Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Roaring Fork Nature Trail, GSMNP!

Driving along the Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail has to be one of my favorite things to do when visiting the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. As I culled through all of my images, I chose this image as my favorite. I really like the composition.

As I continue my drive farther along the nature trail, I stopped many times just to hear the birds singing their beautiful songs and to listen to the water of the Roaring Fork as it pours over the rocks and boulders making its way along the forest floor. Large carpets of moss cover the rocks and boulders gleaming like emeralds in the sunshine. This truly is a magical place.

There's something about the way the rhodendum bushes drape over the side of the stream with the Roaring Fork rushing by. The sunlight reflecting off of the rhododendum leaves reminds me of diamonds. They should rename this area of the Smokies "Emerald City." With the emerald green moss and the diamond rhododendum leaves, its as though the park has created its own style of jewelry.

As I meander the nature trail, I pass over the Roaring Fork many times along the route.

Smell that? That's the Mountain Laurel growing all throughout the park. Along the drive, I encountered many trees and bushes blooming with these dainty little pink and white flowers.

Notice the little dots that form a circle inside each bloom. Wonder what that's about.

With all of the moisture around me, so close to the Roaring Fork, I expected to see toadstools. And I did. So dainty and delicate looking.

But what a treat when I happened across these dainty little fungi. Orange Peel Fungi believe it or not, I read, are supposedly edible. Although you won't find me munching on them.

Hope everyone is having a nice week. Stay safe. There are storms predicted for this evening. I'm still trying to process the disaster in Joplin, Missouri, not to mention the Midwest and Deep South with their tornadoes and flooding. Makes one wonder what is going on with Mother Earth. ENJOY!


  1. AnonymousMay 25, 2011

    Carol, this is a wonderful series of photos. We have a dark purple wild laurel here, but it is more of a small shrub.

    Did you run into crowds on the weekend? I am wondering if the parks will be busy with the gas so high.

  2. Sandy, very few cars in the park however schools haven't let out yet. So glad you enjoyed this post. Hope you are doing well. Carol

  3. Stunning series of photos Carole. I would love to walk that trail .

  4. Carol...these are all so gorgeous. I love them! (You're so heart goes out to all the tornado victims. It's horrendous.)

  5. Those orange peel mushrooms are so eye-catching on the log! I like the path leading down the avenue of trees, too. You have so much greenery and a lot of running water this spring, Carol.