Great Smoky Mountains National Park
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Newfound Gap Trail - The Jump Off
At an elevation of 5,046 feet, the infamous Appalachian trail straddles Tennessee and North Carolina via the Newfound Gap in the Smokies. This 3 mile stretch of the Appalachian Trail will give you a sense of what the pass through hikers experience on their journey trek from Georgia to Maine. Most of the trail is still covered in ice packed snow early March but offer scenic overviews like the one pictured in this highlight. This is a view from the Jump Off—a vantage point from the main trail that branches off to the right for another 0.3 miles. The best time to get a view like this is just as the trees are starting to bud—mid March through early April—otherwise your view will be obstructed by the high bushes that grow here. Prepare for a 10 degree drop in temperature at this altitude. A lot of backpackers start their trek from this point so you may see a lot of them on your day hike here.
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