PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. — Add the color pink to the mix of red, yellow and orange fall colors of the Great Smoky Mountains.
Pink Jeep Tours already shows off natural beauty in Las Vegas, Sedona and the Grand Canyon. Last spring the company started tours through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and is now promoting them as a great way for leaf peepers to enjoy the fall colors.
Most of the tour guides are local. But the supervisor, Tom McCabe, is an East Tennessee newcomer who moved here from Arizona.
"To see all these beautiful trees and they are all changing. Your yellow, your oranges, your bright reds. We're here to introduce pink to the beautiful Smoky Mountains," he said.
The company follows the rules and does not travel off road.
"When you are in the National Park you can't go off road. Everything is protected," he said.
While all the Pink Jeep Tours in the Smokies travel on paved roads, most tours end on a rugged trail the company built nearby in Pigeon Forge.
"This is private land that we're on. It used to be the Z Buda RV park. And we came up here and made this beautiful off-road trail to show our guests what our pink jeeps can do," he said.
The drivers complete at least three weeks of specialized driving safety training.
Depending on the route, a tour takes two to three hours and features two or three stops for scenic photos.
The jeeps operate in all weather, rain or shine, cold or hot. The vehicles are covered and climate controlled.
An all off-road experience may be coming soon and perhaps a four-hour tour of Tom McCabe's favorite place in the Smokies.
"Love Cades Cove. I mean, you've got the history of the people who were living there. You have the bears and the deer. It's just beautiful," he said.