Great Smoky US441 + ADD NEW ROUTE
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US441 from Cherokee NC to Gatlinburg TN is the only major road through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
GSMNP is the most visited national park in the world. With significant altitude changes as you ride through Newfound Gap you have several scenic pullouts that afford long range views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The brief side trip to Clingman's Dome puts you at the highest point in Tennessee. On a clear day looking east you can see more than a dozen distinct mountain ridges.
Well maintained and most of it was resurfaced in 2018. Frequent pullouts reduce the traffic backups that can occur during peak tourist season. A few switchbacks as you cross the gap, but the national park speed limit makes them easy to negotiate. On the Tennessee side is a full corkscrew where you ride under the road you were just on. Do watch your speed, a violation is a federal offense. Park rangers and forest service personnel are everywhere.
In Cherokee and Gatlinburg are all the amenities a person could ask for. Inside the national park are restroom facilities, but no retail stores. At the beginning and end of this 42 mile ride are well stocked visitors centers were you can purchase GSMP gear and mementos.
GSMNP, by federal law, is not allowed to charge an entrance fee. The elevation change means the top is noticeable colder than the start and finish areas. As the name implies, the mountains can fill with fog (Great Smoky) without warning. There is a large herd of Elk in the park that sometimes cause elk jams.
Nickname (optional) : Miles of Blue Ridge Views