Let it Snow!

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We are happy to say that Ober Gatlinburg is up and running! Ride the famous Aerial Tram from Downtown Gatlinburg up 2.1 miles to the Ski Resort and Amusement Park as a great way to kick off your day. The views are astonishing! Once at the top, there are a variety of activities for all members of the family. They feature an indoor ice skating rink, arcade, carousel and wildlife encounters that are perfect for anyone not wanting to brave the elements.

They have a outdoor Alpine Slide and a Ski Mountain Coaster for family friendly outdoor activities. Ober has also opened up Snow tubing, which has been a huge hit for anyone ages 3 and older. It’s just like sledding but you don’t have to walk back up,  Ober has a “magic carpet” that takes care of that! If you have little ones, they also offer a Cubbies Snow Zone for the kids to play. Entry is free with an area/lift ticket.

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The slopes will resume regular operating hours following the start of the 2016/2017 season. Ticket prices vary on amount of days and equipment rental. The resort starting blowing snow last week and already has a base of over 15″ on most of their runs. Of course, you’ll have to check the forecast daily. And with 10 different trails and 7 different lifts, you’re sure to find one to suit your needs.

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This blog is sponsored by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg. For more info. on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 1-800-309-0277. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, and Smoky Mountain areas.

Skiing, Tubing, Ice Skating and More…

Snow_tubing_OGThere was a time when a child would take their tube or sleigh and eagerly find the highest hill they could climb, all to thoroughly enjoy a momentous slide! Here, in The Great Smoky Mountains we have the luxury of Ober Gatlinburg Resort. Locals and guests can relive that type of memory and develop new ones with their outdoor sports. They are well equipped with a state-of-the art Snow Tubing Park designed for numerous tubers to descend simultaneously. The barriers guide the tubes down a non collision course, which provides a safe slide every time. Unlike the days when one had to drag the tube back up the hill, Ober’s Park will provide you with a new tube after each slide.

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If you have an adventurous spirit you can try their Ski Slopes. They have nine trails serviced by two quads, one double and one surface lift, you will be able to spend more time on the slopes and less time in a line for a lift. They offer terrains for all abilities, from a beginner experiencing the joy of a snow sport for the first time, to an expert hitting the moguls and terrain park. 

Those of you who are into snowboarding, can appreciate their freestyle terrain park. They offer a number of rails, boxes and have various snow features such as table tops and spines during the season. If you are coming to the Smokies, but don’t want to be bothered with packing the equipment. Ober Gatlinburg has the supplies you need. Their rental office can provide you with skis, snowboards, ski pants, jackets, and helmets. Their trained staff will assist you and prepare you for a fun filled day on their slopes!

iceskatingIf you are not one to brave out the cold weather, Ober Resort offers a variety of indoor activities as well. Inside their indoor mall you can experience ice skating with their 140′ x 75 ice arena and for those who enjoy browsing the shops, here are a few you will find:

  • The Galleria Gift Shop has a unique collection of skiing items, snowboarding gear, and outerwear. The shop also has a variety of Ober Gatlinburg keepsakes.
  • Joyce’s and Ober Haus have the best selection of casual wear, outerwear, and accessories for men and women from brands such as Woolrich, Kuhl, Kavu and more!
  • At Obear’s Playhouse you can shop for toys, games, books, and apparel, that is designed for your little ones in mind.
  • The Obear Haus shop carries men’s casual outer wear.

Fit these Ober Events in your schedule..

The 2014 Ober Gatlinburg Race Program is an 8 event open class Ski & Snowboard Race Series. The best 6 out of 8 count towards the season champions in each division. It will take place every Thursday, starting January 9th at 5:30 PM. The final race is scheduled on Thursday, February 27th. Anyone that can ski or ride Mogul Ride can enter.

The Special Olympics Tennessee Winter Games will take place on January 27th and January 28th. There will be over 140 athletes with intellectual disabilities competing in Alpine Skiing, Snowboarding and Speed Skating in divisions based on their age and ability. The traditional lighting of the Special Olympics flame will take place on Monday at 9:00 AM on top of Ober Gatlinburg. The award presentation will begin at 2:00 PM on Tuesday.

This blog is sponsored by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg. For more information on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 865-430-3366. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg area.

ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals

The More the Merrier!

Gatlinburg is dazzling its guests with magical events to make the season a memorable one. The Winter Magic Trolley Ride of Lights has already begun. While you sit in the comfortable atmosphere of a trolley, you can take in the stunning light displays that are placed throughout the city. These visual displays have been specially designed to represent the critters you would find in the Smoky Mountain area. Also taking place throughout the city is our Winter Magic Tunes & Tales, as you stroll through the various plazas you can take in a performance by these musical talents:

• Hammer & Strings (Dulcimer players), who will be performing at the Reagan Terrace Mall
• Jon Hogue and Maria Moss  – Their presentation will be “It’s A Wonderful Life”.
• The Christmas Thyme Quartet – Acapella carolers; in early 1900’s Appalachian costuming
• Double Take –a 4 piece band performing bluegrass/country Christmas music
• ‘Father Christmas’ – Carey Jones – storyteller/singer
• EmiSunshine and her Dad – Emi is 9 years old; she sings, plays the banjo and writes many of the lyrics performed; early 1900’s attire
• 3-4 Elves and Frosty/On some nights, Rudolph or Ms. Claus may make an appearance at the “Yule Log Finale”.

ParadeGatlinburg’s 38th annual Fantasy of Lights Christmas Parade will travel through downtown Gatlinburg on Friday, December 6 starting at 7:30 PM. The parade includes more than 100 parade entries, over a dozen marching bands from Tennessee, North Carolina, Virginia, Georgia, and Alabama, and giant helium balloons taking to the streets.

Sevierville’s 51st Annual Christmas Parade will take place December 7th. It is a traditional hometown parade with baton twirlers, pageant winners, marching bands and floats leading up to the appearance of Santa Claus! The parade begins at 11:00 AM and can be seen at the Forks of the River Parkway and Court Ave. in historic downtown Sevierville, TN.

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The Smokies Stadium will be hosting Shadrack’s Christmas Wonderland. This year’s themed light show will be Santa’s Beach Party. The presentation will be open during the holidays, regardless of weather conditions. The show will begin each night at 6:00 PM and will continue till 10:00 PM. Admission to the light show will be $20.00 for cars or family vans. All tickets can be purchased on site, and you won’t even have to leave your vehicle.

Santa’s Village will also return this year with several exciting new additions, along with some of last year’s favorites. This year’s village will include:

  • Pictures with Santa Claus
  • Camel and pony rides
  • A Kids Zone with ultiple inflatables
  • An Orbitron
  • Train rides for kids to see the lights inside the park
  • Hot chocolate and snacks

For more information on this event – http://shadrackchristmas.com/sevierville/.

Ice_skatersYou can celebrate Christmas on Ice at Ober Gatlinburg’s Indoor Ice Arena. Enjoy the spirit of the season as local skaters display their talents on ice to the sounds of holiday music during a two-day performance. The annual Christmas on Ice Show at the Ober Gatlinburg Ice Skating Arena features local amateur skaters performing ice skating routines to traditional Christmas music, choreographed by rink instructor Devon Harman. This event will take place from December 7th – December 8th 2013.

While your here, enjoy the multitude of artists, musicians, and craftsmen in the area all in one central location for the Great Smoky Christmas Arts & Crafts Show from December 2nd – 8th. It will be held at the Gatlinburg Convention Center, which is located off of downtown Parkway. As always, admission is free! It is a great opportunity to meet the members of the nationally renowned Gatlinburg Arts and Crafts Community as they produce one-of-a-kind works of art available for purchase.

If you are inspired to do some winter crafts yourself after viewing the Arts & Crafts in the area, then you can attend Arrowmont Holiday Festival on December 7th- 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM. Enjoy creative time with family and friends as you make your own useful art for yourself. Each workshop focuses on a specific media and will result in a finished product. All classes are intended for adults and children working independently or together! There is a $30 class fee per person (includes all materials and lunch) Call for more information and registration call (865) 436-5860.

Looking for that little incentive to keep the kids off the naughty list? How about spending a little quality time with Santa! You and your young ones can make reservations to have breakfast & brunch with Santa at the Old Mill in Pigeon Forge on December 7th (reservations are required).

This blog is sponsored by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg. For more information on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 865-430-3366. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg area.

ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals

Clingman’s Dome Road in Winter

One year, one of our staff members, let’s call her Amy, cross-country skied on Clingman’s Dome Road.Clingman's Dome RoadThis 7-mile road leads up to the highest point in the Smokies, Clingman’s Dome, at 6,643 feet. This road is a popular tourist destination in the warmer months, but in the winter it is closed to all motorized vehicles(until April 1). This high elevation road probably gets more snow than anywhere else in the Park! And since it is closed in the winter, it never gets plowed, creating great conditions for great cross-country skiing and snowshoeing!

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Those that are feeling ambitious go the whole distance to Clingman’s Dome – 14 miles round trip! When they arrive at the Clingman’s Dome Observation Tower, they may have the whole place to themselves – a rare occurrence at this popular spot! Amy wasn’t feeling quite that ambitious, so she skied 2 miles in and 2 miles out.

It is amazing how much it snowed that winter here in the Smokies! It made for some treacherous driving, but was also great for winter sports! Up on Clingman’s Dome Road there were between 10 inches and 2 feet of snow (depending on how sunny or shady the spot)! What started out as near perfect powder, became somewhat sticky beneath Amy’s skis as the day warmed up.

My Snow Bear!After an hour or so, she took a break and decided to build a snowman! Over the next half hour Amy had a blast building her creation, which ended up being a snowbear! At first she was sad to leave him, but she was glad that she didn’t have to watch him melt! Hopefully he made a few people smile as they passed by in the following days!

Got Skis?

Unfortunately we don’t know of ANY places around here that rent cross-country skis or snowshoes. Usually we don’t get that much snow, so renting out these items probably hasn’t been profitable in the past. If you are coming to visit Gatlinburg from far away, our advice is to find some cross-country skis or snowshoes before you leave and bring them with you! You can always find them online too. Try Craigslist for a used pair – our friend Amy actually found a few used pairs in the Knoxville area!

SkiingIf you decide to try out Clingman’s Dome Road this winter, we hope you have fun! We recommend parking right beside the closed gate, off to the side so that other cars can get by. The Park Service might prefer that you park in the Newfound Gap parking lot, but then you would need to walk on the sometimes busy road, so we’re not sure which is preferable. Use your best judgement!

Make sure you bring everything you normally would for hiking: water, hat, gloves, sunglasses, snacks. Keep in mind that you will warm up fast since this is GREAT cardio! This is where layering is important. Amy only wore her jacket for about 5 minutes! Then it stayed in her backpack for the rest of the day.

Top 10 Reasons We like Cross-Country Skiing

We will leave you with the Top 10 Reasons Why We like Cross-Country Skiing:

  1. My SkisIt’s Free lift tickets can be EXPENSIVE!
  2. No Lines – you never have to stop moving
  3. No Lifts – you don’t get cold sitting on the lift.
  4. You can bring your dog, and it’s great exercise for him too!
  5. You can do it in your backyard, and a bunch of other places!
  6. It is GREAT exercise.
  7. Easy to learn (and less painful).
  8. You can watch winter wildlife and look for tracks.
  9. It gets you outside and into the sun, which helps beat winter blues.
  10. It’s FUN!

ERA In The SmokiesThis blog is sponsored by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg. For more info. on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 1-800-309-0277. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg area.

Snow Skiing in the Smokies!

Ski at Ober Gatlinburg!Cold weather is back in Gatlinburg and the Great Smoky Mountains. And, the ski slopes at Ober Gatlinburg are now open!

Ober Gatlinburg features nine trails serviced by two quad lifts, one double lift and one surface lift. The resort offers terrain for all abilities, from a beginner experiencing the joy of snow sports for the first time, to a seasoned expert hitting the moguls and terrain park. Ober Gatlinburg also has a popular snow tubing park, skiing and snowboarding equipment and clothing rentals, an ice skating rink, aerial tramway, restaurant and lounge, shops and more.

Ober Gatlinburg Named one of the top 10 Ski Destinations in the Country.Ober Gatlinburg was recently selected by AOL as one of the top 10 Ski Destinations in the country! It was selected based on its snow-making system, its tram that goes from downtown Gatlinburg, up to the resort, and the views of the Smoky Mountains!

Slopes are maintained with the latest in snow-grooming equipment to provide a smoother, more consistent surface creating enjoyable skiing conditions.

The Cabins of Winfield HeightsIf you are interested in renting a Gatlinburg cabin that is located close to the ski slopes at Ober Gatlinburg, check out:

The Cabins of Winfield Heights!


Don’t forget that snow tubing is a great option at Ober Gatlinburg! All tubing sessions are 1 hour and 45 minutes. Ticket sales are on a first-come, first- served basis and may sell out early. Must be at least 6 years old and 42″ tall to ride solo; children ages 3 – 5 must ride with an adult; children under 3 are not permitted to ride.

Let's go snow skiing at Ober Gatlinburg!

OBER GATLINBURG SLOPE STATISTICS

SUMMIT ELEVATION: 3300 feet BASE ELEVATION: 2700 feet VERTICAL DROP: 600 feet LONGEST RUN: 5000 feet # OF TRAILS 7 tree lined, 1 open SLOPE DIFFICULTY: SLOPE LENGTH VERTICAL DROP BEGINNER ......2 Runs  Alpine Way 2,600' 279'  Bear Run 3,200' 393' INTERMEDIATE ..4 Runs  Castle Run 1,100' 163'  Cub Way 1,800' 163' ADVANCED ......2 Runs  Grizzly 3,800' 556'  Mogul Ridge 300' 235' Ober Chute 4,400' 556'  Ski School (teaching area) LIFTS: QUAD - 2 DOUBLE - 1 SURFACE LIFT - 1 LIFT CAPACITY - 6000 people per/hour AVERAGE ANNUAL SNOWFALL - 35 inches SNOWMAKING - 100% snowmaking capabilities AVERAGE SEASON - Mid-December through Early-March NIGHT SKIING - all trails except Grizzly LESSONS - Smoky Mtn. Snow Sport School http://www.smokysnowsport.com SKI RENTALS - 1700 sets step-ins available at area SNOWBOARD RENTALS - 150 sets step-ins available at area ($300 deposit required) SKI SHOP - Swiss Outdoors Gear Shop at area DINING - Snack bars, Food Carts, Cafe, Restaurant and Lounge FIRST AID - operated by National Ski Patrol HOSPITAL - 15 miles TRAVEL - Gatlinburg - 10 minutes via Tram; Knoxville - 40 miles (1 hour) via I-40 east to Rt.66 to Rt. 441 south 

ERA In The SmokiesThis blog is sponsored in part by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg, TN. For more information on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 1-800-309-0277. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg area.

Gatlinburg Photo Contest – WINNER!

Gatlinburg Photo Contest – WINNER!
Photo Contest Category: Festivals & Events

Drum roll Please…..

After receiving hundreds of very nice event photos, we managed to select a few of the best ones as finalists. You can view all of these beautiful photos in our Facebook album (www.facebook.com/ERAInTheSmokies)!

We had to narrow it a little more though, and we managed to select 6 of these to receive special honor:

1st Place Winner!

cody-young
Photo By Cody Young

Gatlinburg Winter Magic

The City of Gatlinburg magically lights up the winter nights with millions of spectacular lights and lighted displays from November through February. Source: Gatlinburg. com

 

2nd Runners Up

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About Easter Sunrise Service

Gatlinburg’s Annual Easter Sunrise Service will be enhanced by the beauty of the Smokies when the community and its visitors gather at Ober Gatlinburg for this memorable worship service. The 30-40 minute high mountain service will be led by local pastors of the Gatlinburg Ministerial Association. Source: Ober Gatlinburg.com

 

3rd Runners Up

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About Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival

From colorful mountain tops to crafts and live entertainment, Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival is a county-wide event throughout the towns of Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge, Sevierville, and Townsend. These towns represent a special autumn zone of the Smoky Mountains that transforms itself through fun times, vibrancy of the leaves and hospitality of the locals. Come and stay during this magical time in Tennessee. Fall is the peak time to explore this Smoky Mountain region, which is famous for its fall leaf colors. Take in all of the special attractions and shows during Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival. Start dreaming now of crisp cool air. Discover a great vacation package, and plan your autumn vacation itinerary.  Source: Smoky Mountain Harvest Festival.com

Thank You all for participating in this contest, we will have another one soon, theme is a surprise, but go ahead and get your smoky mountains pictures ready! You could be the next lucky winner!

Let It Snow!!!

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Snow is more controversial than I ever thought possible! We have quite a few people who come here looking, hoping, praying for snow. We also have several people who are afraid of snow, or rather what it might do to the roads. In Gatlinburg we do occasionally get some snow, although rarely more than an inch. And it usually melts the next day. Here are some tips on how to enjoy (or survive) the winter weather here in the mountains!

Rent a Cabin in the Higher Elevations!1. Finding the Snow!
If you are one of those people who wants the snow, be encouraged! Just rent a cabin in a higher elevation, and chances are, if there’s the slightest chance of precipitation, it’ll snow at your cabin. If it doesn’t snow at your cabin while you’re here, stop by the Sugarlands Visitor Center, and ask the nice folks there if they know of any snow in the National Park that you could get to. On the higher elevations, once it snows, the mountains usually keep that white on their tops for the rest of the winter!


4x42. Avoiding Icy Mishaps!

Since they can’t control the weather, cabin rental companies don’t give refunds due to weather or road conditions. Besides, you’re coming to the mountains to enjoy the mountains! If you have a 4-wheel drive vehicle, or can borrow one from a friend or rent one, we recommend this. If not, invest in chains for your tires. Our Wal-tireMart here sells them for just $25-$65, depending on tire size. Well worth the investment! If you would still rather just avoid the steep hills altogether, make sure to ask your reservationist for a cabin that has no steep hills to get to. This can be very difficult to find around here, so be sure to book early.

Check the weather for Gatlinburg!3. Timing is everything!
Check the weather before you come. And once you’re here, check your radio, TV, or newspaper for regular weather updates. If there is a chance of snow or ice, plan to do your driving in Gatlinburg at the warmest, sunniest time of day. Don’t wait to go out and about, or wait to head back to your cabin, til after dark, when it will be colder, harder to see, and more difficult to find help if you need it. Don’t stay out much past 7pm, if there is any chance of bad weather. Get to your cabin and snuggle down for a cozy evening. Try to plan your vacation so that you don’t have to leave your cabin early in the morning. (It’s vacation, you want to sleep in anyway!) Give the sun a chance to thaw out the roads for you. If you feel it absolutely necessary to be out early in the morning, remember that 4-wheel drive and/or chains, and maybe even bring a bag of rock salt with you just in case.

Go Snow Tubing at Ober Gatlinburg!4. Enjoy The Adventure That Comes To You!
The snow is absolutely gorgeous! Just imagine waking up to a winter wonderland! Don’t be a worry wart and ruin you and your family’s vacation! Enjoy it! Go sledding! Build a snowman! Snow angels! A fort or igloo! Head to Ober Gatlinburg and try skiing or snow tubing!

Get Some Great Deals This Winter!5. Be Prepared!
Here are some things to have with you:
* 4 wheel drive vehicle and/or chains for your tires
* rock salt
* windshield ice scraper
* flashlight
* starter log and matches or lighter if you have a wood-burning fireplace
* plenty of food
* hot chocolate!
* coffee
* sled
* an adventurous spirit
* a smile!

Now that we’re all ready… Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow!!!

ERA In The SmokiesThis blog is sponsored in part by ERA In The Smokies Realty and Rentals located at 207 Parkway in Gatlinburg, TN. For more information on a Gatlinburg Cabin for your Smoky Mountain Vacation or all the reasons to move to the Smokies, call 1-800-309-0277. ERA In The Smokies is a leader in chalet and Log Cabin Rentals and Real Estate Sales in the Gatlinburg area.