Five Best Hikes To Mount LeConte

Five best Mt. Leconte hikes
These hikes to Mount LeConte are worth the effort!

Five best hikes to Mount LeConte. LeConte Lodge is the only overnight lodging, other than camping, available within the borders of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. You cannot drive to LeConte Lodge. You must hike one of the five trails that access this rustic retreat located near the top of the 6,593 foot Mt. LeConte. An overnight stay at LeConte Lodge is an incredible experience you won’t find any place else in the world! Just ask anyone who’s witnessed an awe-inspiring sunrise or sunset from LeConte’s Myrtle Point.

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Laurel Falls Access Fee Proposed

Laurel Falls, GSMNP parking fee proposed.

Laurel Falls Access Fee Proposed. Great Smoky Mountains National Park is seeking public input on the Laurel Falls Trail Congestion Management Pilot Project. The pilot would address visitor experience, safety, and parking congestion at one of the park’s busiest trails from Sept. 7 through Oct. 3, 2021.  

The proposal will eliminate parking in undesignated areas. A reservation only parking system will be implemented at a cost of $14 per vehicle. Visitors could also access the trailhead via shuttle service from Gatlinburg for a fee of $5 per person. Park managers propose implementing these temporary measures to assess their effectiveness in reducing congestion, enhancing visitor safety, and creating a more enjoyable Laurel Falls Trail experience. The findings of this trial period will be used to inform the alternatives developed in the previously announced Laurel Falls Trail Management Plan, this program is also open for preliminary public comment. 

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Smoky Mountain Bear Attack

Smoky Mountain bear attack!
Smoky Mountain bear attack!

Smoky Mountain Bear Attack. Great Smoky Mountain National Park officials have closed backcountry campsite 29 in Cosby after an incident with a bear occurred on June 18, 2021. Sources report a 16 year old young woman from Tennessee was attacked and injured by a black bear while sleeping in a hammock. The attack occurred at campsite 29 approximately 5.7 miles from the Maddron Bald Trailhead. The young woman was treated at the University of Tennessee Medical Center.

The following informative video about Black Bear safety featuring retired GSMNP ranger Arthur “Butch” McDade was recorded in 2016 prior to the recent bear attack.

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Smoky Mountain Strawberry Moon

Smoky Mountain Strawberry Moon is on the rise!
Smoky Mountain Strawberry Moon is on the rise!

Smoky Mountain Strawberry Moon is on the rise! This first full moon of summer 2021, also known as the Strawberry Moon, rises June 24, 2021, marking the last super moon of the year. June’s full moon arrives at 2:40 p.m. EDT (1940 GMT). … In turn, the Moon will look slightly bigger and brighter since it’s closer to the Earth than usual.

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