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Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Great Smoky Mountains Association-sponsored Branch Out events are designed to enhance greater public understanding, enjoyment and appreciation of the national park. more

Blog

Into the Mist is so named for 13 chapters of tragedy and heroic rescues made all the more chilling because the stories are real. more

Blog

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

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

Mountain Explorer

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By Lacey Raper

A variety of activities are scheduled for April in the national park. more

Blog

Sunset

National Park Service

The Blue Ridge Parkway and Great Smoky Mountains National Park top lists for popularity, according to the National Park System. more

Blog

Explore the beauty of the Smokies with author Ben Anderson as he chronicles a year-long backpacking and hiking adventure in this glorious region. more

Mountain Explorer

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Creative Commons

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

Mountain Explorer

In the late afternoon and near dusk, individuals, pairs and small herds of elk materialize out of the dark forests that surround Cataloochee Valley’s expansive meadows to graze the open fields. more

Mountain Explorer

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Courtesy of Archives of Appalachia, East Tennessee State University.

Good Reads

A review of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park’s handling of the devastating Chimney Tops 2 Fire in November 2016 found no evidence of negligence by park staff but revealed several shortcomings in the park’s disaster preparedness. more

Mountain Explorer

Jack Coburn was a pivotal figure in regional affairs at the onset of the Great Depression, and arguably of greater significance in the Park’s creation than anyone on the North Carolina side of the Smokies. more

Good Reads 1 Comments

From boonies to boomtown and back again, the Hazel Creek community’s complicated history comes to life in a new book from the Great Smoky Mountains Association. more

Mountain Explorer

Four Hikes, Four Experiences

Max Cooper photo

Autumn is a fantastic time of year to hike the trails in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The daytime temperatures are wonderfully cool and the air is clear of haze allowing for vistas that extend to the horizon. more

Mountain Explorer

The Elkmont Historic District in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is getting a makeover, with work now underway to restore some buildings and demolish others. more

Mountain Explorer

Before and after

Photo special to Smoky Mountain Living

Working in her studio nestled on a hillside overlooking Wears Valley, a border community of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park near Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, artist Kathryn Rutherford’s face takes on a radiance. more

Sweet Appalachia

Phenology training

NPS photo

Spring came to the Southeast three weeks early this year, and a burgeoning citizen science effort in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park aims to put a bead on whether seasonal patterns are shifting for good. more

Mountain Explorer

Picture-perfect Alum Cave Trail, marked by smooth tread and tightly constructed steps and bridges, is the result of two years of backbreaking work involving 50,000 hours of work from a continuously rotating crew of 50 people. more

Mountain Explorer

It was 20 degrees, snowing, and I was alone with my dog in a trackless middle of nowhere. I couldn’t have been happier. more

Mountain Explorer

With the creation of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in 1934, early park bureaucrats attempted to rewrite history by presenting the land largely as a primeval wilderness instead of preserving the folkways of its bustling communities. more

Good Reads