News

  1. Trailside Talk: See Cades Cove From a New Perspective—By Bike

    Trailside Talk: See Cades Cove From a New Perspective—By Bike Images by Quentin Ellison If you had to pick the top three spots in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the answer might be: 1. Cades Cove2. Cades Cove3. Cades Cove This exquisite mountain valley attracts visitors by the thousands in every season, and for good reason. The views are spectacular, animal life is abundant, and some of the Read more...
  2. Image for the Asking: A Winter Wonderland—Whither the Darling Buds of May?

    Image for the Asking: A Winter Wonderland—Whither the Darling Buds of May? Story and image by Don McGowan When I left my home state of Georgia more than a quarter century ago to live in the shadow of Great Smoky Mountains National Park (Boyd’s Creek, Tennessee, in 1993 to be exact), photographing snow in the park was a straightforward affair. If your vehicle was a four-wheel drive, you drove up to the entrance Read more...
  3. Finding the Gifts in the In-Betweens

    Finding the Gifts in the In-Betweens Photos by Sue Wasserman Frost in the morning, wood frogs chortling in the afternoon. This in-between time of year never fails to intrigue me. There are countless mornings the Smokies seem unwilling to release their grip on winter, gloating while painting early mornings in crystalized white. Bundled in layers, though, I’m relatively Read more...
  4. Permanent Camp: The Principle of Verticality

    Permanent Camp: The Principle of Verticality Image of George and Elizabeth Ellison by Quintin Ellison By George Ellison There are a few basic concepts that have helped me through the years to sort out the almost bewildering diversity of the geologic aspects, plants, animals, and natural areas that make up these very old mountains we call home. The “Principle of Read more...
  5. TEDx Speaker Champions Safe Passage Project for Wildlife

    TEDx Speaker Champions Safe Passage Project for Wildlife When Nikki Robinson walked out onto the stage during the final dress rehearsal for TEDx Asheville last month, the spotlights of the Diana Wortham Theatre shining in her eyes, she thought, “This is what it feels like to be a deer in the headlights.” And then she smiled and relaxed a bit, realizing the irony of that thought. After Read more...
  6. Trailside Talk: Want to Leave a Mark? Choose Footprints, Not Graffiti

    Trailside Talk: Want to Leave a Mark? Choose Footprints, Not Graffiti Image provided by Save Our Smokies The natural beauty of Great Smoky Mountains National Park is unmatched in the eastern United States. No other wilderness or park preserve has the same blend of mountains, streams, plant and animal life, and stunning views. More than 14 million visitors enjoyed the park last year, a record for the most- Read more...
  7. Northern River Otters Stage a Comeback

    Northern River Otters Stage a Comeback Intriguing, humorous, and stealthy, river otters are seldom seen. But after being gone for 50 years, they have reclaimed their place as denizens of the Southern Appalachians. “Otters make their homes in many watersheds in and around our mountain region and in Great Smoky Mountains National Park,” said Supervisory Wildlife Biologist Read more...
  8. Image for the Asking: A Reflection on the Nature of Things

    Image for the Asking: A Reflection on the Nature of Things Story and image by Don McGowan It is so tempting, given the amazing literal beauty of the geography of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, to become a photographic documentarian of these wonderful mountains and valleys, complete with their complex, diverse array of life forms and habitats. To do this, however, would be, in my humble opinion, Read more...
  9. Permanent Camp: Spring Ephemerals

    Permanent Camp: Spring Ephemerals Image of George and Elizabeth Ellison by Quintin Ellison By George Ellison Among the early woodland wildflowers is a distinctive group categorized as spring ephemerals. It is one of our most interesting plant groups, one that numbers some of the most showy, renowned, and interesting Blue Ridge wildflowers: trout lily, squirrel Read more...
  10. Wilderness Wildlife Week Makes Great Smoky Mountains Adventuring a Breeze

    Wilderness Wildlife Week Makes Great Smoky Mountains Adventuring a Breeze Photos by Sue Wasserman So many choices, so little time. That’s what I was thinking as I began considering just the right Great Smokies trail to meander while in Gatlinburg recently. GSMA Creative Services Director Frances Figart had no idea she was going to help make that decision easy. She had simply invited me to visit her at her Read more...

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