Winning viewpoints: ​Out of more than 1,000 photographs, a panel of judges chose 42 images as finalists in the 12th annual Appalachian Mountain Photography Competition, a selection of which we are proud to feature in these pages. Read more

Sarah's room

Family photo

Growing up, I lived in a house nestled in the woods. Only in the winter, with all the leaves off the trees, could we see our neighbor’s porch lights. Privacy afforded the imagination great luxury, which I—even as an only child—greatly enjoyed. Read more


Catching a feeling

Ed Kelley photo

Jo Ridge Kelley wants you to feel her painting. To clarify, streaking your fingers across the canvas is generally frowned upon and could result in a stern escort out of the gallery. Read more


The Man, George Masa

Courtesy of Great Smoky Mountains Association/George Masa Collection

In 1933, George Masa, a pivotal figure in the establishment of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the creator of some of the finest black and white photographs of the region, died in Asheville from influenza. Read more


Cradle of Forestry

Margaret Hester photo

Sliding Rock and Looking Glass Falls mark the winding roadway through the Pisgah National Forest to the Blue Ridge Parkway. Perhaps lesser known, the Cradle of Forestry is a unique 6,500-acre Historical Site. Read more


Right direction

Becky Johnson photo

Since ancient times, man has explored the landscape with the intent to discover what lies beyond what he knows. Oral descriptions and pictographs first began to tame the wild earth, and as man charted greater territories, so grew his knowledge. Read more


View from Bear Den Overlook

Tim Barnwell photo

As the mountains rise and fall along the 469-mile length of the Blue Ridge Parkway from Cherokee, N.C., to Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley, one might look out upon the landscape and wonder just what it is that one sees. Read more


Since 1840, when the first stamp picturing Queen Victoria was issued in Great Britain, countries have issued thousands and thousands of postage stamps. These small works of art allow one to journey around the world. Read more


From grunts to generals, soldiers understand the enormous role terrain plays in warfare. An intimate familiarity with terrain—the high ground, a ford in a river, a trail through a marsh—can spell the difference between victory and disaster. Read more



Mandy Newham-Cobb illustration

One of the best things about living in Western North Carolina is that those of us who call these mountains home get to enjoy all four seasons. That’s also one of the worst things about living here—especially if one has a yard to maintain. Read more


American chestnut

Donated photo

With a population that doesn’t quite break 1,000 and few enough restaurants that one can count them on one’s fingers, it’s safe to say that Meadowview, Va., is a small town. But when it comes to American chestnuts, Meadowview is a big name. Read more


I’ll never forget the drive, and the first time I saw the Appalachian mountain range’s purple waves while heading up the highway from Spartanburg, S.C. I was raised in the hot, sauna-summers of West Georgia, where the land is flat. Read more


Grassy Ridge Bald at Roan Mountain

Brian Stansberry/Creative Commons

The Southern Appalachians are a paragon of biological diversity. The Appalachians are the country’s most significant biodiversity hotspot east of the Rockies, and the Central and Southern Appalachians are unrivaled in the U.S. for aquatic diversity. Read more


This edition of Smoky Mountain Living looks to the landscape for inspiration. Here our readers share what they have seen among the streams and trees and peaks. Read more

Landscaping success story

Joel Osgood photo

When looking to buy a new home, many would not consider a front yard with rusted chain link fencing and one solitary shrub as having much “curb appeal.” As a budding landscape architect, I was fascinated with the prospect of a “blank canvas.” Read more


NC Arboretum bonsai garden

N.C. Arboretum photos

Surrounded by the lush folds of the botanically diverse Southern Appalachian Mountains in Asheville, the North Carolina Arboretum is adjacent to the scenic Blue Ridge Parkway and is nestled in one of the most beautiful natural settings in America. Read more