Saturday, May 23, 2009

Mountain Laurel Heaven: Hike to Spence Field

As we approach the late spring season, I just wanted to remind hikers not to pass up the excellent opportunity to see the incredible displays of mountain laurel at Spence Field, located on the Appalachian Trail near Thunderhead Mountain.

The best time to see mountain laurel in peak bloom on Spence Field is during the early-to-mid June time period.

In addition to a couple acres of the soft white and pink blooms, you’ll have stunning views of the North Carolina side of the Park, as well as plenty of space to enjoy a picnic lunch in the many meadows in the area.

There are several trails that lead to Spence Field, but the shortest route is from the Anthony Creek trailhead in the Cades Cove picnic area.

Here are a few pictures from our hike last year:

If you still have a little gas left in the tank, I highly recommend taking the time to make the trip up to Rocky Top, only 1.2 miles beyond Spence Field. Rocky Top provides some of the best panoramic views in the park, in my opinion.

For more information on hiking the trail to Spence Field, please click here.

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