Going to Tennessee tomorrow.

Discussion in 'Tennessee' started by araskan, Mar 2, 2007.

  1. araskan

    araskan Member

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    me and a few friends are going to the tennesee smokies tomorrow on a whim. Ive got a rough idea of what I would like to do but could use some help. I would like to do some hiking, climbing around, and generaly just being out in nature. so any recommended, less tourist populated (yes, i realize i am a tourist) areas would be nice, but any recommendations for a few 20 year olds would appreciated.
     
  2. hippyjeepgirl

    hippyjeepgirl Member

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    cataloochie and big creek are the far less visited areas of the park which are easily accessible from I-40. Big creek is on the N end of the park, and has a 5 mile trail that follows an old railroad bed along side of a roaring mountain creek to the camoing area. Very scenic, not heavily visted at all. Catloochie is similar to cades cove, but is on the NE side of the park in NC. They release problem bears in both areas, so take a camera, and use common sense and caution.

    Check this link out for more info about the park.

    http://www.nps.gov/grsm/planyourvisit/trip-planner.htm
     
  3. WalkerInTheWoods

    WalkerInTheWoods Member

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    Sorry I am a bit late, but maybe you will make it back sometime. :)

    First, be sure to stop by a visitor center on your way in and buy a trail map for $1. It is worth a lot more than that. The Day Hike and Waterfall Hike maps are nice to have, but all the trails are on the main trail map so you can plan your own if you only want to buy one.

    Technically, Big Creek is in North Carolina, but that doesn’t really matter. It is a great place to hike and has an awesome campground if you like using a tent (no RV’s allowed, yes!!! :) ) Plus it is one of the cheapest campgrounds in the park.

    The road does not open until April 1st but head up to Clingman’s Dome if you get a chance. The parking lot can be a bit crowded as well as the path up to Clingman’s Dome, but that is ok because that is not where you want to go. Well maybe you do, but just for a minute. Before you actually start up the path go left down the trail towards the Appalachian Trail and follow the signs to Andrew’s Bald. It is not usually too crowded and it is a nice trail with an awesome view. This is up towards the highest place in the park, so it can be cold here so be prepared.

    Cades Cove can probably be the most crowded place in the park, but not all the time and not on most trails. I have been there many times during the summer and winter when there is hardly anyone there. Avoid it during the fall though. It is always crowded. Most people just drive around the loop and rarely get out of their car. Their loss and our gain. If you want a longer hike at a little over 8 miles park in the parking area right before the loop begins. Start walking down the loop road and take the trail on the right. Follow Rich Mountain Loop Trail to Indian Graves Gap Trail to Crooked Arm Ridge Trail back to where you started. After the first mile or so I never saw another human until I got back to end, and this was on a very crowded day.

    I have never been to Cataloochee but I hear it is really nice. I hope to check it out this year.
     
  4. araskan

    araskan Member

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    Thanks for the replies. Unfortunately we didnt end up spending much time in tennessee though. We kept heading south to get warm (we're from michigan... its cold damnit) and ended up at ocala national forest in florida... was all around a excellend trip though.

    If I end up visiting the smokies this summer ill keep the places you recommended in mind. once again, thanks for the tips, they're much appreciated
     
  5. WalkTheSky

    WalkTheSky Member

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    Cades Cove is beautiful. Used to be able to always go through and see a bunch of deer and bears there, but not so much anymore.
     
  6. WalkerInTheWoods

    WalkerInTheWoods Member

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    I don't think I have ever seen any bear in Cades Cove, but I almost always see dear every time I am there.
     

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