Blue Ridge Country - March/April 2018 - 43
other grosbeaks, have the
potential to be
seen at Gorges,
Fork and Roan
/ Northern Saw-whet Owl / Common Raven / Northern
Bobwhite / Yellow-bellied Sapsucker / Red-breasted Nuthatch / Brown Creeper / Winter Wren / Veery / Chestnutsided Warbler / Black-throated Blue Warbler / Canada
Warbler / Blackburnian Warbler / Rose-breasted Grosbeak
BIRD TRAILS: There are 600 miles of trails in the park
and adjacent forests, including a portion of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail. Additionally, The John Muir
State Scenic Trail is located in the nearby community of
WHERE TO STAY: The Hiwassee Ocoee SP offers 47 individual and eight group campsites with tables, fire rings,
and grills. Hot showers at the bathhouse and public water
are available. In the surrounding area are 30 developed
campgrounds along with 45 areas for day use. You can
also find hotel accommodations in Benton, along with
several private cabin rentals.
MUST-SEE: Ocoee Whitewater Center: Used for canoe
and kayak slalom events in the 1996 Summer Olympic
Games. Learn about history from knowledgeable staff;
see 750-million-year-old rock formations; hike miles of
trails; enjoy local crafts.
Rocky FoRk State PaRk
Rocky Fork SP contains top-ranking biological habitat diversity for the North American continent. There are wide
varieties of species, both flora and fauna; and this area is
part of the Unicoi Bear Reserve. The land is primarily Appalachian cove forest with many unnamed streams and
waterfalls, surrounded on three sides by the Cherokee
National Forest (north).
LIFE LISTERS: Common Raven / Bald Eagle / Osprey /
Peregrine Falcon / Broad-winged Hawk / Cooper's Hawk
/ Red-tailed Hawk / Sharp-shinned Hawk / Double-crested Cormorant / Barred Owl / Downy Woodpecker / Hairy
Woodpecker / Pileated Woodpecker / Red-bellied Woodpecker / Acadian Flycatcher / Great Crested Flycatcher /
Eastern Wood-Pewee / 11 species of Warbler / Ovenbird /
BIRD TRAILS: Within the 2,037 acres, there are miles of
old management and logging roads and nine moderate
to strenuous hiking trails. Also, the Appalachian Trail is
WHERE TO STAY: This location was added to the Tennessee State Park system in fall of 2012 and remains undeveloped. Accommodations can be found in the nearby
town of Erwin, TN or via private cabin, chalet, and resort
MUST-SEE: Flint Creek Trail: This route marks the historic battle and encampment locations between John Sevier
and the Cherokee and Creek Indians.
Roan Mountain State PaRk
The distinguishing feature is the dramatic elevation
changes, creating diverse layers of habitat for lower-,
middle- and higher-elevation bird species.
LIFE LISTERS: Lower (below 3,000'): Indigo Bunting /
Golden-winged Warbler / Yellow Warbler / Black-andwhite Warbler / Hooded Warbler / Ovenbird / Scarlet Tanager / Willow Flycatcher / Red-eyed Vireo / Wood Thrush.
Middle (3,000'-5,000'): Rose-breasted Grosbeak / Canada
Warbler / Blue-headed Warbler / Veery / Black-throated
Green Warbler / Chestnut-sided Warbler. Higher elevation (5,000+'): Alder Flycatcher / Red-breasted Nuthatch /
Winter Wren / Golden-crowned Kinglet / Hermit Thrush
/ Red Crossbill / Northern Saw-whet Owl
BIRD TRAILS: Hikers enjoy 12 miles of trails from easy to
strenuous difficulty levels. Eleven maintained trails pass
through a variety of landscapes including hardwood and
spruce-fir forests, rhododendron gardens, grassy balds,
river edges, and wildflower fields. There is even a trail
named "Moonshiner's Run"-ask a ranger for the history.
WHERE TO STAY: Roan Mountain SP offers 30 cabins,
complete with all amenities, and 107 campground sites
for RV and tent camping with bathhouses, grills, and picnic tables.
MUST-SEE: Miller Farmstead: This historic farmhouse
and buildings give a glimpse into the past of Appalachian-style subsistence living in the secluded mountains
of the South. It is largely unchanged from its establishment in the early 1900s.
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