With Spring right around the corner, RVers are starting to plan their adventures for the year. What better way to say goodbye to the dark, cold winter than enjoying one of the best shows nature puts on when wildflowers of all colors, shapes and sizes begin to bloom. We have selected three great wildflower celebrations where RVers can savor the vibrant displays that will soon burst out all over the country.
Gatlinburg, TN. April 11-15, 2017
Every spring, the Great Smoky Mountains bloom with over 1,400 different species of wildflowers. For four days in April, the city of Gatlinburg, TN hosts an annual wildflower pilgrimage that features hikes throughout the adjacent National Park and educational programs on local flora and fauna. Each day offers dozens of activities, and the wildflower walks vary in length and intensity for hikers of different skill levels. Visitors can see painted trilliums, dwarf ginseng, fringed phacelia, and much, much more! The Pilgrimage also offers birding trips, including a 2 hour “Owl Prowl” led by a former National Park Ranger. Other programs explore edible mushrooms, aquatic insects, nature photography, and Appalachian herbs. The Pilgrimage is a must for nature lovers of all kinds.
Luray, VA. May 6-7, 2017
Shenandoah National Park is home to over 860 wildflower species, and flowers start blooming in early spring and continue throughout the summer. In May, the park celebrates with a weekend full of hikes led by rangers and naturalists. Saturday begins with three morning hike options. Visitors can hunt for vernal irises and birdfoot violets up Bearfence Mountain or revel in the trillium and jack-in-the-pulpits along the Wonders of the Mill Prong. Another hike heads up the park’s tallest peak, Hawksbill Mountain. More hikes occur in the afternoon, including a new trail where hikers can discover what flowers may lay along its route. Sunday hikes bring visitors along the Appalachian trail and through a former apple orchard. The weekend also features a Wildflower Art Contest for local school children.
Crested Butte, CO. July 7-16, 2017
Crested Butte is a small Colorado town that becomes wildflower heaven in the summer. The flowers are so abundant, the town was named as the “Wildflower Capital of Colorado”. The festival features of a variety of events, programs and workshops throughout the week. Past programs have included hikes, wildflower ID walks, art and photography workshops, and wildlife educational programing. Take the 4x4 Jeep Tour of Paradise Drive for a 26-mile adventure through the blossoming landscape. Check back to the festivals official page for 2017 events when they are released.
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