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rafting on the Pigeon River

Top 4 Things to Do in the Smoky Mountains After a Day of Whitewater Rafting

August 9, 2022

After joining us for an action packed day of whitewater rafting, you might be wondering what else there is to do in the area before heading back home from your vacation! The awesome news is that our rafting outpost is just a short drive away from plenty of fun activities! Here are the top 4 things to do in the Smoky Mountains after a day of whitewater rafting:

1. Drive the Foothills Parkway

Foothills ParkwayIf you just can’t get enough of the spectacular Smoky Mountain scenery, don’t miss the chance to drive along the Foothills Parkway! This amazing scenic drive starts less than 3 miles from our Pigeon River Outpost, so just head west on Interstate 40 and then turn at exit 433 to begin your drive! The Foothills Parkway features large sections of roadway that cross through a series of high ridges, running roughly parallel to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. As a result, you’ll enjoy unobstructed views of the Smokies to the south and the Tennessee valley to the north! Take the time to stop at one of the many pull offs to take some photos and soak in the views!

2. Treat Yourself to a Delicious Dinner in Cosby TN

Another one of the top things to do in the Smoky Mountains after a day of whitewater rafting is having a delicious dinner in nearby Cosby TN! After all, rafting down the Pigeon River can work up a serious appetite! You won’t want to miss Carver’s Orchard Restaurant, which is actually a family orchard where the Carvers have been growing apples in the area since the 1940s! To satisfy your appetite, your meal starts with a basket of tasty apple fritters served with apple butter and a juice glass of apple cider! The Woodshed Restaurant is another excellent option, where you can enjoy mouthwatering burgers, BBQ pork sandwiches, chicken salad lettuce wraps and more!

3. Explore the Cataloochee Valley

Elk crossing sign in the mountainsThe Cataloochee Valley is a delightful area of the Smokies to explore and the entrance is just a short drive east of our Pigeon River Outpost along Interstate 40 via Cove Creek Road! You’ll find all kinds of fun things to stop and see, including beautiful creeks, exciting hikes and fascinating historical structures! The Cataloochee Valley is also an excellent destination for wildlife viewing, as herds of elk can be seen regularly in the fields of the valley! Also keep your eyes open for spotting deer, turkey and other wildlife, especially during the morning and evening hours!

4. Spend the Night Under the Stars

Make the most of your vacation in the Smokies by spending the night under the stars at a campground in the mountains! While there are a ton of lodging options in the area, there is nothing like spending the night among the natural scenery at Pigeon River Campground! You’ll find that the campground also offers amazing camping cabins that come with many extra amenities that you won’t find at other campsites, including a refrigerator, a covered porch facing the river, air conditioning and much more! There are plenty of wonderful campground amenities too, such as recreational equipment, a pavilion with wireless Internet access and a refreshing swimming pool!

Now that you know the top things to do in the Smoky Mountains after a day of whitewater rafting, you’re ready to plan your whitewater rafting adventure in the Smokies! We look forward to taking you on a fun and thrilling journey down the Pigeon River!