By Karen Chávez , email@example.com
GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS NATIONAL PARK – Despite a late fall wildfire that shut down the park for nearly two weeks and scorched 11,000 acres, the Smokies drew a record number of visitors last year.
Park spokeswoman Jamie Sanders said more than 11.3 million people visited the Smokies in 2016, helping increase a healthy connection to the outdoors while boosting the economy.
The visitation was a 5.6 percent increase over 2015 when there were 10.7 million visitors.
The Smokies is a rugged swath of a half-million acres of wilderness, front- and backcountry campsites, picnic areas, historic structures and some 900 miles of trails straddling the North Carolina-Tennessee border. It is the most visited park in the National Park Service.
Scientific Name: Alternanthera philoxeroides A native of South America, alligatorweed was inadvertently introduced to Southeastern U.S. in the late 1800s. Its white flowers are clover-like and bloom a summer. Most commonly found floating in mats along the water’s edge, alligatorweed also grows immersed and even terrestrially. Its opposing leaves are lance shaped, 1-2 inches long, […]
Do you know where the water that flows into a storm drain goes? This water does not go to a treatment plant but flows directly into our streams, lakes, and rivers. Many people poor oil, paint, yard waste, and other pollutants into the storm drain because they think the water will be treated before […]
RiverLink and MountainTrue have developed informational kiosks for each river access point along the French Broad River Paddle Trail with a grant from the North Carolina Recreational Trails Program. Each kiosk focuses on historical and natural features of the river, as well as paddle trail information including maps and boater resources. These kiosks aid users and […]