Mountain Explorer

Sprucing Up

Sprucing Up Southern Highlands

Sometimes, it is worthwhile to try to make things as they once were. In a sense, that is the purpose of the Southern Appalachian Spruce Restoration Initiative at the Southern Highlands Reserve.

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Features

When folks think of the Smoky Mountains, visions of glorious mountain peaks tucked in low-hanging clouds emerge. But when romance is out of the question and it’s time for family fun, the valleys of Tennessee offer their own exciting destinations. more

Mountain Explorer

Jim Parham says he is like many people when it comes to finding and appreciating the variety of flowers that can be seen on hikes or simple strolls in the North Carolina mountains. more

Mountain Explorer

When most people think of shorebirds they think of, well, shores and sleek fast flying wind birds that migrate in flocks and forage in groups. The mostly solitary, chunky, forest dwelling woodcock doesn’t seem to fit. more

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Kephard Prong Trail

NPS photo

For nearly a decade, beginning in the mid-1980s, hiking Kephart Prong Trail was a rite of spring for me. True, there are more spectacular places in the Great Smokies, nearby Charlies Bunion being one of them. more

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Grow Summer Vegetables

Sow True seed photo

It does seem somewhat unfair that just as our beautiful ripe salad tomatoes start producing, our lettuce crop begins to bolt and the leaves turn bitter. Bolting is when the lettuce sends up a flower stalk. more

Mountain Explorer

The Smokies’ Fish Master

Gary Verholek photo

Since joining the Great Smoky Mountains National Park as a fisheries technician in May 1994, Matt Kulp has yet to find a reason to leave. Kulp took a break from the field for a conversation about trout, water quality and habitat restoration. more

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dept_coneflower.jpg

Creative Commons

For centuries, gathering sochan—also known as the green-headed coneflower—has been a rite of springtime for the Cherokee people. more

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It is probably safe to say Dad had a green thumb although frost, sub-freezing temperatures, insects, rabbits and other vermin would—from time to time—result in his thumb being somewhat off color. more

Mountain Explorer

You can add espalier to your own garden or landscape by planting a tree already trained by professionals, or you can try training one yourself. more

Mountain Explorer

It’s art. It’s architecture. And it could be apples … or pears, or a variety of other fruit and ornamental trees. more

Mountain Explorer