This is a great, longer article on the species being found in the Smoky Mountains. There are more species found here, than most other places on earth. There are a number of species that have been found only in the Smokies. If you have a couple of minutes, it would be well worth it to spend that time reading the article below.
***This post brought to you by www.SmokyMountainTower.com. The Tower is the best places to stay when you’re in the Smokies. You’ll love it.***
So far this year, the number of visitors to the Smokies is about the same as this time last year. According to the article below, about 54 more people have visited since this time last year. Considering last year more visitors visited since 2000, that means the Smoky Mountains are extremely popular. With the economy in the tank, the fact that the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is free probably means many people are vacationing there to keep vacationing. I think that’s a great thing. There is usually something good in everything if you look hard enough. While the economy may be tanking, just think of the people who will learn more about the Smokies because of that. My guess is, many of those folks will be back for years to come.
***Post brought to you by www.smokymountaintower.com. That’s where we stay when we visit the Smokies. You should too!***
Billions have been spent to clean up the air around the Smoky Mountains. Here’s an article for the folks over at Knoxnews.com that shows the air quality in the area IS INDEED improving. When we were in the Smokies back in the Spring, we spent time at the look-rock tower, which is near the live webcam that is used by the park to monitor the air quality. You can see the live view from Look Rock at the link below…
The full article has lots of great info, as well as a video from Look Rock. Check it out.
You can always check our full line of live webcams from around the smokies here… http://gosmoky.wordpress.com/smokies-webcams/
***This post brought to you by www.smokymountaintower.com. When you are headed to the Smokies, the Smoky Mountain Tower is where you want to stay. Trust us. We’ve stayed in the Tower a number of times.***
This is one of our favorite roads in the Smokies. We found it on our honeymoon, when one of the worst rainstorms/floods to hit the are hit the area. I saw the road on a map, and thought it would be a nice “bypass” around the strip in Gatlinburg back to our condo. It was raining hard, and lightning every few seconds. Oh, and it was already dark out. Needless to say, Roaring Fork is difficult in those conditions. I forgot to add that the water in the rivers throughout wasextremely high. It was so high under one bridge that it was splashing up onto the road slightly as the river flowed under the bridge. Anyhow, after driving about a 3-5 miles per hour for an hour or so, we made it out. While we were scared of THAT drive, we could see via lightning flashes that this was definately a place we wanted to come back to visit. It has become one of the “to do” things every trip we take to the Smokies (when the road is open). Normally it is open all spring/summer/fall. However, it has been closed since early this year, and it looks like it will not be open again anytime soon. The park is having problems with the Florida-based contractor repaving the road. I’ll let you know here on the blog when I hear about when it will reopen. Check out the link below for more…
***Post brought to you by www.SmokyMountainTower.com THE place to stay when you stay in the Smokies***
Another great read below, from the folks over at Knoxnews.com. This time, they talked to volunteers who are there to help you learn more about the beautiful Elk in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The majority of Elk can be see in the Cataloochee Valley area. That’s where many of the volunteers work, answering questions, giving information and advice on the Elk who are flurishing in the Smokies. Personally, I’ve never been to Cataloochee (something I’m not proud of . That is definately high on my to-do list for the Smokies, but as many times as I’ve been to the Smokies, I’ve yet to visit Cataloochee. It is a more remote area of the park for most visitors. That’s one reason when the Elk were reintroduced, they were reintroduced to the Cataloochee area. On a recent trip, back in March, we DID see Elk outside of Cherokee in the park. They are magnificant. I highly recommend looking for them when you’re in the area. Ask where to find them at the visitor centers. They may be able to point you in the right direction. Once you get there, one of the many volunteers in the “Bugle Corps” may be able to point out things about the Elk you never would have known. When I retire, I can see myself moving to the Smokies, and volunteering to do something similar, so I suppose that’s part of why this particular article hit home for me. Enjoy!
***Brought to you by www.SmokyMountainTower.com. THE place to stay when you’re staying in the Smokies. I went to Hardees here in Charleston earlier this week, and the smell of coffee and bacon coming from the drive-through window took me back, if only for a moment, to the breakfasts I made early in the morning as I looked out at the beautiful view of the Smokies at the Smoky Mountain Tower back in March. You can make those memories too, at www.SmokyMountainTower.com***
This one seems pretty obvious to me. I have never seen fireflies flash together as the synchronized fireflies do in the Smokies, but I would assume it is related to trying to pick up a date. That’s exactly what scientists who are studying the behavior are saying as well. Here’s another great article from the folks over at knoxnews.com. Check it out!
***This post brought to you in part by www.SmokyMountainTower.com . They help make this blog possible. Book NOW for the fall. Dates are filling up quickly this year.***
This is an interesting article, complete with video from knownews.com. A spotlight on the tiny tarantulas that live in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. These little fellas live on Spruce Firs. That’s bad news, since the Spruce Firs are being killed off by the adelgids. Find more at the link below…
***This post, and the GoSmoky blog is brought to you in part by www.SmokyMountainTower.com. Dave and his daughter Angie are great to work with. Check them out for your next trip!***
Here’s some great news, especially if you’re planning on being in the Smokies after late April. The AP is reporting that Cades Cove will be open on April 24th. They plan to have a run the next day. The road has been closed for repaving. It was originally supposed to reopen near the end of May. The full AP story is below…
(AP) One of the most popular tourist spots in the Smokies will be accessible again earlier than expected. The National Park Service announced Wednesday that Cades Cove Loop Road is now expected to reopen April 24 – about a month earlier than had been planned. The 11-mile, one-way road was closed and rebuilt over the winter. When it opens, only bicycles and pedestrians will be allowed on it until noon the first day and a “Cades Cove Loop Lope” run has been scheduled for the second day.
***This post brought to you by www.smokymountaintower.com. You want to spend your days and evenings in the Smokies, and your nights in the Smoky Mountain Tower.***
If it’s not a rockslide, it’s a landslide causing havoc for driving in and around the Smokies. This time, it’s highway 441 in the park. That’s the OTHER main route.
This is the drive from Gatlinburg to Cherokee. A landslide just past the NC/TN border has caused traffic to have to drive on just one lane. Just to give you an idea of where this is, Newfound Gap is on the NC/TN border, so this is close to Newfound Gap.
Find more info on this particular landslide at the link below.
***This post brought to you by www.smokymountaintower.com. If a landslide keeps you from doing what you want in the mountains, just head back to The Smoky Mountain Tower. There is so much to do there, you will not even be upset about the landslides:) Check it out for your next trip to the Smokies!***
Posted in cherokee, gatlinburg, great smoky mountains national park, Highway 441, Little River Road, March, newfound gap, Newfound Gap Road, north carolina, Road Closures, Rock Slides, smoky mountain tower, Spring, tennessee
Tagged cherokee, gatlinburg, landslide, rock slide, rockslide, smoky mountains, travel
Here’s another good story. It might cause some traffic delays at the end of the year, and into upcoming years, but it sounds like it will be well worth it. The Newfound Gap road will be renovated (it sounds like many of the areas beside/near/under the road mainly) beginning at the end of 2010. They will wait until the end of the fall tourist season. They plan to repair some of the barriers and other aspects of the road from Gatlinburg to Newfound Gap.
While traffic isn’t a good thing, I’m glad to be able to report to you so many improvements in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park recently. You can find a little more info at the story below.
***This post brought to you by www.smokymountaintower.com. When you are in the area, this is where you want to stay. I was just talking to my next door neighbor last night. He told me he and his wife have only stayed in hotels/motels in Gatlinburg. I told him that’s a shame. If he spent a weekend in the Smoky Mountain Tower, he might decide to never go back to the hotel/motel routine. Don’t get me wrong, we’ve had fun there too, but we feel like we have a home in the Smokies now that we’ve stayed at the Tower. Check it out***
Posted in Fall, gatlinburg, great smoky mountains national park, newfound gap, Newfound Gap Road, Smokies Construction, smoky mountain tower
Tagged gatlinburg, great smoky mountains national park, newfound gap, roads, smoky mountains