Conditions are significantly calmer on the mountain today. We are still shrouded in cloud cover with the occasional mist keeping things damp. Our high temp yesterday was 47, with our overnight low dipping to 34. We tallied 0.8" of rainfall. It's currently hovering in the mid 30s.
The winds really scaled back about the same time the warning expired last night. What guests we were able to receive all ascended via Alum Cave, in which there were reports of trees down on the trail later in the day. One can assume that none of our trails came through this storm unscathed, but until we get more intel on each one we can't say for sure at this time. NPS maintenance crews are diligently working to clear roads and trails to allow visitors back into the park as soon as it safe to do so. Once we receive word that the lodge is accessible again from either US 441 or Cherokee Orchard, we will relay that message speedily.
In the meantime, we are operating under the assumption that we will be unable to host guests this evening without enough reasonable time for visitors to enter the park and ascend the mountain. Once our office closes this evening, all road and trail related questions will have to be directed to the NPS. We will try and provide as much information as possible via this blog and social media when we receive updates.
We're still in the process of evaluating the damage caused from yesterday's intense winds. The lodge grounds came through unscathed thankfully. The trails that complete the Cliff Tops loop have some debris in places, with only a few spots where grand stands of trees have been uprooted. We'll continue to get a better idea of what's happened around the mountain over the next few days. We know of trees down on Alum Cave and Trillium Gap. No word yet on The Boulevard, Rainbow Falls, or Brushy Mountain.
News information can be hard to gather up here, but we are all aware of the damage that was inflicted in the nearby communities as a result of yesterday's storm. Gatlinburg, Pittman Center, and the rest of Sevier County are in this crew's thoughts and prayers. Take care.
Welcome to the official blog of LeConte Lodge. We hope you find the information provided here both helpful and enjoyable. Thank you for visiting the site, and we hope to see you on the mountain!