Great Smoky Mountains National Park- Chimney Tops

In May of 2015, I spent some time with family visiting Smoky Mountain National Park. I’ve been negligent with this blog, for several reasons, not least of which is because last fall my wife and I moved from Louisiana to South Carolina. So there’s plenty to catch up on. 
While in TN, I had the chance to do some hiking, including up Chimney Tops, which is one of the many popular hikes in the Smoky Mountains. 

The hike up was beautifully lush, with many little verdant coves such as this one
I believe this is Flatbacked Millipede, Sigmoria trimaculata
Beautiful timber check steps

I’ve been many trails in the northeast, and the steps along this trail are some of he nicest I have ever seen. My brother builds trails like this for the National Park Service in Washington.

Beautiful stone check steps

The rock outcropping on Chimney Tops, offering a 360-degree panoramic view
I did not climb all the way to the top. The rock outcropping was still wet from rain earlier in the day. 

The southern Appalachians reminds me of the White Mountains in New Hampshire. The views are similar, with some overlap in plant species,  but the plant communities of the southern Appalachians are famously diverse.  Now that I live in SC, I look forward to exploring

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