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Old 06-04-11, 09:02 AM   #1
apesrunner58
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Riding in Gatlinburg, TN

I will be staying in Gatlinbury for 4 days. Middle of June. Has any here rode there? Any suggestions on routes?

thanks
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Old 06-04-11, 09:28 AM   #2
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Gatlinburg, Tennessee, maybe? Nice area, rolling hills.
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Old 06-04-11, 09:59 AM   #3
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Gatlinburg, Tennessee, maybe? Nice area, rolling hills.
Yes Tennessee
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Old 06-04-11, 10:15 AM   #4
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I've never rode this route but many people have mentioned it. It's in the park.

http://www.nps.gov/grsm/planyourvisit/cadescove.htm
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Old 06-04-11, 11:48 AM   #5
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Cades Cove is nice. I've been there, just never ridden it. It would be fairly flat, but the ride from Gatlinburg would be hilly & busy with cars.
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Old 06-04-11, 08:35 PM   #6
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Having lived up the road in the Tri-Cities area, I can truthfully say the best thing that ever happened to Gatlinburg was building the by-pass around it!
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Old 06-05-11, 04:39 AM   #7
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What Airdog said. Lots of very excellent rides all around it but the city is very congested and has been developed...well..not to my tastes.
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Old 06-05-11, 08:27 AM   #8
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I've never rode this route but many people have mentioned it. It's in the park.

http://www.nps.gov/grsm/planyourvisit/cadescove.htm
I've never ridden that but it is a beautiful 11 mile loop, mostly flat and should be a nice ride.

Around Gatlinburg, there is lots of car traffic and serious hills. I've never tried to ride the area even though it is fairly close to me (40 mi) because of the congestion.

The Foothills Parkway over by Townsend is maybe 20 miles from Gatlinburg and is a nice climb (2000 ft elevation gain in 7 mi) I've done a few times.
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Old 06-05-11, 09:09 AM   #9
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First rode a [rental] tandem with my wife/stoker, when we camped at Cades Cove three decades ago.
Spent a few days there several years ago and were impressed, in a bad way, by the auto traffic in and around GSMNP.
Gatlinburg was interesting but, as previously mentioned, congested and touristy.
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Old 06-05-11, 10:17 AM   #10
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Go to Cades Cove on Wed or Sat mornings. The road is closed to cars until 10am. I try to get there before 8am. There are some short but steep hills on the loop so be prepared for those. Watch out for people dismounting in the middle of the road and not expecting anyone else to be able to ride up. The road has just been repaved so it is quite nice. It's not a loop to speed around but to take your time, look at the views, spot the animals and enjoy being there.

You can try the Foothills Parkway but I would go some distance away from Gatlinburg. It has many climbs and no services so be prepared. I wouldn't recommend US441 through the Park or the Little River Road for riding this time of year. Just too many cars. I suppose if you got an alpine start it might not be too bad. Most tourists get stuck at the Dennys breakfast bar until later in the morning. The climb up to Clingman's Dome out of Newfound gap is a nice one, about 7 miles each way. Again, go very early and have a flashing light on your bike.

I don't know the Tenn. side roads all that well but my opinion of Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge and Sevierville is not suitable for public consumption. If you drive over to the NC side you can ride up the BRP from its start just outside Cherokee. It's a long 10 miles climb from there with no water or services and 5 very dark tunnels to ride through. I do that climb on a regular basis though usually not in the summer.
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Old 06-06-11, 04:02 PM   #11
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+1 on everything BikeWNC said. Just came back from Townsend (just over the mountain from Gatlinburg) last week; the trip was a success because we never got as far as Gatlinburg.

I'd say your best bet is to ride before breakfast. Even on Memorial Day weekend, there's virtually no traffic on the park roads until 9:00 (may be a half hour earlier near the big city of Gatlinburg), except on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Then there's an early rush hour as everybody from within 60 miles drives over to Cades Cove.

The Cove is worth it on a bike, beautiful scenery, rolling hills, all uphill coming back to the start of the loop. But if you want to turn into a frustrated cager, try to deal with the motorized traffic when they let cars and trucks onto the loop.
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Old 06-08-11, 11:26 AM   #12
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I don't know about the trails and roads...but watch out for those two guys "kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer". One of them answers to the name, Sue!!
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