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Thread: Camping on the Smoky rivers??

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Maynardville, TN
    Posts
    23

    Default Camping on the Smoky rivers??

    Is it illegal to camp by the rivers in the Smokies?? Me and my buddies are students and dont really have the money to rent a cabin, or even a guide. We live to far away to just make a day's trip of it and probably need to stay. Our ideal situation would be to get there on a Friday and hike to a remote spot and set up camp and fish the area's waters. Is this possible, and if so, is it dangerous because of bears?? Thanks for all the help guys..

    Ryan

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Greeneville, TN
    Posts
    751

    Default

    Below is a link to the GSMNP information on camping in the Park.


    http://www.nps.gov/grsm/planyourvisit/carcamping.htm

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    The Glades
    Posts
    573

    Default

    as long as you get your permit and camp only in a designated site you are good....don't be like the 4 that went into rainbow cave and had to be rescued....the park likes regs followed. permit is free, some must be reserved, but do not go backcountry without getting permits.......the citations can be very unpleasant and will follow you.
    further back country info 865-436-1291
    sam
    Last edited by sammcdonald; 03-23-2008 at 07:47 PM. Reason: add
    I started with nothing, and I have most of it left.
    www.angelfire.com/film/samsfotosafari

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Maynardville, TN
    Posts
    23

    Smile

    Ok, thanks for all the useful information guys. I have a few more questions though.. I was looking into the campground maps and found that the closest place for me to get a permit would be at the Sugarlands Office. Okay, if I go there and get a permit, is this where I will camp?? Or do I have the option of going anywhere, as long as it is in the grounds? And when they consider it "back-country", I understand that there is still boundaries to camp, but how close can I get to the river? And will there be rangers walking around at nights checking on us to make sure we are fine or are we just kinda alone?? I am sorry for all the questions, but I looked on the site and couldnt find the answer to some of the things I really wanted to know. Thanks in advance..

    Ryan

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Townsend, Tennessee
    Posts
    1,397

    Default

    Ryano,

    You have many options. You can camp at Elkmont or Smokemont Campgrounds for a fee but you will be near the rivers or right on them. You can camp at Cataloochee and be on that stream. These are developed campgrounds in the Park. Cades Cove is close to some streams. The backcountry offers many opportunities to camp on a stream. They are everywhere in this 1/2 million acre park. Send me an e-mail and I'll send you a free map of the Park. Please include your mailing address. Pineman gave you a link that will probably answer your questions. There is not enough room here to list all of the on-stream backcountry sites. The GSMNP is full of them. You could start with the map or the website and if you have any specific questions call the shop and we will try to answer them. You can get a backcountry permit and camp in any backcountry site in the Park. Permits are available at other locations as well. I have seen very few rangers or people in the backcountry sites that I use. Sometimes we are the only people there. It depends on the time of year of course and the campsite.

    Byron

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    The Glades
    Posts
    573

    Default

    also www.nps.gov/grsm will give you info, a small map, and regs.....
    may have duplicated info...but........if you go back country, get your FREE permit. there are more rangers this year and the emphasis is on enforcement.
    I started with nothing, and I have most of it left.
    www.angelfire.com/film/samsfotosafari

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