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Whats Gatlinburg/Smoky Mountains like in February?

Bartlett, Tennessee
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Whats Gatlinburg/Smoky Mountains like in February?

Me and a friend are planning a Girls Trip in February.

I havent been in Feb. but I have been in the Winter for Christmas so Im wondering if most restaurants and stores will be open.I wasnt planning on coming back so soon but she would like to going during the Winter(why I dont know).We plan on going up to Cades Cove and Ober for snow tubing since it was so much fun and do a little shopping.

I know the weather is usually bad up there in Feb.but going to take our chance.

Is it crazy to come that time of the year since it will be so cold?

Virginia
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1. Re: Whats Gatlinburg/Smoky Mountains like in February?

We like February because as long as you're not there for Valentine's day, then its not crowded at all. We haven't stayed in Gatlinburg in a while but the last time we stayed in February(2008) we were at Greystone Lodge. The only problem that I saw was that a lot of the restaurants close earlier. We were out walking through town around 8 and we didn't want to walk far so we ended up at Shoney's because a lot of other stuff had closed already. Other than worrying about the weather, Feb and March our some of our favorite months to visit. We've driven through Cades Cove in February and not saw much wildlife but it was still fun.

Pigeon Forge...
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2. Re: Whats Gatlinburg/Smoky Mountains like in February?

The first time I went back in 2004 was either the last week in January or the last week in February (I don't remember which) and it was decent. No snow that I remember, temperatures weren't too bad, and actually even somewhat warm during the afternoons. Well warm as compared to the Midwest during that time of year. But I do remember that the shops and restaurants did seem to shut down pretty early. I'd say you'll be fine as long as you pick a nice hotel to stay at, so that if you don't have much to do in the evenings, you can enjoy your hotel, or maybe go see a show or something in the evenings. Town should be pretty quiet from what I remember. It'll most likely be more of 'what you make it' during that time of year.

Bartlett, Tennessee
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3. Re: Whats Gatlinburg/Smoky Mountains like in February?

Im watching this show on Direct Tv Nat.Geo. channel and they are talking about The Appalachian Trail.It's about Scientists and Volunteers work to keep the 2175 mile Appalachian Trail Wild.Now Im really wanting to go hiking but I dont think Feb. would be a good time to go.

deputy we havent decided on a hotel yet but I want something in the middle of the strip that way we will be close to both ends of the strip.Im looking at Feb.27th -March 3rd.I think anytime before that will be too cold and snowy.

Bladenboro, North...
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4. Re: Whats Gatlinburg/Smoky Mountains like in February?

CG,

I have read several good books recently on my kindle about thru-hikers hiking the entire Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine. The books talk about hiking through the Great Smoky Mountains and hitch hiking from Newfound Gap into Gatlinburg. If you enjoy reading, these are great books. My favorite was about two sisters hiking the AT barefoot. These books give you a very good idea how it would be to hike the AT.

Bartlett, Tennessee
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5. Re: Whats Gatlinburg/Smoky Mountains like in February?

carolinagirl1958 Im not ready to take on the AP yet.I am a new hiker and im going to take it slow and do a couple of them every trip.Me and my husband did Cataract Falls and Fighting Creek in November if you count them as hikes.We are going to take on Laurel Falls next and just build our way up.It would be a couple of years before we did hikes like to Mt. LeConte.We are just in the learning stages right now.

Bladenboro, North...
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6. Re: Whats Gatlinburg/Smoky Mountains like in February?

CG,

I would not hike the AT either. However, I enjoy reading about other AT thru-hikers adventures. I also would like to hike all the way to the top of Mt. leconte someday if I could get reservations to stay overnight at the lodge. My husband and I hiked to Arch Rock on the Alum Cave Trail to Mt. Leconte last fall. Hopefully, we can hike further next time.

Bartlett, Tennessee
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7. Re: Whats Gatlinburg/Smoky Mountains like in February?

The show I watched earlier showed a 70 year old man and he hiked from Maine to Ga in about 6 months the whole legnth of the AP amazing and hats off to him.I would love to hike to Arch Rock on the Alum Cave Trail.I have seen alot of beautiful pictures.I would too hike up to Mt.LeConte only if I stayed at the lodge.Maybe one day who knows.

What is the name of the books?

Tuscaloosa, Alabama
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8. Re: Whats Gatlinburg/Smoky Mountains like in February?

CG, I just looked back at our snow pictures to see what dates we had snow. This only includes the dates we were at our cabin so there could have been other snow events:

2-17-07

2-27-08

2-22-09

3-1-09 Out of these four dates, this was the biggest snow for us.

Keep in mind that this winter has been much snowier than any in recent years. I just read on the Mt. LeConte blog that they recorded 53" of snow at Mt. LeConte in Dec. 2010 compared to 34" in December 2009 (the average for December is only 15" so both Decembers were well above average).

January, February and March 2010 all experienced above average snowfall also. It's anyone's guess what will happen the rest of this winter but this month (January 2011) looks like it will exceed the average and possibly exceed last year.

If you're wanting to come for shopping and such, a late February/early March trip should be ok but if you want to hike I would wait a few more weeks. You may also miss some of the shows being open - I think they re-open about the first week of March.

Bladenboro, North...
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9. Re: Whats Gatlinburg/Smoky Mountains like in February?

CG,

My favorite books about hiking the AT are Barefoot Sisters Southbound and Barefoot Sisters Walking Home. The first book , Barefoot Sisters Southbook, is about the sisters hiking the AT from Maine to Ga barefoot and the second book, Barefoot Sisters Walking Home, is about the sisters walking back home from Ga to Maine. These are very good books. Also, I read AWOL On the AT which is very good. I read these books on my kindle from Amazon.com , however, I think they are available in paperback also.

I will have to keep looking to see if the TV program about the AT is showing on my Nat Geo cable station. I would love to see it.

Bladenboro, North...
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10. Re: Whats Gatlinburg/Smoky Mountains like in February?

CG,

You can download the PC for Kindle application on your laptop, and read these AT books on your laptop from Amazon.com. I read several kindle books on my laptop before I got my kindle for Christmas. I forgot to mention this in my earlier post.