Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials will implement a temporary, weekday closure of Alum Cave Trail and associated parking lots during February to accommodate the replacement of two foot-log bridges near the Arch Rock area. The area will be closed weekly on Monday through Thursday from Feb. 8 through Feb. 25. The trail will be fully open each week on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, along with President’s Day on Monday, Feb. 15.
Alum Cave Trail is one of the most popular trails in the park and these foot-log bridges provide safe crossings over the boulder-strewn river. The bridges have suffered significant decay due to use and weather since the last trail rehabilitation effort in 2016. In order to efficiently replace the foot-log bridges along the narrow trail corridor, a full closure is necessary for the safety of the crew and visitors. Hikers can still reach Mt. Le Conte and the Le Conte Shelter by using one of the other trails to the summit. The Boulevard, Bull Head, Rainbow Falls, and Trillium Gap trails all lead to Mt. Le Conte, but hikers should plan carefully and check daily for weather-related road closures that may restrict access to trailheads.
For more information about hiking in the park, please visit the park’s website at https://www.nps.gov/grsm/planyourvisit/hiking.htm or call the Backcountry Office (865) 436-1297.
– National Park Service release