Friday, April 09, 2010

Smoky Mountains National Park hikes in a nutshell by Adam

I would like to introduce you to our areas best kept secret. Once you get through Sevierville then Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg you will enter The Great Smoky Mountains National Park. I am born and raised in Sevierville and feel so blessed to have the national park in my back yard. My dad exposed me to this great escape every chance he had. I found myself on the trails pondering what nature is. I found that my definition is the equal of spirituality. Once outside of the hustle and bustle of town there is serenity, quiet, and insight to all blessings and problems as well. There are so many options and skill levels to choose from. You can see waterfalls or rise above and see what seems to be a never ending view of mountain tops peeking through the clouds. For beginners I recommend the Gatlinburg Trail. You can park at The Happy Hiker at traffic light #10 and the trail head is located across the street behind the water treatment plant. This trail will take you to the Sugarlands Visitor Center. Just before you get to the visitors center there is a waterfall called Cataract Falls, a must see. While you are there go through the visitor’s center. There you will see wildlife and have Park Rangers on duty to help you plan your ideal hike. If you are looking for intermediate hiking, check out Alum Cave Bluff. This trail will take you to the highest peak in the Smokies, Mt. LeConte. Last but not least, for the strenuous hike I recommend Chimney Tops Trail. This hike is great but will wear you out. At the top of the Chimneys there is a huge rock to walk out onto for the added experience of standing on a mountain side peak. I highly recommend any hike in the park. You do have park rangers available to you at the Sugarlands Visitors Center to assist you in finding the perfect hike for you! Next time you are in our area I would encourage you to go to the Smokies, find a trail, park your car, and take a hike!  And Best of all, they are FREE!!!!  They also allow you to spend time with your friends & family and make memories that last a lifetime! - Adam

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