Sunday, December 12, 2010

Winter weather road closures in Smokies

The winter storm that passed through the Smokies yesterday and overnight has shut down most of the roads in the park. As of 7:30 this morning, the National Weather Service website is reporting that 10 inches of snow are on the ground at Newfound Gap, and 8 inches atop Mt. LeConte.

Here are the current road closures:

• Newfound Gap Road (US-441) between Gatlinburg and Cherokee
• Gatlinburg Bypass Road
• Little River Road
• Cherokee Orchard Road
• Wears Cove
• Old NC-284 between Big Creek and Cataloochee
• Cataloochee Entrance Road
• Foothills Parkway
• Lakeview Drive
• The Cades Cove Loop Road is closed due to downed trees, but is expected to open later this morning.


The National Weather Service has also posted a Winter Storm Warning for the Smokies region, that is in effect until 1 a.m. Tuesday morning:

WINTER STORM TO PRODUCE SIGNIFICANT SNOW ACCUMULATION...GUSTY WINDS AND VERY COLD TEMPERATURES...

ACCUMULATIONS: EXPECT TOTAL SNOW ACCUMULATION BY MONDAY EVENING OF 2 TO 6 INCHES IN THE LOWER ELEVATIONS...WITH 8 TO 15 INCHES POSSIBLE OVER THE HIGHER MOUNTAINS.

A STRONG LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM WILL TRACK ACROSS THE SOUTHERN GREAT LAKES REGION TODAY...PUSHING MUCH COLDER AIR INTO OUR REGION BEHIND A DEPARTING COLD FRONT. ANY LINGERING RAIN SHOWERS WILL CHANGE TO QUICKLY SNOW SHOWERS THIS MORNING...THEN SNOW SHOWERS WILL PERSIST THROUGH MONDAY. GUSTY WINDS CAN BE EXPECTED AS WELL...WHICH MAY MAY PRODUCE BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW IN THE HIGHER ELEVATIONS. DANGEROUSLY LOW WIND CHILL VALUES ARE ALSO EXPECTED AT TIMES.

To stay up-to-date on weather forecasts and conditions in the Smokies, click here.

For the latest road reports, call the park office at (865) 436-1200.



Jeff
HikingintheSmokys.com

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