Date: Saturday, December 18
Time: Starting at 10 am
Where: Cataloochee Ranch
Distance: ~5 miles, 900 feet elevation gain
Difficulty: Moderate (5)
Cost: This hike is free for SAHC members and $10 for non-members
Have you spent hours learning how to identify trees by their leaves, only to have them all drift away come winter? Well, lucky for you, the Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy will be leading a hike on Saturday, December 18, to Hemphill Bald, focusing on Winter Tree Identification. On the hike, we will explore strategies to identify trees in winter — such as examining bark patterns, community types, the form of the tree, and more.
This moderate 5-mile roundtrip hike with an elevation change of 900 feet begins on a road used for hiking and horseback riding. Expect to see mountain streams and lovely cove hardwood forest mixed at times with hemlock stands and the ever-present rhododendron and mountain laurel. At the top of the ridge, the woods are replaced by open high altitude pastureland, and there is the chance for superb views of four counties and a number of mountain tops, including Cold Mountain, Crabtree Bald, Mt. Pisgah, and many others. The only difficult part of the hike is the last climb to the top. At the top is a stone table, moved there by Tom Alexander, Jr. and placed in the memory of his parents, Tom and Judy Alexander, founders of Cataloochee Ranch.
This hike is currently full. If you would like to be added to the waitlist, please fill out the form below.
2021 Winter Tree ID - Hemphill Bald