Cades Cove Winter
December 11, 2021

Winter is one of the most magical times to visit the Smoky Mountains! The thing that makes this season so special is the opportunity to experience the snow covered mountains. While it is possible to see snow all throughout the Smokies, there are some hidden gem spots in the higher elevations that increase your chances! Here are 4 of the best places to see snow in the Smoky Mountains:

1. Alum Cave Trail

Alum Cave Trail

Winter hiking is one of the best ways to see snow in the Smokies. If you are looking for a rewarding winter hike, you can’t go wrong with Alum Cave Trail. If you are not a fan of cold weather, the good news is that this trail is only 2.3 miles long. Along the way, you will come to a couple of places that are excellent spots to take in the snowy views. One of those is Inspiration Point. Once you get to Alum Cave, the views become even more spectacular. When the weather is chilly, you are likely to see sparkling icicles hanging from the ledges of the bluff. The next time you are in the Smokies during the winter months, be sure to schedule in some time for hiking!

2. Cades Cove

As one of the most popular destinations in the Smokies, Cades Cove is one of the most unique places to take in the winter scenery. Weather permitting, Cades Cove Loop Road is open year round. The other good news about Cades Cove is you can take in all the marvelous views from the comfort of your car if you choose to. That means you can stay nice and toasty while still seeing the snow! However, if you want to get out and explore, there are plenty of historical buildings that you can hike to within the park. Be on the lookout for wildlife out playing in the snow, including white tailed deer and turkeys!

3. Newfound Gap

Car driving Newfound Gap Road

Newfound Gap is the road that connects Gatlinburg to Cherokee, and it travels right through the Smoky Mountains. Along the way, there are plenty of pull off areas where you can capture some amazing pictures of the snowy mountaintops and valleys. At nearly a mile high, Newfound Gap is significantly cooler than the surrounding areas, meaning they receive more snowfall. For example, if it is raining and cold in Gatlinburg, it might be snowing when you get to Newfound Gap. On average, the gap receives up to 69 inches of snow each year. Please note that if the snow is substantial, Newfound Gap Road may be closed for passenger safety.

4. Laurel Falls

Laurel Falls is one of the best places to see snow in the Smoky Mountains for families. The reason for this is because the trail is paved, making it less slick and more suitable for young children. When you reach the waterfall, be on the lookout for the spectacular ice formations that often accumulate on the waterfall. There is a crossing bridge right in front of the falls where you can get some amazing pictures of your family posing in front of the falls.

Now that you know some of the best places to see snow in the Smoky Mountains, be sure to check out this guide to weather in the Smokies so you know what to expect on your next visit! We hope to see you soon!