Stretching through parts of North Carolina and Tennessee, the Great Smoky Mountains national park is a one of a kind vacation destination. Visitors flock from around the country and around the world to hike its challenging trails, fish its beautiful streams and rivers, sleep under the stars and commune with nature. The park is home to all manner of fascinating wildlife, including black bears, elk and deer. Nature lovers will be enthralled by the sheer number of animals on view, and bird watchers will be delighted by the many birds that call these mountains their home.
In fact there is so much to see and do in the Great Smoky Mountains national park that many visitors find themselves returning year after year for a new adventure. From hiking and fishing to horseback riding and camping, there are plenty of great activities the entire family can enjoy.
Those who love to hike will find no shortage of trails in this well maintained national park. Boasting more than 800 miles of trails – ranging from easy beginner trails to challenging terrain suitable for only the most experienced adventurers – the Great Smoky Mountains is the perfect place for visitors to walk away from the stresses of everyday life.
While out on those hikes visitors are sure to be rewarded with many sightings of the local wildlife. These mountains are home to many different animals, from large animals like deer, bear and elk to smaller residents like reptiles, amphibians and insects. The biodiversity in the park is one of its many treasures, and one that nature lovers will certainly appreciate.
As is true for any wilderness area, hikers should take the proper precautions before heading out. This includes checking in with park officials, providing friends and family members with an itinerary and allowing enough time to return prior to nightfall. The average speed on hiking trails throughout the park is 1.5 miles per hours, and hikers should keep this figure in mind when planning how far to travel when night is approaching.
Hikers should also be aware that the many backcountry trails in the park demand additional caution. These trails are allows to exist in a natural state, and mother nature can through up many barriers, including fallen trees, swollen rivers and more. Only experienced hikers who are up to the challenge should embark on these difficult and potentially dangerous trails.
Of course hiking is not the only activity in the Great Smoky Mountains national park. Outdoor enthusiasts of all kinds love to vacation in the Great Smoky Mountains national park, and fishermen seem to especially enjoy its beauty. The park is home to more than 2,000 miles of streams, making it a fisherman’s paradise. Visitors to the park can enjoy a number of great fishing adventures, including secluded streams perfect for trout fishing and larger streams running with small mouth bass. The park allows fishing year round from 30 minutes prior to sunrise to 30 minutes after the sun has set.