Great Smoky Mountains National Park reopen roads, facilities with minimal damage

GATLINBURG, Tenn. (WATE) — The Great Smoky Mountains National Park closed roads and trails over the weekend following a high wind advisory that was a result of the remnants of Hurricane Irma.

Tuesday, the park started opening roads and facilities at 6:00 a.m. Crews said they are continuing to clear fallen trees and limbs along roadway and assess campgrounds and facilities.

The park said Sugarlands Visitor Center, Oconaluftee Visitor Center, Little River Road, Laurel Creek Road, Cades Cove Loop Road, Foothills Parkway West, Foothills Parkway East, Greenbrier, Cosby and Tremont have reopened. Newfound Gap Road, as well as several other roads and campgrounds, remain closed.

Related: Great Smoky Mountain National Park announces closures ahead of Irma

WATE 6 Storm Team meteorologist Ken Weathers said  the park experienced sustained winds of 33 miles per hour and wind gusts up to 66 miles per hour at Clingmans Dome. He said the park received .4 to .7 inches of rain.

Rangers said stream gauges reported little rise in park streams except for Cataloochee Creek which rose over 1 foot overnight, but has since stabilized. They said hikers should expect downed trees and limbs along trails especially at the higher elevations.

For more information about road conditions on main park roadways, visit the park’s website.

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