Although summer draws the most visitors to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, followed closely by hoards of October leaf-lookers, spring is a time of special beauty in the southern Appalachian Mountains.
Since there are only a brief few weeks that are warm enough to allow the emergence of early blooming plants before the leaf canopy darkens the forest floor, the wildflowers appear en masse from mid-March through April.
Although the Park is known for magnificent vistas and enormous peaks, it’s always fun to enjoy the beauty “up close and personal!” And it’s fun to locate as many different kinds of blooms as possible.
My favorite wildflower viewing areas are Deep Creek near Bryson City, the Smokemont area north of the Oconaluftee Visitor’s Center, and the Cove Hardwoods Nature Trail near the Chimneys Picnic Area south of the Sugarland Park Headquarters.
If you have never visited the Smokies in the spring, I urge you to do so! You’ll avoid the crowds and experience a very special time of year in the mountains!
Photos courtesy of Richard Weisser and SmokyPhotos.com
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