As our faithful readers know, only really extreme weather interferes with our hikes. So a recent rainstorm and high humidity did not prevent us from ascending Waterrock Knob on Saturday. The Knob, at 6292 feet (1918 meters), is one of 40 peaks in North Carolina that are greater than 6,000 feet.
We really like this hike because there is a view over our town, Maggie Valley. If you look carefully in the next picture, just to the right of the second hemlock tree (click on the picture to enlarge it), you will see a straight cut up a mountain. That is the chairlift at Ghost Town in the Sky. We live just a little further up and to the left of Ghost Town (basically, behind that hemlock).
We get asked all of the time about the dead or dying hemlock trees that can be seen all over our mountains. They are under attack from the Hemlock Woolly Adelgid. You can read a great article about them from the National Park Service here.
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We posted the link to this story on our Facebook Page yesterday, but wanted to make sure everyone saw it. Happy Retirement to Rusty Bradley, the Park Superintendent of Mount Mitchell State Park. Mount Mitchell is the tallest mountain east of the Mississippi River and is known for its “fun” winter weather – some of which is detailed in the article.