Breaking News
More () »

Cades Cove is closed for the winter. Here are some hikes and drives to fulfill your outdoor adventure needs

Here is a list of some other options for seeing the wintry beauty of the Smokies while they work on construction projects.

TENNESSEE, USA — The wildlife in Cades Cove is enjoying a winter break while the Great Smoky Mountains National Park works on necessary construction projects.

Laurel Creek Road, the seven-mile access road from the Townsend Wye to Cades Cove is closed to all traffic, including pedestrians and cyclists, until Feb. 29. They also closed the main road to the Cataloochee Valley, Cove Creek Road, from Nov. 1 to Feb. 29, though there is a secondary way to access it.

RELATED: Cades Cove is closed for two months over the winter

That doesn't mean your winter outdoor adventures need to end. We put together a list of some other hikes and drives you can take. 

RELATED: What's your Smokies horoscope?


  • Laurel Falls, one of the most popular hiking trails in the Smokies; roundtrip is 2.6 miles 
  • Rainbow Falls, 5.4 miles roundtrip; ice formation builds around the falls during extended cold snaps
  • Alum Cave, 2.5 miles to the Alum Cave Bluffs; continuing on can take you all the way to Mt. LeConte

RELATED: Don't go on your next Smokies trip without trying these hiking hacks


  • Elkmont, explore preserved historic cabins; access to hiking trails

RELATED: Elkmont Will Shine: Cabins and conflict in the Smokies

  • Greenbrier, in the Cosby area; features picnic areas and trout fishing; access to several hiking trails
  • Newfound Gap, mountain views; scenic drives
  • Foothills Parkway, scenic drives; mountain views
  • Oconaluftee, in North Carolina; access to hiking trails; Mountain Farm Museum and Mingus Mill
  • Cataloochee, in North Carolina; historic buildings; wildlife viewing (including elk); peaceful mountain valley

RELATED: Rookie mistake: I learned the hard way what happens if you run out of gas in the Smokies

Of course, if you want to venture outside of the park, there are plenty of other options in East Tennessee.

RELATED: 10Trips: Ready to take a Tennessee day trip?

Check out our 10Travels playlist for more ideas:

RELATED: 'I'm just glad to be here' | Photographer survives a heart attack in the Smokies

RELATED: 'Helping people is the goal': Photographer teaches others so they can experience the Smokies

Paid Advertisement

Before You Leave, Check This Out