Saturday, December 14, 2013

Essentials for the Smokies Hiker

Below are a couple of stocking stuffers for anyone interested in hiking in the Great Smoky Mountains. With more than 800 miles of trails in the park, detailed topographical maps and hiking trail guides are great ways for hikers to discover new trails and new destinations in the Smokies:

Hiking Great Smoky Mountains National Park, by local hiker and outdoor photographer Kevin Adams, covers more than 80 hikes in the Smokies. The guide features photos, up-to-date trail information, trail maps, elevation profiles, clear directions from major access points, difficulty and traffic ratings for each hike, vacation planning, a hiker's checklist, and quick reference trail highlights.


National Geographic now has two separate Trails Illustrated Maps for the Great Smoky Mountains - in addition to the old map. National Geographic has divided the Park in two sections, thus allowing each map to show much greater detail. The original map, which covered the entire Park, had a scale 1:70,000. The two new maps now have a scale of 1:40,000 (1” = .6 miles) and provide much greater detail such as backcountry campsites, footbridges, fords and stream crossings, nature/interpretive trails, as well as detailed trail mileages.

The map for the western section of the Park includes the Cades Cove, Elkmont and Fontana Lake areas.

The map for the eastern section includes Clingmans Dome, Mt. LeConte, Newfound Gap Road, Big Creek, Oconaluftee and the Cataloochee areas.

Coverage Highlights Areas and places featured in this map series include: the Appalachian Trail, Benton Mackaye Trail, and the Mountains-to-Sea Trail. The maps also include scenic overlooks and roadside pull-outs.

Of course the original map, which covers the entire Park, is still available as well.

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To see our full library of hiking and travel guides for the Great Smoky Mountains, Blue Ridge Parkway, Appalachian Trail and the surrounding Southern Appalachian region, please visit our Amazon store by clicking here.

As always, thanks for your support!


Jeff
Hiking in the Smokies

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