May 23, 2013
Weather-related road and facility closures may change throughout the day. For updated road and weather information please call (865) 436-1200. Once you hear a voice, dial extension 631 for road information or extension 630 for a weather forecast.
Follow road status updates on Twitter at http://twitter.com/smokiesroadsnps. Updates are available for Newfound Gap Road (US-441), Little River Road, Laurel Creek Road, and Cades Cove Loop Road.
This webpage is updated 3-4 times a week. For the most current report, please call the number listed above or follow on Twitter.
Roads and Facilities
Temporary Closures and Construction Projects
• Newfound Gap Road (US-441) - the section of the road from Chimneys Picnic Area for six miles up towards the crest of the mountains will be paved this summer. From May 8-June 15 and from Aug 15-Sept 30, motorists may encounter single-lane daytime closures. Traffic will be directed through the construction zone by flaggers. No daytime closures will occur from June 15-Aug 15. At night, single lane closures may be encountered from May 8-Sept 30.
• Foothills Parkway (unfinished section) - the entire unfinished section between Walland and Wears Valley is now closed to all public use until 2015 due to construction.
• The Blue Ridge Parkway is a separate National Park Service unit from Great Smoky Mountains National Park. For information about parkway closures, please call (828) 298-0398 or visit their website at http://www.nps.gov/blri/index.htm.
The following facilities will remain closed in 2013:
• Balsam Mountain Road
• Heintooga Ridge Road
• Abrams Creek Campground
• Balsam Mountain Campground and Picnic Area
• Look Rock Campground and Picnic Area
• Tow String Horse Camp
For information about seasonal closures during the winter months, please see:
Seasonal Road Closures
Seasonal Facility Closures
For current backcountry trail and campsite information, please call (865) 436-1297.
- areas where bears are active. Please read What Do I Do If I See A Bear?
for important safety information about bears.
• Backcountry campsite #26
Backcountry Areas Closed
• Chimney Tops Trail is closed due to a washed out bridge. The bridge is scheduled to be repaired by June 30. At that time, the park's Trails Forever Crew will begin Phase 2 of the ongoing trail rehabilitation project which will necessitate closing the trail each Monday through Thursday from July 1-October 17. The trail will be open weekly on Friday-Sunday during the rehabilitation project.
• Scott Mountain Trail from campsite #6 to Schoolhouse Gap. Campsite #6 is open.
• Backcountry Campsite 11
• The bridge at the southernmost end of the Smokemont loop trail is closed due to construction in the area.
Please note that the park's backcountry is managed as a natural area where the forces of nature determine trail conditions. The following list includes some conditions that the park is currently aware of. However, hikers may encounter trail conditions not listed below that require caution. Be prepared for swollen streams, bridge washouts, downed trees, and trail erosion when hiking in the park's backcountry.
• Trails throughout the park have numerous downed trees due to severe storms. Please see the list of closed trails above. Other trails may have areas that are difficult to negotiate due to downed trees.
• Boat shuttles to and from Hazel Creek when lake levels are low are from the Ollie Cove Trailhead on the Hazel Creek embayment. Ask the shuttle service about this when making a reservation to be dropped or picked up. This is due to a bridge that is out of service on Hazel Creek and adds about 1/2 mile to the hike. Ollie Cove Trail is new - trail signs are in place to direct you from the Hazel Creek Trail and Lakeshore Trail intersection to Ollie Cove Trail that is one mile east on Lakeshore Trail from Hazel Creek.
Cave and Mine Shaft Closure
Entry into all caves and mine shafts is prohibited due to concerns about the spread of white nose syndrome among bats. more