Whether you’re hiking off the beaten path or exploring a historic homestead, there’s plenty of things in the Smoky Mountains to learn about and discover. If you’re planning to visit for a short stay or full vacation, some Great Smoky Mountain National Park facts that are shocking, entertaining or downright surprising. Before you visit, here are five things you didn’t know about the Great Smoky Mountains.
(Related: Take a Snapshot of the Smoky Mountains)
1. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park was established on June 15, 1934.
Although a National Park east of the was discussed and planned for years, the official establish date was June 15. That means this summer, the National Park is officially 80 years old!
2. The Great Smoky Mountains are home to more than 100 native species of trees.
The National Park is also home to more than 66 species of mammals, 200 species of birds and 80 types of amphibians and reptiles. Due to the park’s unique natural resources and diverse value, the Great Smoky Mountains have been named an International Biosphere Reserve and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
To learn more about the parks diverse wildlife, click the National Park link below.
3. 70 miles of the Appalachian Trail wind through the Smokies.
4. The most snowfall to ever hit the Smoky Mountains was nearly 9 feet.
During the Blizzard of ‘93, each of the five park stations reported record snowfall with no less than 53 inches and up to 9 feet in the higher elevations. Much of the park had to be closed down for over a week.
5. The National Park encompasses more than 520,000 acres.
Tennessee holds 244,000 acres, and North Carolina holds the remaining 276,000 acres. To put the size of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park into perspective, that’s over 800 square miles or 14,080 football fields!
Want to learn more Great Smoky Mountains National Park facts? Visit the area, and learn about the history and culture in person. Alpine Mountain Chalets offers affordable Smoky Mountain cabins and chalets just outside the National Park entrance for endless family adventure and education.
Give us a call at 888-783-0977 to speak to a reservationist, and begin planning your next stay in the Smokies.