Gatlinburg - Access to Smoky Mts. NP

Aug 4th, 2009, 03:44 PM
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Gatlinburg - Access to Smoky Mts. NP

We are considering a timeshare exchange to Mountainloft in Gatlinburg. How easy is acces to NP? We are not interested in the commercial junk other than dining. Is the first part of June a good time to go?
bwg is offline  
Aug 4th, 2009, 04:30 PM
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I've only been a handful of times. I expect June would be super crowded! I went in The summmer once & it was bumper to bumper & that was many years ago.
The last time I went we mostly stayed in the cabin or immediate surrounds ( a 'Church Retreat') Did venture out once to a show & traffic was pretty bad. That was the month of February a few years ago & my last visit.
olesouthernbelle is offline  
Aug 5th, 2009, 04:32 PM
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The wildflowers will probably be near prime the last week in April which is when they hold the annual wildflower pilgrimage. You may still find some in bloom if you arrive early in June. You will have no problems with access. It is one of the few national parks which do not charge an entrance fee which is courtesy of the Rockefeller family years ago. Can access the park website at

Traffic in town is horrible. Best just to walk or take the trolley but once you get into the park traffic usually isn't bad that time of year except on the Cades Cove loop road. Be sure to check the website as road is open only to walkers and bicycles on some days.
Photodog is offline  
Aug 6th, 2009, 05:40 AM
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Thank you! What I am wondering is anyone familiar with Mountainloft in relation to where it is to Smoky Mt. NP? Is there a route to get there without going thru high traffic areas? Thanks for the wildflower info.too!
bwg is offline  
Aug 10th, 2009, 01:11 PM
Join Date: Aug 2009
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I looked at a map and it's right there. The main road into it, Rte 441 is not far at all and The Roaring Fork and Greenbriar Road access are minutes away. I've been down there in early June during the week and there were no problems with traffic or crowds at all. None. Weekend might be different, but the "crowded" reputation of GSMNP is often overblown. It's mostly roadless wilderness-and Pigeon Forge, where all the touristy stuff and traffic jams are is not the park at all and you have no reason to go there if you don't want to. It's a hikers park-there's only a few places you can get to in a car and once on a trail, I've never found it crowded at all and I've been in it 4 times (all during the week, though, so that makes a difference, I'm sure).

Early-Mid June is prime-time for Rhododendrum and Mountain Laurel bloom in the Southern Appalachians. Rhodo only blooms for a week or so, but if you hit it at the right time, it's awesome.
weimarer is offline  
Aug 10th, 2009, 02:34 PM
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We've stayed at Mountain Loft (nice place!) and from what I remember it's a straight shot into the park, though you do drive through the touristy part of Gatlinburg. We've never had a problem with traffic. There's another resort, whose name escapes me right now but I can look it up if you want it, that we've stayed in that is literally right next to the park. It was really nice too.
4sharie is offline  
Aug 11th, 2009, 04:11 PM
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Great info-- thanks alot!
bwg is offline  
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