Overall Route Rating
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3 out of 5 Rider Rating 3
2 Reviews

Great Smoky US441

Motorcycle Route Author

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By Mark B. (40 McR Points) on Jan 20, 2019

Rider Reviews

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Marshman
28 McR Points
May 4, 2019
This road is beautiful but I've ridden it three…
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Akumu
1629 McR Points
November 23, 2019
Chances are good that if you've been down TN/NC…
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Written Directions

US441 from Cherokee NC to Gatlinburg TN is the only major road through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Scenery

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.

Drive Enjoyment

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.

Tourism Opportunities

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.

Motorcycle Road Additional info

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.

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Marshman
May 4, 2019
28 McR Points
Motorcycle Type : Sport - Touring
This road is beautiful but I've ridden it three times now and I've given up. It's just sooo popular that the traffic always makes it unbearable. You spend the whole time 10 feet from some family SUV going 35 mph and it ruins it.
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Akumu
November 23, 2019
1629 McR Points
Motorcycle Type : Sport - Touring
Chances are good that if you've been down TN/NC then you've been on this road. It's not that the road is bad, it's probably properly fun if you can get it to yourself, but as it's one of the main highways over the mountains, chances are slim to none that you're ever going to see it without traffic, especially with the traffic that places like Pigeon Forge get these days, due to tourism. Lots of nice views, nice to cruise on, just a low probability for spirited riding.
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