4 Fascinating Facts About the Great Smoky Mountains
It is no surprise that the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is one of the most visited parks in the United States. Visitors love to come back time and time again to see how this iconic landmark’s beauty changes with the seasons. It is a must-see attraction that you need to visit when you stay with us. For now, get to know this area a little better! Here are 4 fascinating facts about the Great Smoky Mountains:
1. They Have Been Around For a Long Time
They may not look like it at first glance, but did you know that the Great Smoky Mountains are estimated to be between 200 and 300 million years old? This makes them one of the oldest mountain ranges in the world! The age of a mountain is determined by examining the rock formations. Other landmarks such as trees can be helpful in this process as well. In fact, one-third of the trees in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park are over 100 years old. Even so, the breathtaking views from the top of the mountain show no age. They will remain timeless and beautiful for years to come!
2. The Great Smoky Mountains Have Over 2,900 Miles of Streams
The abundant land in the Great Smoky Mountains means that there is room for a variety of activities, one of which is fishing. If you love to fish, you’re in luck if you come to the Great Smoky Mountains because they hold over 2,900 miles of streams. Along with being pretty to look at, these streams serve a vital function as a habitat to many creatures. They house one of the last populations of wild trout in the eastern United States. Overall, fish are very abundant here. All the streams remain at or near their carrying capacity and provide great opportunities for fishing year round!
3. There is a Reason Why the Great Smoky Mountains Are Smoky
There is a reason why the Great Smoky Mountains appear to be smoky, and it’s not fire. The smokiness is naturally caused by thousands of plants in the area. They release a blue-colored substance called a volatile organic compound, or VOC for short. This characteristic prompted the Cherokee Indians to refer to the mountains as Shaconage, meaning “place of blue smoke.”
4. The John Oliver Cabin is the Oldest Historical Structure in the Park
Some parts of the Great Smoky Mountains were once home to thriving communities. As you walk through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, you can see some historical structures that have been preserved such as houses and churches. The John Oliver cabin is the first historical structure you will see as you drive down Cades Cove Loop Road. It is older than most of the structures in the park. In the 1820’s, John Oliver and his wife built the house when they were the first permanent settlers to Cades Cove. The house itself is unique because it is held together by gravity and notched corners.
We hope you learned something from these fascinating facts about the Great Smoky Mountains. We would be happy to provide a comfortable place to stay after you explore everything that these beautiful mountains have to offer! Start planning your trip by exploring all of our Pigeon Forge large cabins and their amenities.