Gatlinburg is renowned throughout the country for its wintertime sporting atmosphere, including snowboarding, downhill skiing, and cross-country skiing. While people typically think of downhill skiing when they think of skiing in general, cross country skiing is just as invigorating and allows you to explore the snow-capped sights of Gatlinburg. Read on below to learn more about cross country ski in Gatlinburg!
Ski Your Way Through a Winter Wonderland
Tucked away inside of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a fantastic cross-country skiing trail known as Clingmans Dome Road. Normally open to vehicles for most of the year, this road closes during the winter season and transforms into an informal cross country skiing trail where you can ski directly on the snow-blanketed road. It’s a hidden treasure known primarily to locals only, but if you inquire with park staff about cross country skiing locations, they will surely point you in the direction of Clingmans Dome Road.
Another great locale for cross country skiing is Blue Ridge Parkway. Similarly to Clingmans Dome Road, Blue Ridge Parkway is closed to vehicles during the winter season.
Nearby Clingmans Dome Road is the Newfound Gap. This area is famous for its fantastic skiing due to the lack of snowplowing here. However, the weather conditions and lack of plowing can lead to Newfound Gap Road being closed as many as fifteen to twenty times per winter season, so it’s essential to check ahead of time and make sure it’s currently open. If you’re lucky enough to visit when the Newfound Gap is open, you’ll be rewarded with ample snow and stunning views to complement your cross country skiing experience. Enjoy the ethereal backdrop of icicles hanging off of the immense rockfaces that line the road.
While Ober Gatlinburg is a mecca for downhill skiing in the southeastern U.S., much of the area around Gatlinburg—particularly inside of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park—is ideally suited for cross country skiing. And if you choose to cross country ski primarily at Clingmans Dome Road or the Newfound Gap, the Nordic Ski Patrol keeps a close watch, ready to help skiers and perform search and rescue operations.
Cross Country Ski Gatlinburg!
For more details on cross country skiing and other exciting activities you can enjoy in Gatlinburg, contact our office and discuss reserving your lodgings in one of our pristine vacation rental cabins today! Learn about cross country ski near Gatlinburg.