Welcome to the Smokies Website!
The Smokies WebSite, www.smokies.ws, provides information about recreational
opportunities in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and surrounding areas.
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the most visited National Park
in the United States. This site is a guide to hiking, camping, picnicing, and
many other great activites available in the park.
Outdoor Recreational Activities
Information about the following activities in the Smokies is available on
Hiking in the smokies, including
a list of trails, a description, location, length, difficulty level, and
a lot of other useful and interesting information.
Camping in the smokies, including a list of
Horseback Riding in the smokies, including
list of riding stables in and near the park.
Picnic spots in the smokies, including
location, which ones have grills and picnic tables and good restrooms.
Places to Go in the Smoky Mountains
The Smokies offers a wide variety of destinations:
- Clingmans Dome is
the highest peak in the Smokies and provides a 360 degree panaramic view
of the mountains.
- Cades Cove is one of the most popular
destinations, providing one of the best places to see wildlife.
- Greenbrier is a great out-of-the-way
destination which does not see much traffic. Greenbrier Road runs along
the Little Pigeon River with many good spot to pull off and play in the
water. A small picnic area and several good hiking trails area also
- Cosby has a large picnic
area and campground which are rarely crowded. Several good hiking trails
start in Cosby.
- Look Rock, on the Foothills Parkway west,
has a lookout tower, similar to Clingmans Dome, with panaramic views of
- Newfound Gap Road is the most popular drive in Smokies. It crosses the
mountains from Gatlinburg, TN to Cherokee, NC, passing several hiking
trails, picnic areas, and pulloffs with great views.
- Little River Road is another great drive. It follows the River from
Sugarlands past Tremont and Elkmont, and ending at the Townsend "Y".
- Roaring Fork Motor trail
is one of the best auto tours in the Smokies. The
5 mile road passes through the forest, by mountain streams, and past
well-preserved log cabins and other historic buildings. It is also a good
place to see wildlife.
- Cataloochee is a great place to see wildlife (including elk) and to
see log cabins and other historic buildings.
- Deep Creek, near Bryson City, is best known for streams and waterfalls.
Several hikes to waterfalls start in the Deep Creek area.
- Fontana Dam is the largest Dam in the eastern United States. Fontana lake
provides boating and fishing.
- Heintooga/Balsam Mountain is known for its spectacular mountain views and summer
- Elkmont Large campground, centrally located
Trails Illustrated Map
is an excellent map of the Smokies, showing roads, hiking trails, camping areas,
picnic areas, ranger stations, and more. It is waterproof and tearproof, so
it is very durable to take with you camping or hiking, even if it rains.
100 Hikes in The Great Smoky Mountains National Park
is one of the most informative books available about hiking in the Smokies.
It gives detailed information about many of the hiking trails in the park.
Insiders' Guide to the Great Smoky Mountains
provides good information about outdoor activities in the park. It also provides
complete information about the surrounding areas including dining, lodging,
and area attractions.
Weather in the Smoky Mountains
The temperature varies depending on the season and elevation.
The park gets quite a bit of rain.
The table below shows the current conditions at the 3 main entrances to the park.
Temperatures at the higher elevations can be 10-20 degrees cooler.
Click on one of the entries below to get a complete forcast.
Spring weather is unpredictable. Snow often falls in the higher elevations
in early spring. But highs can reach the 80s in mid to late spring. Rainfall is
common in the spring.
Summer is hot, hazy, and humid. Summer is a good time to visit higher elevations
as temperatures are 10-20 degrees cooler. Highs are in the 80s and 90s and
lows are in the 60s and 70s. Thunderstorms are common in the afternoons.
Fall is warm during the day and cool in the evenings. Highs are in the
70s and 80s early fall and 50s and 60s by November.
Winter is generally moderate, but can be cold at times. The higher
elevations can be very cold and get more snow than lower elevations. Most
snow falls in January, February, and early March, but may come anytime from
late December to early May.
The following table shows the average high and low temperatures (in
degrees Fahrenheit) and average snowfall (in inches) in low
elevations (Gatlinburg) compared to high elevations (Clingmans Dome).