SPRING INTO THE SMOKIES
There is nothing fresher than springtime in the North Carolina Smokies. As the mountains awake from their winter slumber and eagerly welcome the first blossoms of spring color, you will find the ideal seasonal getaway in the picturesque towns of Waynesville, Maggie Valley, Canton, Clyde, and Lake Junaluska. Fondly referred to as “the other color season,” the area comes alive with the early blossoms of spring like daffodils, dogwoods and cherry blossoms.
Warmer days and mild evenings offer the perfect opportunity to enjoy a plethora of outdoor adventure and unique local hotspots amidst the scenic backdrop of the Great Smoky Mountains. Whether you’re looking for that special “off the beaten path” hiking excursion or an epicurean adventure, the North Carolina Smokies are serving up the freshest springtime experiences around.
Graveyard Fields offers a great display of wildflowers common to the Blue Ridge Parkway, like rhododendron, larkspur, foamflower, jack-in-the-pulpit, evening primrose, bellflower and many more. Graveyard Fields features many blackberry and blueberry bushes, too. Park rules allow one gallon of blueberries per person per day. This area is very popular, so head out early to catch the blueberries while you can!
Mileage: 3.2 miles
The hike is composed of six different trails that form a loop and can be broken down into individual shorter hikes. Here, you can find features like the cascading Flat Laurel Creek Falls, incredible 360 views from the top of Sam’s Knob of Cold Mountain, Richland Balsam and Black Balsam, and even an opportunity to stroll through the dense quiet of a native spruce plantation. This a perfect hike!
Hike a piece of the Appalachian Trail at Max Patch, one of North Carolina’s most popular Appalachian Trail hikes, on a grassy, bald mountain, rising 4,629 feet that’s covered in wildflowers. Catch a gorgeous sunrise, sunset or afternoon picnic on this moderate two mile loop with stunning 360-degree views. Hike through miles of wildflowers, wild blueberries, blackberries, and wispy, tall grasses.
I-40 Harmen Den Exit
Mileage: 1.4-mile short loop trail that crosses the summit.
FREE HIKING MAPS
Before you hit the trails, make sure to download a map of some of our favorite hikes: