Friends of the Smokies hikes are getting a larger, more diverse group. Dubbed Classic Hikes of the Smokies, these hikes are getting much more press and attention. We had a woman who’s visiting from New Zealand. You can’t go any further around the world than New Zealand.
Today, 12 hikers went into Cataloochee and walked the Boogerman Trail. Note that I say, Boogerman Trail, and not Boogerman Loop. At least two bridges are out on Caldwell Fork Trail, so we decided to not go around the loop to avoid plunging into the water.
Instead we took Boogerman Trail after the second bridge on Caldwell Fork , walked up and down to the stone walls and back again. It added a little more distance and elevation gain.
The flowers were amazing – showy orchis, stonecrop, painted trilliums, and even a couple of lady slippers still in bud. This doesn’t count the more common flowers that I’ve seen since February such as violets, star chickweed and toothworts. Bloodroot are gone but most other early flowers are still sticking around.
At a break, Holly gave an impassionate about supporting North Carolina’s full-color license plates.
The specialty license plate with Yonah, the bear, brings in $430,000 a year for the Smokies. But right now, there’s a law that will force the full-color license plates to disappear.
So call your state legislature and ask them to reinstate the plate.