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Wednesday, 15 August 2012 14:35

AT celebrates 75 years

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As the legend goes, Earl Shaffer, the first man to hike the Appalachian Trail from end-to-end in 1948, used leather…
Wednesday, 08 August 2012 13:49

Onward and upward

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Last week I wrote about the dark subterranean part of our little family adventure, which was a visit to Linville…
Wednesday, 08 August 2012 13:44

Blue Ridge Breakaway breaks path for bike culture

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By Paul Clark • Contributing writer Hundreds of bicyclists will soon be zipping along the scenic byways of Haywood County…
Wednesday, 01 August 2012 14:06

From the darkness to the light – literally

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Legend has it that curious fishermen watching trout seemingly disappear into Humpback Mountain back in 1822 discovered an entrance into…
By Jack Moore • Contributor J.R.R. Tolkien wrote, “Not all those who wander are lost,” and he may as well…
Wednesday, 25 July 2012 13:54

Coping with gray treefrogs

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The call of, “Come see! A frog!” is one oft repeated in the Hendershot household from spring through fall as…
By Melanie Threlkeld McConnell • Correspondent A rolling stone gathers no moss, so says the proverb, but it would if…
By George Ivey • Contributing writer What in the world would bring together the Great Smoky Mountains and the country…
Wednesday, 18 July 2012 13:54

Homeward bound

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After Jersey and the Big Apple (see last week’s Naturalist’s Corner — www.smokymountainnews.com/outdoors/item/7554-famous-nyc-offspring), it was time for a leisurely trip…
Wednesday, 11 July 2012 14:17

Famous NYC offspring

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New York City is big, bustling and in July – hot, but there are always entertaining and even educational ways…
In 25 years of teaching kindergarten, Cathryn Sills of Franklin read a lot of books to her young students. In…
Wednesday, 04 July 2012 00:00

Kudos, Gov. Perdue

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News outlets began reporting Sunday night (July 1) that North Carolina Gov. Bev Perdue vetoed Senate Bill 820, which would…
If you fall from a ledge rock-climbing, break a leg backpacking in the wilderness or twist your shoulder paddling a…
  Gov. Perdue has to be weary. This weariness was apparent months ago when she declared she would not seek…
Wednesday, 27 June 2012 12:32

The changing face of WNC’s national forests

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 A million acres of national forests sounds like a lot, and indeed it is. But consider the 8.6 million people…
Wednesday, 20 June 2012 15:25

Check your vital signs

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The Mountain Resources Commission, the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area, the U.S. Forest Service and the National Environmental Modeling and…
Wednesday, 20 June 2012 15:17

National forest balds in jeopardy due to funding cuts

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By Danny Bernstein • Contributor            Many hikers are amazed by the balds that dot the Southern Appalachian landscape along the…
Wednesday, 13 June 2012 19:27

Explore unique, beautiful gardens

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By Shannan Mashburn • SMN Intern Gardeners, wannabe-gardeners and those who simply appreciate a fine garden can catch a behind-the-scenes…
Wednesday, 13 June 2012 19:26

Bog is good

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Mountain bogs are some of the rarest and most imperiled natural habitat in the country. They are generally small and…
Wednesday, 06 June 2012 13:22

Paint Rock

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As one whom is often standing on the shoulder of the road peering through binoculars, I’m accustomed to people slowing…
Wednesday, 06 June 2012 13:19

‘Permanent Camp’ reveals raw moments, crazy wisdom

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By Brent Martin • Contributor Mention the name George Ellison to most people living in western North Carolina and what…
Wednesday, 30 May 2012 13:41

Lily here and lily there

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I was in the Grandfather District of the Pisgah National Forest the other morning preparing to go to one of…
Richard Baird, a plant pathologist from Mississippi State University, was hard at work one day last week examining mushrooms in…
Wednesday, 23 May 2012 12:50

A day in the life

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Up at 4 a.m. to try and catch up on a little correspondence before I hit the road for the…
Testing canola varieties for biofuel. Growing truffles. Finding hemlocks and Fraser firs that can survive the scourge of the adelgid.…
Wednesday, 16 May 2012 13:13

Another deadly exotic

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Experiments conducted by a multi-disciplinary team of researchers from the U.S., Canada and Germany strongly suggest that the fungus, Geomyces…
It took more than a decade, a lot of detective work and a protracted legal case to clear the way…
Wednesday, 09 May 2012 13:23

Following a supermoon

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Last night (May 5) was the unveiling of this year’s supermoon. Astronomer Richard Nolle coined the term supermoon in 1979…
David Burnette and his wife Diane do things the old way. “One thing just led to another,” David said of…
Thursday, 03 May 2012 01:58

Artful birding

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I had to take my shoes off to get there, but I believe last Saturday (April 28) was the 13th…
In the two years since the Dillsboro Dam was torn down, the Tuckasegee River has become home to a growing…
Threatening weather forecasts likely kept many who registered for last Saturday’s (April 21) 5th Annual Spring Hike in Waynesville’s Watershed…
The recent acquisition of 720 acres of land in the Plott Balsams has helped set the table for the first…
Wednesday, 18 April 2012 12:32

The “New” Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage

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The 62nd Annual Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park will be April 25 – 28. I…
As Tommy Yon carried his kayak up the side of a waterfall in Tennessee, he tried not to over-think the…
Wednesday, 11 April 2012 13:59

A Conference of Birds

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At Wild South’s recent “Green Tie Gala,” friend, writer, poet and publisher Thomas Rain Crowe, with a knowing wink, slipped…
Just in time for its 30th anniversary, the Western North Carolina Alliance one of the region’s most august environmental organizations…
Wednesday, 04 April 2012 12:58

Rekindling the spirit

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A couple of weeks ago I received an email from Rachel Reid of Andon-Reid Bed and Breakfast asking if I…
Several raceways were completely submerged in water, hundreds of thousands of trout laid dead on the ground, and the national…
Wednesday, 28 March 2012 12:58

Convicted by a jury of my peers

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Last year around this time I wrote about the honor of being nominated for Wild South’s Roosevelt-Ashe Society’s “Outstanding Journalist…
Wednesday, 28 March 2012 12:38

Motives of missing man remain a mystery

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It’s probably not the view sightseers in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park were expecting last week when they pulled…
Wednesday, 21 March 2012 14:04

Not-so-strange bedfellows

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I was encouraged by a recent press release from the North Carolina Wildlife Federation. The release stated, “In a show…
Susan Sakna and her two dogs were far from their home in Massachusetts. But like many Appalachian Trail thru-hikers, Sakna…
Thursday, 15 March 2012 04:29

Get ready for Polar wade into Bear Lake

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Well, it might not exactly live up to the name "Polar Plunge" given the current spate of warm weather, but…
Borrow seeds in the spring, grow your garden in summer, give them back in the fall. That’s the premise of…
Wednesday, 29 February 2012 22:21

What light over yonder horizon shines?

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Due to a lack of foresight and copious amounts of poor planning, I found myself last Sunday evening (Feb. 26)…
Chris Graves had just parked a school van in a field, and his wildlife students were filing out for some…
Wednesday, 22 February 2012 21:41

Counting at Kituwah

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This year was the 15th annual Great Backyard Bird Count, a citizen-science project created by Cornell Lab of Ornithology and…
Things have gotten slightly darker at Western Carolina University. The Cullowhee-based college is battling Boone’s Appalachian State University in the…