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Cades Cove in the Smoky Mountains

All Smoky Mountain Vacations
214 Sharon Dr.
Seymour, TN  37865

The Cades Cove Auto Tour is an 11 mile one-way loop which can easily take 2 hours to complete. Closed to motor traffic on Saturdays and Wednesdays until 10 am through late September. Bicycles are always welcome and bike rentals are available from April - October at the Cades Cove Campground store, which is open from 9 am - 9 pm during the summer and 9 am - 5 pm during early spring and fall. 

Restroom facilities are available at the Cove entrance and the Cable Mill Area. Guided tours near the Cove are available on horseback for $25.00 per person, carriage rides for $10.00 per person, hay rides for $6.00 per person and ranger-led guided hay rides for $8.00 per person. For additional information on tours and traffic limitations, call 865-448-6286.


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1. Picnic Area/Orientation Shelter ~ Features a campground store, open from 9 am - 7 pm in the summer, restroom facilities, a picnic area, horse rentals, and the Cades Cove Campground. Self-guided tour books of the Cove are provided for $1 by the Park.

2. Sparks Lane ~ Named for the livestock herders, Dave, Sam and Tom Sparks. A two-way road running north to south that was part of the original Cove roads since the 1840's.

The John Oliver Cabin

3. John Oliver Cabin ~ The Oliver's settled in Cades Cove and built this home in the early 1820's. The home and land remained in their family for more than 100 years and the John Oliver cabin is the oldest log home in Cades Cove.

4. Primitive Baptist Church ~ The earliest settlers established the church in 1827, however the log building was replaced in 1887. During the Civil War, the church closed due to public unrest.

5. Methodist Church ~ Built by J. D. McCampbell, a carpenter and blacksmith, in 115 days for $115.00. The church was established in the 1820's and was replaced in 1902 with the current building. The Civil War and Reconstruction divided the members and dissidents formed the Hopewell Methodist Church on the opposite side of the Cove, which no longer stands.

6. Hyatt Lane ~ Originally a Cherokee trail, this two-way road serves as a short cut of the loop.

7. Missionary Baptist Church ~  Established in 1839 when members of the Primitive Baptist Church were expelled because they favored missionary work.  Once a Sunday School in 1898, the church closed in 1944. From March to April daffodils, planted by the Civilian Conservations Corp in the 1930's, bloom to the right of the church. A notice reading "Co. 5427"  remains today.

8. Rich Mountain Trail ~ The State of Tennessee built this road in the 1920's as an entrance for early settlers, however the 12 mile road was first a Cherokee Indian trail. This road is closed in the winter and operates as an exit only route out of the Cove the rest of the year.

Missionary Baptist Church

9. Cooper Road Trail ~ Originally an Indian trail, the 10 mile road was created by Daniel David Foute in the 1830's as a route to Maryville. In the 1840's Joe Cooper improved on it for wagon use.

10. Elijah Oliver Place ~ Home of Elijah Oliver, son of John Oliver, who was born in the Cove in 1824. The property features a smokehouse, used to store meats, a corn crib to store corn, a springhouse to keep milk and butter cold, and a barn to shelter their cattle, horses and hay.

11. Abrams Falls Trail ~ A 5 mile round trip hike that features a spectacular 20 foot waterfall with a large 100 foot pool at the base, a favorite for swimming during the summer months.

The Cades Cove Visitor Center

12. Cable Mill Area and Visitor Center ~ Most of the buildings were located elsewhere in the Cove with the exception of the blacksmith shop and the gristmill. The Visitor Center, built in 1972 serves the public with books, post cards, maps, film, publications, and posters. Snow in the winter months will close the center. The property also features a blacksmith shop, cantilever barn, smokehouse, corn crib, barn and sorghum mill which were integral tools for preserving their harvests. The John P. Cable Gristmill still operates today and visitors can sample or purchase flour and corn mill. The Gregg-Cable house, the first all frame home in the Cove, served as a store on the lower level and a a home on the other.

13. Henry Whitehead Place ~ Built in 1898, this is the only one of three "transition" houses (combination of a regular log home and a frame house) remaining in the Park. The dwellings are models of the finest and roughest log construction in the Smoky Mountains.

14. Cades Cove Nature Trail ~ A 1/2 mile loop featuring pines, oaks, red maples, sourwoods and dogwood trees. A view into the early settlers hunt for necessities.

15. Dan Lawson Place ~ The main house was built in 1856 by Dan Lawson. Unique for it's brick chimney built with handmade blocks. A small granary, smokehouse and pantry buildings are also on site.

16. Tipton Place ~ Built in the early 1870's, this dwelling was owned by Col. Hamp Tipton, who served in the Mexican war. Rented by the McCaulley family in the late 1870's, James McCaulley added a blacksmith shop, smokehouse, woodshed and an apiary, used to house bee gums. Across the road is a cantilever barn and corn crib.

17. Carter Shields Cabin ~ Home to Washington "Carter" Shields, a soldier in the Battle of Shiloh, who returned to the Cove in 1906 after the battle, and purchased the property in 1910, only to leave the Cove again 11 years later.

Gregg-Cable house

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All Smoky Mountain Vacations
214 Sharon Dr.
Seymour, TN 37865

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