Big Creek Trail Closure

Big Creek, Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Big Creek, Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Big Creek trail closure. A temporary, weekday closure of Big Creek Trail to repair the popular horse and hiker trail will be in effect Monday through Thursday, excluding federal holidays through Thursday, July 14 to safely conduct the rehabilitation work. The trail will be fully open Friday through Sunday each week. 

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Cades Cove Car Ban

Cades Cove car ban is under way.
Cades Cove car ban is under way.

Cades Cove Car Ban begins May 4, 2022 through September 28, 2022.  Cove visitors are encouraged to arrive in the afternoons and early evenings to spread use out throughout the day. Parking is limited and parking lots often fill to capacity during morning hours.

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Smoky Mountain Tamale Recipe

Smoky Mountain Tamale's are yummy in my tummy!

Smoky Mountain Tamales are yummy in my tummy!

Smoky Mountain Tamale recipe. Homemade tamales are always a Smoky Mountain special event! Did you know that the Smoky Mountains are on the edge of the historic tamale trail? That is right.  Delicious Latin food and culture migrated through this area as it progressed to the North Eastern United States from the Mississippi Delta. The city of Knoxville is still heavily influenced by this cuisine today. Tamales are highly portable and easy to make so it is no wonder they were just as popular then as now.

The Smoky Mountain Cherokee are no strangers to the delights of tamale consumption either! Their version was called bean bread or broadswords and were made with hominy. They boiled corn with wood ashes to make the masa. They stuffed the masa with beans, wrapped them with green corn leaves, cooked and chowed down. Could you imagine creating this simple dish in the vast wilderness of the Smoky Mountains by an open fire? We hope you enjoy this Tamale recipe and feel free to send us some pics especially if you make them on your next Smoky Mountain trip!

Smoky Mountain Tamale recipe.

Marco’s Coca Cola Pineapple Pork Recipe Ingredients:

Twenty ounces of Coca Cola

Three pound pork roast

Salt and Pepper

Fresh Pineapple slices

Chili flakes

Four tablespoons Worcestershire (Wooster) sauce

Masa Ingredients:

Two cups masa harina

Ten ounces of beef broth

One half teaspoon salt

One teaspoon of baking powder

Two-thirds cup of lard (Yes lard, because it makes them so delicious!)

Eight ounces of corn husks

One cup of sour cream (optional)

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Smoky Mountain Synchronous Firefly Dates Announced

Smoky Mountain synchronous firefly dates announced.
Smoky Mountain synchronous firefly dates announced.

Smoky Mountain Synchronous Firefly Dates Announced. Great Smoky Mountains National Park synchronous firefly viewing opportunity in Elkmont will begin Friday, June 3, 2022 through Friday, June 10, 2022. The lottery for a vehicle passes can be entered at The lottery opens for vehicle pass applications on Friday, April 29 at 10:00 a.m. through Tuesday, May 3 at 10:00 a.m. All applications, regardless of the time or date of entry, are considered equally in the pool of lottery applicants.

Every year thousands of visitors gather around Elkmont Campground to observe the naturally occurring phenomenon of Photinus carolinus, a firefly species that flashes synchronously. Since 2006, access to the Elkmont area has been limited during the eight days of predicted peak activity in order to reduce traffic congestion and provide a safe viewing experience for visitors that minimizes disturbance to these unique fireflies during the peak mating period. 

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Smoky Mountain Trail Volunteers Needed

Great Smoky Mountains National Park needs trail volunteers.

Smoky Mountain Trail Volunteers Needed. GSMNP is recruiting volunteers to adopt a trail along the 848 miles of maintained trails across the park. Volunteers are needed to hike at least one designated trail, four times per year, and submit a report on their findings. 

Information that adopters provide is critical in helping park trail maintenance staff better prioritize work. Through this coordinated effort, the park can better ensure that trails remain accessible for visitors and that trailside resources are protected. No experience is required, but prospective volunteers should be comfortable hiking in the backcountry and enjoy interaction with visitors.  

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