Great Smoky Mountains National Park
North Carolina, Tennessee
Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GRSM) has always been famous for its biological and scenic diversity. Yet rather than experience this natural abundance first hand, most visitors see much of it from their automobiles for only short periods of time. For example, more than 70 percent of the recreational activities undertaken in the park are pursued within a stone s throw of a roadway. For every hour spent behind the wheel, visitors spend only eight minutes outside their cars. Approximately 16 percent, or one in six visitors, never even turn off their engines during their visit to the Smokies.
While many present-day visitors recognize that motorways greatly influence their park experience, most are unaware that the history of GRSM has always been intimately linked to the history of its roads. Not only was the campaign to establish the park led by road boosters, but the debate over road construction in the Smokies became the pivotal issue influencing subsequent park development. Visitors can enhance their park experience by better understanding the very motor roads they are driving upon.
| Introduction | Acadia | Blue Ridge Parkway | Colonial Parkway | Generals Highway | George Washington Memorial Parkway | Great Smoky Mountains | Mount Rainier | Rock Creek and Potomac Parkway | Shenandoah's Skyline Drive | Southwest Circle Tour | Vicksburg | Yellowstone | Yosemite | Discover History |