Monday, October 24, 2011

Three trails closed by April tornado reopen in Cades Cove

According to the Great Smoky Mountains website, three trails that have been closed in the Cades Cove area as a result of last April's tornado have been reopened. There are still two trails that remain closed.

The Cooper Road Trail, Rabbit Creek Trail and the Wet Bottom Trail are all officially open as of today. Backcountry Campsites 15 has also reopened.

The Beard Cane Trail and the Hatcher Mountain Trail (north of its intersection with Little Bottoms Trail) remain closed. Backcountry Campsites 3 and 11 remain closed as well.

According to the park website: "Two trails and campsites on the western end of the park are closed until further notice due to extensive damage caused by a EF-4 tornado."

Other backcountry closures you may want to be aware of:

• The parking area at the Curry Mountain trailhead on Little River Road has been closed for safety and resource protection purposes. Hikers should park in the nearby Metcalf Bottoms Picnic Area.

• Gunter Fork Trail closed due to landslides

• Laurel Gap Shelter is closed through November 13 for construction

• Backcountry Campsites 35 and 68 are closed due to bear activity


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