Great Smoky Mountains National Park offers access to the Tennessee portion of the Appalachian Trail, or “AT,” a favorite of hikers the world over. Great Smoky Mountains National Park, with more than 70 miles of crestline trail, features the highest elevations of the entire footpath, well above six thousand feet.
Tennessee has 293 miles of the Appalachian Trail, entering the state atop Doe Knob, exiting atop Holston Mountain. The longest stretch of grassy bald, Grassy Ridge, is just before the trails’s descent into Laurel Fork Valley.
Clingmans Dome is the highest point on the entire Appalachian Trail, where the trail reaches an elevation of 6,625 feet near the summit. The trail through the Smokies also has the most southern rainfall and snowfall, and many hikers are caught off guard by the snow and cold temperatures that the high elevation causes. Permits are required for overnight stays in the Smokies, and unless you are hiking through, you need reservations to use the shelters.
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