Panorama of Smoky Mountains and low clouds
Great Smoky Mountains

Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Red and green fall leaves
Fall in Great Smoky Mountain National Park

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park, located in Tennessee and North Carolina, has a more gentle beauty than the rugged peaks and deep canyons of the national parks in the Western United States. The mountains are older and greener in the spring and summer than those out west. In the fall the colors are red, yellow, orange compared to the mostly yellow found out west.

Fall colors and stream in Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Fall in Great Smoky Mountain National Park
Mingus Mill Great Smoky Moubtains
Mingus Mill
Church in Cades Cove, Great Smoky Moubtains National Park
Church in Cades Cove

The Smokies also show the hand of man. Abandoned farms, churches, schools, and old mills provide a memory of what was here before the park was founded. Some of the churches are still used and every so often a new grave is dug in the church yard.

Much of the park is wilderness and can only be reached by hiking. The Appalachian Trail goes trough the park. But you don't have to hike very far to reach much of the beauty of the park. And there is even a motor nature trail that provides a wonderful experience.