Newfound Gap Road Drive is a 29.4 mile point-to-point trail located near Gatlinburg, Tennessee that offers scenic views and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for road biking and scenic driving and is accessible year-round.

Length29.4 miElevation gain3,910 ftRoute typePoint to point
Kid friendlyRoad bikingScenic drivingViewsNo dogs
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Drive across the mountains in the parks most-traveled road. In southern Appalachian vernacular, a gap is a low point in a mountain ridge. New Englanders call such places "notches" while westerners refer to them as mountain "passes." At an elevation of 5,046 feet, Newfound Gap is the lowest drivable pass through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The old road over the Smoky Mountains crossed at Indian Gap, located about 1.5 miles west of the current site. Newfound Gap's recognition as the lowest pass through the Great Smoky Mountains did not come until 1872. Arnold Henry Guyot, a Swiss geographer, measured many Southern Appalachian elevations. Mount Guyot, the second highest peak in the Smokies, takes his name. He used a simple barometer to measure changes in air pressure to calculate mountain heights. In most cases he was within 2-3 percent of current values. His work revealed Newfound Gap as the lowest pass through the mountains, displacing nearby Indian Gap. When the lower, easier crossing was discovered, it became known as the "newfound" gap. A new road followed, and it became the forerunner of Newfound Gap Road. A trip over the Newfound Gap Road has often been compared to a drive from Georgia to Maine in terms of the variety of forest ecosystems one experiences. Starting from either Cherokee, North Carolina or Gatlinburg, Tennessee, travelers ascend through cove hardwood, pine-oak, and northern hardwood forest to attain the evergreen spruce-fir forest at Newfound Gap (5,046'). This fragrant evergreen woodland is similar to the boreal forests of New England and eastern Canada.

Newfound Gap runs from Sugerlands Visitor Center near Gatlinburg, TN, up over the mountains and down to Cherokee, NC. Make sure you give yourself plenty of time to see all of the sites and to enjoy the different stops. Be sure to pull over for people that want to go faster then you

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Reviews (66)
Photos (587)
Activities (27)
Completed (374)
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Jason Williams
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Great!
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Cara B
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Scenic driving
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Jeffrey Tefel
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Closed

closed till March 31st .

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Chockalingam Senthilnathan
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Scenic drivingGreat!

Great scenic drive. Note however that the traffic becomes heavy on the way back to Gatlinburg in the evening and can take you a long time as it almost comes to a halt, or atleast it did around Thanksgiving. Luckily we were staying in Cherokee for that day and the drive towards Cherokee has no traffic.

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Aaron Brown
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Scenic drivingGreat!

Incredible. If you're intimidated by the dips and climbs and twists and turns just take your time and take advantage of the pull offs for great vantage points for photos

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Nicholas Morgan
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Hiking
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Hannah B
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Scenic drivingGreat!

Great drive! Took it to Clingman’s Dome from Gatlinburg and stopped at all the scenic overlooks. Fantastic views!

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Olivia Martin
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Hiking

This is ABSOLUTELY beautiful! Go on a clear day and stop at each view point. This is amazing!

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Nur Faisal
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Scenic drivingGreat!

The views from the overlooks are really amazing! Magnificent fall foliage!

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Valentina Pecoraro
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I like the road way! Beautiful sights! Be sure to read each of the points and DONT pass the 7mile to the best views!

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Stephanie Attanasio
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Beautiful overlook of the mountains! Relatively busy, but there are plenty of parking spaces.

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Matthew Redecker
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Scenic driving

Beautiful drive in the Roush!

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Živilė JG
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Scenic drivingGreat!

Very good to take it before sunset

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Rajat D
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Scenic driving

Beautiful drive across the smokies

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Matt Olson
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Hiking
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Jessi Koenig
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Scenic drivingGreat!

Such a beautiful drive. Lots of pull offs. Some of the BEST views of the area. Lots of traffic but not slow. (If that makes sense). Definitely a MUST if you come here.

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Tiffany A
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Took this drive in the middle of the day on a Tuesday and it was PACKED, but it was worth it. Beautiful drive.

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Lowan Tichenor
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Scenic driving

Great drive in Sevier and Swain counties! We only did half of of it to Clingmans Dome but the views are very pretty. I only gave it 4 stars because the windy roads made me carsick.

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Amanda McKenzie
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Scenic driving

Beautiful drive. We drove the first part as we were headed to Clingman's Dome. very curvy. Lots oh points to stop if you wish. there were a ton of people at the actual Newfound Gap point. go early. the right side lookout was coned off. not sure why. Wish we could have finished the drive.

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Jason Reiling
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Scenic driving

Nice drive

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Serena Ryan
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Hiking

Stunning views!

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Tom Rhodes
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A great drive. Suggestes for anyone in the area.

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Logan Jones
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Such a great drive with good views! check out the Morton Overlook for a perfect spot to look at the sunset.

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Nina Antonopoulos
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Hiking

Beautiful drive! There were plenty of places to pull over and take photos, flow of traffic going up to the summit was good. When you get to the top parking can be an issue on weekends/busy days. There is a sign we missed on. The way in to the parking lot that said Tennessee-North Carolina boarder. Would’ve been cool to get a photo with that! Bathrooms were nice. Traffic was bad once we got to chimney top picnic area.

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Joshua Poe
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Scenic drivingIcySnow

Good relaxing drive. It was closed for a few days because of ice and snow but opened up after a good sunny morning. Drive was easy and pleasant. Cool to see ice cycles forming on some of the rocks. There are some great pull off spots for photo ops.

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Cat Dartez
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This road closes intermittently due to ice during winter. Check GSMNP official Twitter @smokiesroadinfo for road statuses in GSMNP.

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Lynzie Ross
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Hiking

This is a must. We didn’t do any trails, just stopped at all of the outlooks. Absolutely breathtaking

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Larry Wheeler
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Hiking

Beautiful views. I love the Smokies!

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Andy Lee
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Scenic driving

Very easy drive, saw three bears with a herd of elks!

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