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Old 05-13-2014, 09:12 AM   #1
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Seeing the Smokies

Not sure the best way to see the Smokies. Will be in a 42' MH pulling a toad and looking to spend around a week in the Pigon Forge or Gatlinberg area on our way from AR to Myrtle Beach (IRV2 rally).

Suggestions on what to see, parks to stay in, roads to travel in toad and roads that would be ok in MH or to stay away from!

Length of stay is flexible and area is flexible as well.
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Old 05-13-2014, 11:11 AM   #2
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Here's what we did..

We did a sort of reverse last year of what you are planning. We started in Myrtle beach for a week, then came through the Smokies.

We spent some of our time in the NC side of the Smokies, and then finished up near Pigeon Forge.

We stayed in site 61 and 62 (friends) of this place in Pigeon Forge and really enjoyed it Map of Pine Mountain Pigeon Forge RV Park & Cabin Rentals Campground I highly recommend that place. It's in a near perfect location to all the Pigeon Forge activities. The stream behind those two sites is really tiny though--we were thinking "fishing" but it's just a tiny creak. Nice people there and a very clean, simple RV park.

We really liked the NC side of the Smokey's too, but had to make a last minute switch on our RV accommodations. We were going to stay at Sleepy Hollow RV Park but our friends arrived first and were very disappointed with that place--not large enough for 40' rigs (at least where we were), pretty much underwater (it rained a lot last summer), unacceptable sewer "hookups" that fed directly into the nearby stream, and the staff weren't friendly.

So instead, when we were in the NC side of the Smokeys, we stayed at the koa Cherokee / Great Smokies KOA | Camping in North Carolina | KOA Campgrounds and really liked it. THAT stream was good fishing too!
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Old 05-13-2014, 11:19 AM   #3
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Hi huntnski,
If there are adults only, consider The Dell as a place to stay. Go to Hidden Mountain | Cabin Types | The Dell RV and take a look. I suggest this because The Dell is located perfectly to minimize toad travel when seeing the area. For a site, with a view of the Smokies ask for lot 2615, 2601, 2603, in that order. The Dell offers peace and quiet while being a mile (no traffic mile) from the Parkway.

The SMNP has a variety of activities. East of Gatlinburg is the Sugar Land Visitors Center. Make this your first stop to get maps and advice. Some things to consider are:

Cades Cove - A driving tour through buildings of the 1800's. This is a day trip. Take water and snacks. The only place to eat is at the end of the tour at the CG store. The exit will be a left turn, to go to the restaurant make a right turn.

Clingmans Dome - A paved trail leads to the overlook. It is a steep trail.

Newfound Gap Overlook - This is right along the only main road (Rt. 441)

Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail - The turn to get to the trail is in downtown Gatlinburg. Nice single one way paved road. Overlooks and period buildings to see. Take water and snacks.

Along the Parkway are the shows. My favorites for you to consider are:
1. Smoky Mountain Opry - Broadway quality variety show. The Dell is behind the Opry (about a mile)
2. The Wonders Of Magic - Located in the Wonderworks building. Slight of hand magician (who is in the magician's hall of fame).
3. Lumberjack Feud - Dinner show. Get past the corny story. The reason I recommend this show is the performers are professional lumber jacks performing the feats of skill they use to compete in championship lumber jack competitions.

As to roads, all are doable with a coach and toad. For me, consider returning to I40 for the trip over the mountains.
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Old 05-13-2014, 11:43 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Statgeek View Post
We did a sort of reverse last year of what you are planning. We started in Myrtle beach for a week, then came through the Smokies.

We spent some of our time in the NC side of the Smokies, and then finished up near Pigeon Forge.

We stayed in site 61 and 62 (friends) of this place in Pigeon Forge and really enjoyed it Map of Pine Mountain Pigeon Forge RV Park & Cabin Rentals Campground I highly recommend that place. It's in a near perfect location to all the Pigeon Forge activities. The stream behind those two sites is really tiny though--we were thinking "fishing" but it's just a tiny creak. Nice people there and a very clean, simple RV park.

We really liked the NC side of the Smokey's too, but had to make a last minute switch on our RV accommodations. We were going to stay at Sleepy Hollow RV Park but our friends arrived first and were very disappointed with that place--not large enough for 40' rigs (at least where we were), pretty much underwater (it rained a lot last summer), unacceptable sewer "hookups" that fed directly into the nearby stream, and the staff weren't friendly.

So instead, when we were in the NC side of the Smokeys, we stayed at the koa Cherokee / Great Smokies KOA | Camping in North Carolina | KOA Campgrounds and really liked it. THAT stream was good fishing too!
We also stayed at the Cherokee/Great Smokies KOA last summer and really enjoyed it. Very nice park with very nice long, pull-through sites with concrete pads, patios and drives. Nestled in a valley so that it's very quiet and there are no interstates, towns or railroads close to it. Right next to the river and friendly helpful people.
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Old 05-13-2014, 12:06 PM   #5
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Check out the very new campground called Anchor Down just outside of Sevierville TN. It sits right on Douglas Lake and has spectacular views of the surrounding mountains and the lake. All paved roads, concrete pads, and beautiful fireplaces. We stayed up on the bluff overlooking the rest of the camp ground and lake. These have the best view but are slightly unlevel side to side. The owner has leveling boards for anyone who asks. That is such a minor inconvenient considering the views and how nice the owners are.
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Old 05-13-2014, 02:18 PM   #6
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Thanks to all replies, lots of good ideas!

What roads did you use to cross the mountains? As a reminder I'm in a 42' MH pulling a toad!
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Old 05-13-2014, 02:26 PM   #7
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If you plan to see the spectacular colours in the autumn, timing is everything.

Last autumn (2013) we came to early at the end of October. We did see the orange and red leaves, but had we arrived early November we would have seen much a more fantastic scenery. It will vary I am sure, and I believe it depends on the autumn temperatures.

We missed the best of "the great show" last year but never fear - we will be back some other time

42 foot and a toad is not a problem in general.
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Old 05-13-2014, 08:20 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danes-on-tour View Post
If you plan to see the spectacular colours in the autumn, timing is everything.

Last autumn (2013) we came to early at the end of October. We did see the orange and red leaves, but had we arrived early November we would have seen much a more fantastic scenery. It will vary I am sure, and I believe it depends on the autumn temperatures.

We missed the best of "the great show" last year but never fear - we will be back some other time

42 foot and a toad is not a problem in general.
We will miss the tree color. After the iRV2 national rally we will stop in Alabama till our 4th grandchild gets here, then catch the color of the Arkansas Forrest!
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