Cosby...Worth the Trip! Along with the natural beauty of Cosby there are treasures to be found in the shops and lodging facilities offered. Cosby is quiet and away from the hustle bustle of all of the activity yet a short distance to all that the Smokies has to offer.
Traveling east From Gatlinburg, Highway 321 runs parallel to the Park boundary. Greenbrier, a world unto itself, is just a short distance outside of Gatlinburg. In Cosby, the road splits in two: a right turn leads to State 32 and follows the curve of the Park boundary toward Cataloochee, a left turn brings travelers to Foothills Parkway East.
For travelers coming from I-40, this short road over Green Mountain makes a perfect beginning or ending to any trip. Several pullovers look out across Cosby's farmland to the mountains beyond and make excellent vantage points for Smoky Mountain sunsets.
Some Highlights In & Around Cosby
Located adjacent to Yogi's Jellystone Campground about 15 miles outside of Gatlinburg, this moderate, little-known trail leads 3.5 miles to a magnificent virgin cove hardwood forest. One stand of ancient yellow poplars is thought to be among the oldest living things in the eastern United States.
This quiet hideaway is located along State 32 between Cosby and Cataloochee. A small, private campground houses 9 sites and a picnic area and horseback riding trails are also available. The Chestnut Ridge Trail at Big Creek leads hikers to the restored fire tower atop Mt. Cammerer.
In the height of summer when every other campground is full, there are bound to be spaces available at Cosby Campground, only a half-hour drive from Gatlinburg. Cosby offers quiet camping and peaceful picnicking, set deep in the forest along rushing Cosby Creek. Bikes and horses are allowed and rangers give special campfire programs at the amphitheater.
This falls is said to get its name from the ruffled grouse's unusual practice of wallowing in the dust. Although it does not carry a high volume of water, Henwallow is a beautiful cascade that fans out as it slides down sheer rock for almost 100 feet. The moderate 4.2 mile trail near the entrance to Cosby Campground leads through hemlock, poplar and rhododendron forest.
The restored fire tower atop Mount Cammerer provides panoramic 360 degree views of the entire Park. One of the first Friends of the Smokies restoration projects, this historic fire tower was once used regularly by rangers. The 12-mile hike leading up the mountain is accessible from the Low Gap Trail at Cosby Campground.
Climbing a strenuous trail through the changing forest of Spruce Fir, Fraser Fir and Red Spruce, the Mt. Sterling trail emerges atop a truly magnificent pinnacle where another Park fire tower stands. Two trailheads lead to the summit, one from Cosby Campground and one from Big Creek.