News Release

Recovery effort underway near The Sinks; Little River Road closed from Metcalf to Townsend Wye

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Date: December 17, 2022

GATLINBURG, Tenn.—Around 3:40 p.m. on Friday, December 16 Great Smoky Mountains National Park dispatch received a call that a 61-year-old man had disappeared underwater while kayaking above The Sinks and did not resurface.  

NPS rangers, along with emergency personnel from Townsend Fire Department and Blount Special Operations Response Team are on scene searching for the kayaker. High water level from recent rain is complicating recovery efforts. Little River Road from Metcalf Bottoms to the Townsend Wye is closed to accommodate emergency traffic.  

American Medical Response (AMR) is also assisting the NPS. No further information is available at this time. 


Last updated: December 17, 2022

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