Appalachian Clubhouse and Spence Cabin at Elkmont can be rented for daytime events starting in April. Contact recreation.gov. Visitor centers Winter hours of operation are: Cades Cove: 9-4:30 in Dec.; closed Jan. and Feb.; 9-6 in March. Oconaluftee: 8-4:30 in Dec.-Feb.; 8-5 in March. Sugarlands: 8-4:30 in Dec.-Feb.; 8-5 in March. Picnic areas Picnic areas open year-round are: Deep Creek, Greenbrier and Metcalf Bottoms. All others are expected to open in spring. Cades Cove is closed due to work on Bote Mountain Tunnel (see page 6). Picnic areas have a table and raised grill (charcoal fires only). See the map on page 16 for locations. Picnic pavilions may be reserved for $12.50– $80 at recreation.gov. Planning Committee Katie Corrigan Becky Nichols Bill Stiver Paul Super Stephanie Sutton Florie Takaki E Printed on recycled paper © 2019 Great Smoky Mountains Association P.O. Box 130 Gatlinburg, TN 37738 SmokiesInformation.org packers are often caught off guard RU L E O F T H U M B when a sunny day FO R WI L D L I F E V I EW I N G in the 70s°F is followed by a wet, bitterly cold one. By mid- to late April, the weather is milder. • Summer - By mid-June, heat, haze and humidity are the norm. Most precipitation occurs as afternoon thundershowers. • Autumn - In mid-September, a pattern of warm, sunny days and crisp, clear nights often begins. However, cool, rainy days also When viewing wildlife, hold your arm out straight occur. Snow and, if you can’t cover the animal in your line of may fall at the sight with your thumb, you’re too close! higher elevations in November. • Winter - Days Other services during this fickle season can be sunny There are no gas stations, showers or and 65°F or snowy with highs in the restaurants in the national park. 20s. At the low elevations, snows of 1" or more occur three to five times Park weather per year. At Newfound Gap, 69" fall • Spring - March has the most changeon average. Lows of -20°F are possible able weather; snow can fall on any day, at the higher elevations. especially at the higher elevations. BackThese temperature and precipitation averages are based on data for the last 20 years. Temperatures are in degrees Fahrenheit. An average of over 84" (7 feet) of precipitation falls on the higher elevations of the Smokies. On Mt. Le Conte, an average of 82.8" of snow falls per year. Fishing Fishing is permitted year-round in the park, and a Tennessee or North Carolina fishing license is required. Either state license is valid throughout the park, and no trout stamp is required. Fishing with bait is prohibited in the park. A special permit is required for the Cherokee Reservation and Gatlinburg. Licenses are available in nearby towns. A free fishing map with a complete list of all park fishing regulations is available at visitor centers. Camping in the backcountry Winter camping can be an exciting adventure for persons properly equipped and informed. To facilitate this activity, the National Park Service maintains more than 800 miles of trails and more than 100 backcountry campsites and shelters throughout the park. One of the greatest challenges for backcountry campers is deciding where to go. Here are some tools to help. 1. Get the map. Go online to view the park’s official trail map (nps.gov/grsm/ planyourvisit/maps.htm), which shows all park trails, campsites and shelters. Park rules and regulations are also listed here. If you wish, you can purchase the printed version of the trail map for $1 by stopping at any park visitor center or calling 865.436.7318 x226 or shopping online at SmokiesInformation.org. 2. Plan your trip. Call or stop by the park’s backcountry office, which is open daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m, for trip planning help. The office is located in Sugarlands Visitor Center, two miles south of Gatlinburg on U.S. 441. 865 436.1297. 3. Get a permit. Make your reservation and obtain your permit through the backcountry office at Sugarlands Visitor Center (by phone or in person) or online at smokiespermits.nps.gov. Reservations and permits are required for all overnight stays in the backcountry. The cost is $4 per person per night. Reservations may be made up to 30 days in advance. Smokies Guide Winter 2019-20 • 3 Winter hikers should be especially aware of the danger of hypothermia— the lowering of body temperature. The combination of rain, cold and wind is especially dangerous. At the park’s higher elevations, hypothermia can be a threat even during summer. To prevent hypothermia, carry reliable rain gear at all times. Layer clothing that provides warmth when wet (not cotton). Be prepared for sudden weather changes, especially at the higher elevations. Stay dry. Driving distances and estimated times Allow for longer driving times during poor weather. Cherokee, NC to: Gatlinburg: 34 miles (1 hour) Newfound Gap: 18 miles (½ hour) Clingmans Dome: 25 miles (¾ hour) Cataloochee: 39 miles (1½ hours) Deep Creek: 14 miles (½ hour) Gatlinburg, TN to: Cherokee: 34 miles (1 hour) Newfound Gap: 16 miles (½ hour) Clingmans Dome: 23 miles (¾ hour) Cataloochee: 65 miles (2½ hours) Greenbrier Cove: 6 miles (¼ hour) Deep Creek: 48 miles (1½ hours) Townsend, TN to: Newfound Gap: 34 miles (1¼ hours) Gatlinburg: 22 miles (¾ hour) Cherokee: 52 miles (1½ hours) Look Rock: 18 miles (½ hour) Cataloochee: 87 miles (3 hours) 1. Cosby 2. Middle Prong Highlights: scenic drive, hiking trails, waterfalls This small area of Great Smoky Mountains National Park features a scenic road that is open year-round but may close periodically due to winter road conditions. From Laurel Creek Road, Tremont Road follows the lovely Middle Prong of Little River and transitions to a gravel road. Continuing on the gravel road for three miles to its end makes a beautiful streamside drive. The road traces the path of a railroad used by the lumber company operating in this area from 1926 to 1939. At the road’s end, an easy walk across a footbridge and up Middle Prong Trail leads to a cascade where benches provide a relaxing vantage point. Mileage from Townsend—9 from Gatlinburg––26 from Cherokee—55 3. Deep Creek Highlights: walking trails, waterfalls, bicycling 4. Smokemont Highlights: camping, historic church Open year-round, Smokemont Campground is situated near the banks of the Oconaluftee River, a major waterway acclaimed for its trout fishing as well as its place in 19th-century Smoky Mountain history. When Newfound Gap Road is closed because of snow, this area is still accessible. Bradley Fork–Smokemont Loop (6.1 miles) is a strenuous route featuring the waters of Bradley Fork and a historic cemetery. You can start the trail near campground D Loop. Smokemont Nature Trail is a .75-mile introduction to the area. MIDDLE PRONG     Highlights: hiking, waterfall, scenic drive, mountain views Cosby features hiking trails that offer a little something for everyone. The mile-long Cosby Nature Trail is a good way to stretch your legs and get acquainted with the area. The 4.2-mile round-trip hike to Hen Wallow Falls, one of the park’s highest waterfalls at 95 feet tall, is moderate and extremely popular. Sutton Ridge Overlook and its impressive views are accessible from the Lower Mt. Cammerer Trail. It’s 2.5 miles out and back. A 6-mile section of Foothills Parkway between Cosby and I-40 provides stellar views of the majestic Smokies and is well worth the drive. Mileage from Gatlinburg––20 from Townsend—40 from Cherokee—53 The Deep Creek area is an off-thebeaten-path destination in the Great Smoky Mountains celebrated for its rushing streams and LOOK ROCK waterfalls. Hikers enjoy the area because of the waterfalls and to e d es los i c l because there are d cr veh a R o o to m several loop hikes to choose from. Bicyclists can take advantage of one of the few park trails where bikes are permitted. Deep Creek area loop hikes include Juney Whank Falls (0.6 mile), Three Waterfalls Loop (2.4 miles) and Deep Creek–Indian Creek Loop (4.4 miles). Longer loop hikes are also available. Bicycles are allowed on Deep Creek and Indian Creek trails to the points where the old roadbeds end and the trail treads begin. Deep Creek Picnic Area is open year-round. Mileage from Cherokee—14 from Gatlinburg—48 from Townsend—65     GREAT SIGHTS TO SEE CATALOOCHEE Waterrock Knob Built in 1896, the Smokemont Baptist Church is located near the bridge between Newfound Gap Road (U.S. 441) and the campground. Mileage from Gatlinburg—28 from Cherokee—5 from Townsend—46 5. Old Elkmont Town Highlights: historic buildings, walking trails, camping The Elkmont area was once a logging boomtown and a bustling enclave of summer vacation homes. Today, the National Park Service has restored the Appalachian Clubhouse, Spence Cabin and several other historic buildings that offer a glimpse into the summer resort era. Elkmont also has a variety of easyto-moderate hiking trails, including the Cucumber Gap loop (5.5 miles), Elkmont Nature Trail (0.8-mile roundtrip), Jakes Creek Falls (3.2 miles roundtrip) and Huskey Branch Falls (4.3 miles round-trip). Little River Trail makes a pleasant streamside stroll. Because of the closure of Cades Cove for the Bote Mountain Tunnel repairs (see page 6), Elkmont campground remains open for campers this winter. Smokies Guide Winter 2019-20 • 4 Mileage from Gatlinburg––7 from Townsend—15 from Cherokee—39 6. Look Rock Highlights: mountain views, short hike, scenic drive, observation tower Look Rock, named for a natural rock ledge, is the highest point on the western portion of Foothills Parkway. It is located between the Walland and Chilhowee entrances to the parkway. This area is subject to weather-related closures. Please check road conditions before travel. A half-mile trail from the Look Rock parking area to the top of the ridge provides access to Look Rock Tower, with a 360-degree panoramic view of the Smokies and neighboring foothills. Thunderhead Mountain and Gregory Bald are among the landmarks that can be viewed from this vantage point. This location makes a particularly good spot for stargazing. Nearby Look Rock Picnic Area has recently reopened with limited services after the first phase of a rehabilitation project. Mileage from Townsend—16 from Gatlinburg––38 from Cherokee—68 Words with a Ranger continued from page 1 are protected here. We use ‘chat,’ a mixture of sand and fine gravel, to improve traction on roadways and reduce the impact on the wildlife and other species that inhabit the park. In order to get closed roads open again in the winter, it takes a combination of plowing, sanding and waiting for temperatures to rise to help with the melting process. If temperatures will be below freezing for several days, we monitor road conditions and add additional chat as needed. Before opening any road after a closure, our priority is to make sure it is safe for visitor travel— with the realization that some of our visitors have never driven in snow or ice before. I am responsible for all of the paved and unpaved roadways in the North District, including Cades Cove and the Tennessee portion of Newfound Gap Road. This work involves roadside mowing and string trimming, litter removal, hazard tree removal, roadway and shoulder repairs, road signage, clearing rock slides and downed trees, snow and ice removal, maintenance of bridges and gates, and supervising the maintenance personnel who service and repair more than 200 vehicles and other equipment assigned to the park. I am proud of all of the hard work my employees do and their dedication to take care of this natural resource that provides for visitor enjoyment. When you see crews working on or near the roads, please slow down and remember that they have loved ones who want to see them come home at night. PARK NEWS Great Smoky Mountains National Park news briefs The Park Welcomes Lisa McInnis Lisa McInnis is the park’s new chief of resource management and science. She comes to the Smokies from the Natchez Trace Parkway in Tupelo, Mississippi, where she held a similar position. McInnis specializes in prairie restoration and fire ecology of southeastern forests. “I became interested in public lands when I learned about the mission of the NPS during college,” she told Smokies Guide. “I remember thinking it was one of the most noble missions I had ever heard—and I still think that to this day.” McInnis received a bachelor of arts degree in biology from Centenary College, a master of science in biology from Louisiana Tech University and a master of business administration from Mississippi State. She got her PhD in forestry with a fire ecology emphasis from Stephen F. Austin State University. “As an undergraduate, I took a botany class and began to learn about the interrelationships between plants and fire, and I was blown away,” she said. “I knew then that I wanted to learn more.” In school, McInnis said she didn’t fully appreciate the challenges land managers face in a park setting. “We are dealing with critical environmental issues such as air and water quality, impacts to soils and vegetation, and the detrimental effects of nonnative animals, plants and diseases on natural and cultural resources,” she said. “Using the best available science to guide management decisions represents an ongoing challenge for land managers.” Lisa McInnis is Great Smoky Mountains National Park’s new chief of resource management. Image courtesy of NPS Volunteer Jim Goddard Receives Regional Recognition Great Smoky Mountains National Park’s Superintendent Cassius Cash (left) and Backcountry Management Specialist Christine Hoyer (right) present Jim Goddard (center) with his Hartzog Award. Image courtesy of NPS Dedicated park volunteer Jim Goddard is the recipient of the National Park Service Southeast Regional Hartzog Award for Enduring Service, a recognition of the significant skills, talent and time he has shared with the park for more than two decades. “Jim has provided a tremendous service to the visitors of the Smokies,” said Superintendent Cassius Cash. “He has been instrumental in ensuring that visitors are able to safely navigate the park trail system and in the preservation of the park’s cultural history. His legacy will live on for generations to come, and it is an honor to recognize him for his contributions.” Goddard has served continuously as a Volunteer-In-Park (VIP) for more than 23 years. In addition to creating the iconic wooden trail signage that marks the Smokies’ 850 miles of backcountry trails, he has performed trail maintenance and helped restore and preserve fragile cul- Smokies Guide Winter 2019-20 • 5 tural resources. Goddard’s craftsmanship has been applied to one-of-a-kind replicas of church benches, school desks and tub mills. He has continued to contribute to the park community and visitor experience by helping to plan, coordinate and facilitate popular special events. Goddard was an ambassador for the 75th anniversary of Great Smoky Mountains National Park and for the National Park Service centennial celebration. Great Smoky Mountains National Park recognizes three additional VIPs for their outstanding service contributions: Clyde and Deborah Whitaker for their work as campground hosts at Cosby, Elkmont and Cades Cove; and Janie Bitner for serving as inventory and monitoring assistant at Twin Creeks. The park has well over 2,800 volunteers who perform a wide variety of important work and provide valuable service to the park and its visitors. Winter in the Mountains Brings Beauty, Snow and Ice Exploring the park this season is a delight made possible by Smokies road crews continued from page 1 Responding to winter’s challenges is a big part of that.” For current park road conditions call 865.436.1200 or follow SmokiesRoadsNPS on Twitter. CAD ES COVE CLOSE D January 2 at 8 p.m.–February 29, 2020 A warm winter day at lower elevations can be a snowy day high in the mountains. Newfound Gap, the highest point on Newfound Gap Road (U.S. 441) is frequently 10–15° cooler than Cherokee or Gatlinburg. Higher elevations also receive more precipitation— sometimes an annual total of five feet or more of snow. These challenging weather conditions make road closures necessary until the park’s road crews can clear them. Images by Bill Lea except for snow plow, courtesy of NPS. Salt brine and chemicals are not used on roads within the park. These traditional treatments can attract wildlife that may ingest these substances because they think they are natural salt. Animals can become sick and even die as a result. Such treatments can damage vegetation and streams near the road as well. So, instead, the park uses a mixture of sand and gravel to reduce the effects on the surrounding environment. When driving on snow-covered roads, reduce your speed and avoid sudden braking. Leave extra space between you and the vehicle in front of you. Use lower gears or brake very gently when you need to slow down. Smokies Guide Winter 2019-20 • 6 The road leading in to Cades Cove will be closed for part of this winter. Crews will be working to repair the Bote Mountain Tunnel, an iconic passageway on Laurel Creek Road that provides the only vehicle access to this part of the park. The road will be closed to all motorists, cyclists and pedestrians starting just beyond Tremont Road. The full closure is necessary to allow for the repair of the internal drainage system in the walls and ceilings of the 121-foot-long tunnel. Crews will enclose and heat the tunnel, allowing temperature-sensitive repairs to be conducted during this time. Intermittent single-lane closures will occur between March 1 and June 15 to complete the tunnel repairs and repave the tunnel area. Due to this roadwork, Cades Cove Campground will be closed December 30, 2019, through March 5, 2020. Elkmont and Smokemont campgrounds will remain open to accommodate winter campers. Bote Mountain Tunnel was constructed in 1948 and has not had any significant rehabilitation work since. Without these important repairs, leaks could result in a compromised structure and ice hazards during the winter months. Bote Mountain Tunnel image by Bill Lea What cheer cheer cheer! THIEF! THIEF! THIEF! Who cooks for you? Who cooks for you all? c a Phee-bee phee-bee d Drink your teeeeeea! b matching! BIRDS Many birds in the forest are most easily identified by the songs they sing. Some people make up word phrases to help them remember the songs. Can you match each bird to the bird song? Teakettle teakettle teakettle! The Blue Jay thinks he’s been robbed:____ e f The Carolina Wren likes to make tea: ___ The Eastern Towhee is bossy about tea: ___ The Northern Cardinal is a bit of a cheerleader: ___ The Eastern Phoebe says her own name: ___ At night, the Barred Owl asks this question about food preparation: ___ Illustrations by Lisa Horstman b. dog hobble d. sycamore TREE LEAVES Match the drawing of the leaf with the tree (and clue). You can make maple sugar from this tree:____ This tree has tiny red flowers in early spring and it’s leaves turn bright red in autumn: ___ a. red maple The seeds of this tree are called acorns: ___ c. white oak The trunk of this tree loses some of its bark and looks kind of sick: ___ This tree has bark, but doesn’t bite: ___ Hunting dogs are said to have a hard time running through masses of this shrub: ___ TREE LEAVES: f, a, c, d, e, b Smokies Guide Winter 2019-20 • 7 c, f, b, a, e, d e. dogwood ANSWERS BIRDS: f. sugar maple To Knoxville Be Aware of Closures To I-40 Cosby Exit 443 Hartford CHEROKEE NATIONAL FOREST Exit 447 Park View 441 re sC ke il Tra lls G R E AT Lake Cheoah E R SE I OL NA a il i ch Chasteen Creek Falls rk Fo i Smokemont Loop Trail Bone Valley Trail Hazel Creek Trail l Fontana Dam Fontana La Lake Twentymile H RT vie wD Ap p al a Bi g Blu g e R id e Parkw ay Maggie Valley CHEROKEE INDIAN RESERVATION Soco Gap Cherokee Museum Picnic Areas Camping 19 Deep Creek Paved Roads Gravel Roads 74 Trails 23 74 Roads closed for the winter (highlighted in purple) Great Mountain Views SYLVA 143 28 NANTAHALA NATIONAL FOREST 441 23 B w ar k id ge P lue R ©GSMA2019 129 WAYNESVILLE Major Roads 441 Trail Santeetlah Lake To Asheville Dellwood n JOYCE KILMER - SLICKROCK WILDERNESS AREA 276 Heintooga Ridge Rd closed for Winter Major Hwys r Swain County Visitor Center 28 ch Mingo Falls ia NO ke Juney Whank Falls Trail BRYSON CITY FONTANA VILLAGE Cre Juney Whank Falls Goldmine Loop Trail CHEROKEE Balsam Mountain ad Oconaluftee River Trail 441 Indian Creek Falls Tom Branch Falls Co ve Ro Cre ad ek 19 Mountain Farm Museum ra i Twentymile Cascade Mingus Oconaluftee Mill Visitor Center at visitor centers, Elkmont and Smokemont campgrounds, Deep Creek and Greenbrier picnic areas, Newfound Gap and Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont. Vault toilets are also available at Rainbow Falls and Abrams Falls trailheads. Loop Trail il Co ve Trail Restrooms are available Boogerman Loop Trail H Ro ek Clingmans Dome Rd closed 12/2/19–3/29/20 Andrews Bald eT Tw m enty CA TE NN ES Wolf Ridge Trail Deals Gap at nd Bot ou a/R og o t in He Exit 20 Smokemont il Twentymile Loop Trail Calderwood Lake Kan AL RK Straight Fork Rd closed for winter Kephart Prong Trail Deep Tr a l e s) hic ve 129 CHEROKEE NATIONAL FOREST Oconaluftee Valley Overlook Thunderhead Mountain Appalachia n o dt ad ( se clo r to mo ION N AT PA Cataloochee PISGAH Valley Overlook NATIONAL FOREST Cataloochee R tooga idge Road ein Pa n r so Ro Trail Newfound Gap Trail M O U N TA I N S an Charlies Bunion Clingmans Dome closed 1/2/2020 at 8 p.m.– 2/29/2020 Chilhowee ch Alum Cave Bluffs Chimney Tops Chimney Tops Cades Cove n B ra Fern Branch Falls Tr SMOKY ek T Alum Cave Trail Middle Prong Trail m sF a Mount Guyot ala R n un t ai p Trail Big Creek tom Rd. Ja b er Ga Mount Le Conte Rainbow Falls Lit tle cu m re il Tra Rich Cu Carlos Campbell Overlook r ve d GSM Institute at Tremont Lynn Camp Prong Cascades Tri lli u bo Tram Gap il Tra w F a ll il s Ramsey Cascades Mouse Creek Falls Porters Flat Grotto Falls Road Maloney Point Elkmont tR Mo Little Sugarlands Visitor Center il ra l Noah ‘Bud’ Ogle Place Ri Schoolhouse Gap Trail r Rive Meigs Falls Cades Cove Visitor Center Many secondary and higher elevation park roads are closed to motor vehicles in winter. These include: Clingmans Dome Road, Forge Creek Road (closes December 31), Heintooga/Round Bottom Road, Heintooga Ridge Road, Little Greenbrier Road, Rich Mountain Road, Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail, and Straight Fork Road. Parson Branch Road is closed indefinitely due to hazardous trees. ek Trail Cre s Trail ade asc Ramsey C in Ra o op Trai ut T stn Ch e Fighting Creek Trail Laurel Falls Laurel Falls Trail on Ab ra Abrams Falls Abrams Creek Roads: Note that all park roads, including Newfound Gap Road (U.S. 441), may close temporarily for snow or other inclement weather at any time. 73 Heritage Center ad Little Greenbrier School Tre m Look Rock Tower 321 Townsend Cataract Falls Little Brier Gap Trail 40 Lo w Tra Gap il Red light #8 Po r t e r s C Fo o t hi Townsend Visitors Center Rich Mountain Rd closed for winter Mount Cammerer Trail NA es M ounta i n Ap p Metcalf Bottoms ll s Pa Hen Wallow Falls Gab GATLINBURG Wears Valley ek Tra il To Chattanooga ay rk w 73 321 Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail closed for winter Big Gatlinburg Welcome Center National Park Information Center Greenbrier ay Walland s Park w l l i h F o ot 129 411 Pittman Center N OR TH C AROL I Mount Cammerer Tr 321 Cosby TENNESSEE Exit 451 32 PIGEON FORGE 321 Laurel Creek Road leading to Cades Cove will be closed to all traffic from January 2 at 8 p.m. through February 29, 2020, to repair the Bote Mountain Tunnel. The tunnel was constructed in 1948 and has not had any significant rehabilitation work since. The work will involve replacing nine draining structures within the tunnel wall, patching the concrete liner, replacing the underdrain, and sealing concrete cracks. Repaving will be completed at a later date. See page 6 for more information. Snow Seekers: For people seeking a place to play in the snow, Clingmans Dome Road (closed in winter) is popular with walkers and crosscountry skiers. There are no areas suitable for sledding in the park; snow-tubing slopes may be available locally. th To Newport ay 411 321 Hiking Trails: Hiking trails are open in winter. However, some trailheads will be inaccessible to motor vehicles because of road closures. Walking on seasonally closed roads is permitted unless snow plowing or construction work is underway. o Fo kw Par ills 416 129 Cades Cove closed Jan 2. at 8 p.m. – Feb. 29, 2020 I 321 32 MARYVILLE n addition to regular seasonal closures, park visitors should be aware of upcoming work that will prevent access to Cades Cove. This closure also affects park service access and

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