BLOUNT COUNTY, Tenn. – With more than 800 miles of maintained hiking trails that are full of beautiful wildlife, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a hiker’s dream. A vast selection of trails, rated from easy to strenuous, can take the average hiker from one or two hours to up to a week to hike. Hikers can hike to and from anywhere in the park using the park’s interconnecting trail system. This system includes 71 miles of the 2,100-mile Appalachian Trail, the main east-west trail through the park. The park also offers a series of quiet walkways typically one-half to three-quarters of a mile in length with a gradual incline. Rated mild to moderate in difficulty, several nature trails also are available for those with moderate skill levels and time commitments. Each nature trail features a box at its entrance that contains information on natural resources and cultural highlights found on that trail.
Hikers occasionally encounter the natives of the area. Bears, deer and wild European boars are just some of the animals inhabiting the park. Hikers should take precautions if they come in contact with wildlife.
For more information, visit www.SmokyMountains.org.
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