By Leif Palmer
Posted on February 16, 2022
Spring isn't far off, but if history is any predictor, we're probably not done with winter weather quite yet in the Great Smoky Mountains. In fact, some of the most powerful winter storms we've received in East Tennessee have occurred in March, so we're probably not out of the woods yet. With that in mind, we thought we'd pass along some ideas for making the most of whatever wintry weather that may happen to come our way in the next four weeks or so.
For example, the other three seasons in the Smokies are known for their beautiful landscapes, ranging from the lush green foliage of spring and summer to the colorful transition of autumn. But mountain views in winter are unique and beautiful in their own right. In fact, with all the leaves on the deciduous trees fallen for the season, visitors are able to actually see things that they might have otherwise missed the rest of the year. Here are our recommendations for where to go when you're in search of the best scenic wintertime views.
You don't have to travel far from Gatlinburg to get beautiful bird's-eye views of the mountains, and the snow-dusted peaks create a stunning backdrop for downtown, which is snuggled into the valley below. There are several pullout points along this route, which runs from just north of the city limits to just south of the city limits, near the entrance to Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
If you choose to stay in a chalet, cabin or other type of rental property up in the mountains, you can actually wake up to some pretty impressive views of the Great Smoky Mountains. And with hundreds of properties in the area to choose from, you can pick the rental that best suits your needs and also has the views you came to the Smokies for. And thanks to our Gatlinburg downtown parking, heading into town to visit all the attractions, shops and restaurants is a cinch.
No one can say that the attractions surrounding Gatlinburg don't make the most of the area's mountainous terrain. Destinations like Ober Gatlinburg, SkyLift Park, The Gatlinburg Space Needle and Anakeesta are all well situated to deliver unforgettable views of the town and the majestic Smokies in the near background. And each has plenty of options for family fun while you're there.
This area of the national park takes you into the higher altitudes and gives you some of the most impressive views of the region. Along your 16-mile journey from Gatlinburg, you'll see towering peaks and rolling valleys and pass through tunnels that are cut into the mountainsides. Any time you plan to travel deep into the park or into the higher elevations in winter, it's a good idea to check with the National Park Service to make sure your intended route is open to traffic. You can follow them on Twitter @SmokiesRoadsNPS to get the latest information.
About Leif Palmer
Leif Palmer loves residing in Gatlinburg. He is an avid outdoorsman: rowing for exercise on the lake, trail hiking, and free climbing rocks in the mountains. He indulges his arty side by periodically beating up pieces of marble by sculpting. He is always frustrated by his inability to sink long putts, and hates his curly hair (but his wife loves it). Leif has been known to muster enough courage to change a diaper, and hopes his son will become a chip off the old block.