ROAN MOUNTAIN, Tenn. (WJHL) – As Tennessee State Parks reopen facilities and National Parks announce reopening plans, popular hiking areas in Northeast Tennessee remain closed.
The National Forest Service told News Channel 11 on Friday that the Appalachian Trail access points in Cherokee National Forest remain closed.
That includes access to popular areas such as Laurel Falls and Round Bald, Jane Bald and Cloudland areas on Roan Mountain.
The Forest Service’s highest priority is ensuring the safety of the public and our employees on national forest system lands while supporting mission critical functions. We are regularly evaluating the situation and will work on phased plans to reopen sites and facilities as soon as this can be accomplished safely. Closing any site for any reason is not one we take lightly, but protecting our visitors and employees remains our highest priority. We are looking forward to again seeing these sites filled with the people from the communities we serve, enjoying the full benefits their national forest has to offer.Terry McDonald, spokesperson for Cherokee National Forest
Other popular areas in the Cherokee National Forest remain closed at this time, such as Rock Creek Recreation Area, Watauga Point and Jacob’s Creek Recreation Area.
You can find more about what trails, parks and forests are open by visiting the Trail Team 11 page.