The Kephart Prong Trail was on the list of trails for the Great Smoky Mountains State Park Wildflower Pilgrimage, so we thought it would be a good place to start. The trail was listed as moderate, but it was a pretty easy 2 mile climb, with the narrow foot bridges over the Oconaluftee River the roughest part of the trip for all of us. They had railings on one side, but they were one foot in front of the other balance beam narrow, so we took our time. Since the trail crosses over the river 6 times, by the 12th time on the 2 miles down we were as graceful as Nadia Comăneci!
This is the first Spring we were able to get out to explore our mountain wildflowers, and as you can see from Glenn’s pictures they made themselves available to us!
It was fun spotting and identifying the flowers, and there were obvious hints of new varieties waiting to blossom. We saw fields of Trillium, blue phlox just beginning to open up, lots of common violet (we have these all over our property too), what looked to be Partridge Berry, and wild geranium. The trail was lined with rhododendron bushes full of buds for future viewing.
The winter snow storms were frustrating and damaging when they were occuring, but now that Spring has sprung, I’m starting to see how they may have provided just the right amount of moisture for a drought ridden landscape at home and in our beautiful mountains.