• Approximately 1,500 black bears live in the national park.

    Great Smoky Mountains

    National Park NC,TN

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  • Spring Road Status

    During spring, park roads may close due to ice, especially at high elevation where wet roads can freeze as temperatures drop at night. For road status information call (865) 436-1200 ext. 631 or follow updates at http://twitter.com/SmokiesRoadsNPS. More »

Picnicking

Picnic site at Chimneys Picnic Area.

Picnic sites have a picnic table and a raised grill for cooking.

Picnic areas are located at Big Creek, Chimneys, Cades Cove, Collins Creek, Cosby, Deep Creek, Greenbrier, Heintooga, Look Rock, Metcalf Bottoms, and Twin Creeks. Download a park map to view the location of picnic areas in the park.

The picnic areas at Cades Cove, Deep Creek, Greenbrier, and Metcalf Bottoms remain open year-round. The remaining picnic areas are closed during the winter. See schedule below.

Picnic pavilions are available at Collins Creek, Cosby, Deep Creek,
Greenbrier, Metcalf Bottoms, and Twin Creeks, Pavilions can be reserved for groups one year in advance by calling (877)444-6777, or online at http://www.recreation.gov.

All pavilions except Twin Creeks and Greenbrier cost $20 per use. The fee for the pavilion at Twin Creeks ranges from $35-75 depending on the usage. Greenbrier costs $10 per use. Payment can be made by credit card or personal check at the time the reservation is made.

Please remember that feeding bears and other wildlife is illegal. The black bear symbolizes the invaluable wilderness qualities of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. But bears are dying unnecessarily due to improper disposal of garbage or illegal feeding by visitors. A bear's remarkable sense of smell may lead it to human foods, such as a picnicker's cooler, garbage left in the open, or food scraps thrown on the ground or left in the grill.

A bear that has discovered human food or garbage will eventually become day-active and leave the safety of the backcountry. It may panhandle along roadsides and be killed by a car or it may injure a visitor and have to be euthanized. Please do your part to help protect black bears and other wildlife in the Great Smokies. Clean your picnic area, including the grill and the ground around the table, thoroughly after your meal.

 

Picnic Area

2014 Open/Close
Dates

Number
of Sites

Pavilion

Notes

Big Creek

4/11 - 10/26

10

No

Cades Cove

Year Round

81

No

Closes at 8:00 PM May 1 - Aug 31; at sunset on other dates
Chimneys

3/15 - 11/25

68

No

Closes at 8:00 PM May 1 - Aug 31; at sunset on other dates
Collins Creek

4/4 - 10/31

182

Seats 70

Closes at 8:00 PM May 1 - Aug 31; at sunset on other dates. Pavilion can be reserved in advance for $20
Cosby

4/11 - 10/31

35

Seats 55

Pavilion can be reserved in advance for $20
Deep Creek

Year Round

58

Seats 70

Pavilion can be reserved in advance for $20. Please note: Water will not be available in the picnic area until mid-March. Port-a-potties will be available.
Greenbrier

Year Round

12

Seats 70

Pavilion can be reserved in advance for $10
Heintooga

5/23 - 10/13

41

No

Look Rock

Closed

51

No

Metcalf Bottoms

Year Round

122

Seats 70

Pavilion open April 11 - Oct. 31; can be reserved in advance for $20. North half of picnic area closed during winter. Only "pack it out" picnicking from Oct 31- April 1 -- all dumpsters are removed during the winter.
Twin Creeks

4/1 - 10/31

Pavilion
only

Seats 150

By reservation only ($35-$75)
 

Visit Great Smoky Mountains National Park's online store for books, maps, and guides to the park. Operated by the nonprofit Great Smoky Mountains Association, proceeds generated by purchases at the store are donated to educational, scientific, and historical projects in the park.

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