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WGA Member

Joined: 2009-11-22
Posts: 113
Location: West Bend Wi

PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2012 12:42 pm Reply with quote Back to top

we are going to go to the smoky mountains around sept. for our 25th ann. we honeymooned there and want to return and do lots of caches. will be around the gatlinburg area. any tips or advice like bear spray or any special thing needed for that area? is there any attractions that are cool to see? and when it gets close ill post again to see if any travel bugs want to ride along.
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WGA Member

Joined: 2005-06-07
Posts: 3190
Location: Lake country area, WI

PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2012 5:40 pm Reply with quote Back to top

What I do when traveling is shoot a couple of emails off to local (to the area I'm going) cachers and ask for tips and highlights. It works great.

At another mountain range 100 miles South of Gatlinburg I found a few great caches near Brevard NC.
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Team Deejay
WGA Member

Joined: 2005-10-02
Posts: 2402
Location: Rochester, WI, US

PostPosted: Wed Dec 12, 2012 8:46 am Reply with quote Back to top

Having gone to this area, I can tell you that the local caching scene is pretty dead. Most of the caches in the area were hidden long ago by visitors. That said, most of the caches in the park are virtuals, and most of those are worthwhile. Our MO was to go for a hiking virtual in the morning, drive around in the afternoon doing regular caches (lots of church caches and cemetery caches), and then finding a swimming hole late afternoon (try the river along the road entering the NP near Townsend.) I'd recommend staying somewhere other than Gatlinburg, as it is very commercial and not pleasant in my opinion.

Checking my favorites list, here are the caches I recommended:

I'd also recommend the virtuals at Clingman's Dome (a short, steep paved trail) and Grotto Falls (a 5.2 mile (round trip), moderate unpaved hike).

If you like day hiking, the following site will prove valuable:

Have fun and let me know if you have specific questions.

Team DeeJay
Dave and Julie 
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Team Honeybunnies
WGA Member

Joined: 2005-05-03
Posts: 1029
Location: Stevens Point,WI

PostPosted: Thu Dec 13, 2012 8:04 pm Reply with quote Back to top

We've spent a goodly bit of time in the Smokies over a couple of vacations now, and I can recommend quite a few of the virtuals in the park. Probably our most favorite is GCGYMA 1886 Turbine, a restored grist mill on the North Carolina side. The hike up to the summit of Mt. LeConte is fantastic, with GCGZ71 Alum Cave Bluff along the way, and GC53A5 Mt. LeConte at the summit. Sadly a really involved virtual that explored the area of the cabins at the top appears to be gone now. None of the caches in Cades Cove are particularly memorable, but the area is exactly what you think of when you think Smokey Mountains. The ones in Elkmont are fascinating just because of all the old abandoned lodges. Kind of a weird vibe.

Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge are the same vibe as the Wisconsin Dells. You can spend the entire time shopping, eating and missing out completely on the natural splendor that originally drew people to the area. It's there if it's your thing.

To the south traveling east out of Tellico Plains is the Cherohala Skyway, Highway 165. Spectacular views, caches available at most every scenic turnout, and some nice waterfalls (and caches) taking a side trip up the road along the Tellico River.

You'll have a great time. It's an amazing area.
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WGA Member

Joined: Apr 27, 2011
Posts: 17
Location: Sussex,WI

PostPosted: Sun Dec 30, 2012 10:53 pm Reply with quote Back to top

The ski resort in Gatlinburg has a cool virtual and a great view.

Scott Dallesasse 
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WGA Secretary
WGA Secretary

Joined: 2010-09-22
Posts: 3972
Location: Eau Claire

PostPosted: Mon Dec 31, 2012 8:56 am Reply with quote Back to top

The local artisan tour is pretty cool. I wish we could have visited when we knew about geocaching, it would have been a fun way to explore the area. But we stayed up on the Blue Ridge in some condos. It took a while to drive anywhere but it was a great experience. We managed to find this tiny little restaurant that served frog legs and the best hush puppies I've ever had. We stumbled upon it, not sure if I could ever find it again if I were trying. Have fun!

Not all who wander are lost, some are geocaching.

Disclaimer: This post and the contents of any links or images attached is the opinion of this poster and not that of the WGA or its Board of Directors. 
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WGA Member

Joined: 2011-02-22
Posts: 2523
Location: Ripon WI

PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2013 7:18 am Reply with quote Back to top

Now you can make WPs to find things again. YAY!

MapQuest and Google maps really need to start their directions on #5. Pretty sure everyone knows how to get out of their own neighborhood. 
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