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COLLINS CREEK PICNIC PAVILION, NC

part ofGreat Smoky Mountains National Park, National Park Service
Photo: COLLINS CREEK PICNIC PAVILION
Status: Open through Fri Oct 31 2014   Season Dates
 

Overview

Collins Creek, tucked into picturesque mountain ranges and surrounded by pristine mountain streams, is the perfect backdrop for your party or family get-together.

Whether blanketed in bright wildflowers in the spring or vivid colors in the fall, the scenery at Collins Creek never disappoints.

Natural Features:

Located in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park at an elevation of 2,600 ft., Collins Creek provides a moderate climate, characterized by mild winters and hot, humid summers. The Pavilion is located nearby the Oconaluftee River and the Oconaluftee Visitors Center, the gateway to the North Carolina section of the Smokies.

The Qualla Boundary, commonly known as Cherokee, North Carolina, is roughly 8 miles south of the pavilion. This area serves as a reservation for the Eastern Band of the Cherokee nation, who inhabited this area long before early Euro-American settlements. Oconaluftee comes from the Cherokee village name meaning, "by the river."

Recreation:

Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a hiker's paradise, with nearby trails including the 3.9-mile Smokemont Loop Trail, Bradley Fork Trail and Newton Bald Trail.

The Oconaluftee River offers some of the best trout fishing in the park. Downstrean from the confluence with the Bradley Fork, the Oconaluftee River opens up and features large grassy meadows, which are not too heavily populated with anglers.

The park holds one of the best collections of log buildings in the eastern United States. Over 90 historic structures, including houses, barns, outbuildings, churches, schools and grist mills, have been preserved or rehabilitated in the park. History buffs will be delighted to know that a good portion of the surrounding land is a designated part of the Oconaluftee Archaeological District, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Facilities:

Collins Creek is the ideal location for a group day trip. A large pavilion with tables and multiple grills provides a convenient place for visitors to prepare meals while enjoying the stunning backdrop. The pavilion can hold approximately 70 guests, with four charcoal grills and 15 picnic tables.

Visitors should also be aware that while the site meets accessibility standards, the restrooms do not.

Nearby Attractions:

The Oconaluftee Visitor Center, located just six miles away, features museum exhibits that tell the story of life in the Smoky Mountains dating back to early native Americans. The adjacent Mountain Farm Museum highlights a large collection of historical log structures.

Activities and Amenities

Within Facility
  • Accessible Sites
  • Drinking Water
  • Fishing
  • Flush Toilets
  • Grills
  • Hiking
  • Host
  • Picnic Shelters
  • Wildlife Viewing
Less Than 1 Mile
  • Historic Sites
  • River Access
  • Trails
Within 10 Miles
  • Visitors Center
Know Before You Go
  • Bear Habitat!!
    • All food and items used to store or prepare food, including coolers, MUST be stored in the trunk or cab of your vehicle/s at all times when not in use.
    • Dispose of garbage promptly in bear-proof dumpsters.
    • This rule is strictly enforced!


  • Potable water is available at restrooms but not at the pavilion.
  • Alcohol is allowed at designated picnic areas.
  • There are BBQ grills for charcoal fires. Wood fires are not allowed.
  • Decorations are allowed, provided they do not damage the structure (i.e. no staples) and are cleaned up on departure. Directional signs leading to the site are prohibited.
  • Commercial activity (i.e. sales) is prohibited. Use of the pavilion for weddings and wedding receptions requires a Special Use Permit. Call 865-436-1261 for permit information.
  • Keep your confirmation notice with you in the event of a conflict with a non-reservation party.
  • A Tennessee or North Carolina fishing license is required to fish in the park. Special regulations apply in the park.
  • Pets are permitted but cannot be left unattended. All pets must be kept on a leash at all times. Pets are not allowed on trails.
  • For additional park information call 865-436-1200 or visit www.nps.gov/grsm
  • Getting There:

    GPS Info. (Latitude, Longitude):
    35.56722, -83.33389
    35°34'2"N, 83°20'2"W

    There is no street address. Collins Creek picnic area is 8 miles north of Cherokee, NC on Newfound Gap Road (aka U.S. 441)

    Contact Information:

    Mailing Address:

    COLLINS CREEK PICNIC PAVILION
    Mailing address is c/o Oconaluftee Ranger Station

    60 Enloe-Floyd Bottoms Road
    Cherokee  NC  28719

    Phone Number:

    Information:  (865)436-1261
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    Bureau of Land Management Federal Highway Administration National Oceanic Atmosphere Administration Smithsonian Institution USDA Forest Service US Army Corps of Engineers US Fish and Wildlife Service National Park Service Bureau of Engraving and Printing Tennessee Valley Authority Bureau of Reclamation National Archives Records Administration

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