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 > Best Route through the Smokies

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howdy35

Athens, Texas

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Posted: 01/17/20 09:48pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Looking for advice going from Gatlinburg to Ashville NC. Anyone made that trip and know of the best road? Is 441 across the Smokies any good for a Diesel Pusher with Toad? Planning for the summer-fall of 2020. Thanks for any advice. Arnold, Happy travels.


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rgatijnet1

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Posted: 01/18/20 04:33am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I did it with a gasser pulling a toad. I am sure that a DP should make it without any issues.

accsys

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Posted: 01/18/20 04:51am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If it were me, I would take I-40. You definitely DO NOT want to take US 19 between Cherokee and Maggie Valley. US 74 from 441 just south of Cherokee to US 19 north of Waynesville is a good ride but you will wind up on I-40 regardless.


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JoeH

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Posted: 01/18/20 06:26am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

accsys wrote:

If it were me, I would take I-40. You definitely DO NOT want to take US 19 between Cherokee and Maggie Valley. US 74 from 441 just south of Cherokee to US 19 north of Waynesville is a good ride but you will wind up on I-40 regardless.

I agree with above. 441 to Cherokee is full of gawkers and very tight turns and grades. 19 to Maggie Valley is not a good road for a coach, although I've been on worse, but certainly not fun. I-40 is the way to go.


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fishingbob61

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Posted: 01/18/20 07:33am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I-40 all the way.

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Horsedoc

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Posted: 01/18/20 07:37am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You would be headed too far south to do the 441 route. Go up to I-40 and take a right [emoticon]

rgatijnet1

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Posted: 01/18/20 08:00am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Horsedoc wrote:

You would be headed too far south to do the 441 route. Go up to I-40 and take a right [emoticon]


Yes, it is 6 miles farther to take 441 rather than I40 but you would miss some of the best scenery in the Smoky Mountains.

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Posted: 01/18/20 08:06am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

It depends on what you want. Beautiful scenery take 441 and enjoy. Fast route take die-40. Although the turns on that route at highway speeds is not relaxing. IDE rather take 441 even though it is a bit out of the way!


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crawford

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Posted: 01/19/20 03:18pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I live here don't take 441 you will be sorry with all the switch backs and narrow rds for a suv ok but that's it.


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kohldad

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Posted: 01/20/20 05:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Unless you are familiar and comfortable with mountain driving, I wouldn't recommend it. Once you pass Sugarlands Visitor Center @ 1,480', it's 13.3 miles constant up to Newfoundland Gap @ 5,040'. On the way down you drop to 2,800' in 8.4 miles before becoming more gradual decent for the remaining 7.4 miles to Oconaluftee Visitor Center. Then you still have to deal with 19 and it's ups/downs to Asheville.

You can figure about 1.5 hour via I40 or 3 hours via 441 because while it isn't that much further, you will be a lot slower.

I go over the mountain frequently for the last 40 years but I definitely don't go out of my way to do it. Only if I'm in GA and headed to Elkmont with a stop at Smokemount will I usually take 441.

Since you will be in Gatlinburg to start with, make sure you take a day to drive up to Clingmans Dome in the car so you can stop at the overlooks on the way up and down. Then you can decide yourself.

* This post was edited 01/20/20 10:34am by kohldad *


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