At our inception 20 years ago, we chose to be different. Unlike other news organizations, we made the decision to provide in-depth, regional reporting free to anyone who wanted access to it. We don’t plan to change that model. Support from our readers will help us maintain and strengthen the editorial independence that is crucial to our mission to help make Western North Carolina a better place to call home. If you are able, please support The Smoky Mountain News.

The Smoky Mountain News is a wholly private corporation. Reader contributions support the journalistic mission of SMN to remain independent. Your support of SMN does not constitute a charitable donation. If you have a question about contributing to SMN, please contact us.

It was 1972, and the world of whitewater paddling was changing. Americans were just about a decade into experimenting with…

Comment

I have had, since 2004, one of the best gigs any bird nerd could ask for. That was when I…

Comment

In popular culture mules get a bad rap, cast as stubborn, ornery and even mischievous.  But Danny Gibson, animal packer for the…

Comment

In 2013, Western Carolina University cut the ribbon on 7-mile trail system zig-zagging an otherwise unbuildable piece of university property.…

Comment

On the Appalachian Trail, everybody’s story is the same, in a sense — the chill of the cold, the heat…

Comment

I had the great pleasure of leading an early spring birding trip for Alarka Expeditions this past weekend, April 21-22.…

Comment

The combination of a stress-filled week and the dawn of a perfect, sunny and 70-something degree day worked like a…

Comment

For Nick Provost and Peter Moyle, co-owners of the startup outdoors brand Gnarcissist Gear, it all started with granola bars…

Comment

One of Western North Carolina’s most celebrated visitors acquired his love of — and curiosity about — nature at his…

Comment

Of all the rugged places in Western North Carolina, one of the most pristine and unique is also one of…

Comment

It was 1983 when Avram Friedman first rolled into Sylva, driving the repurposed school bus that was home for him,…

Comment

It doesn’t take a calendar to know spring is here. Spring is surely in the air but it’s also in…

Comment

While elementary, junior high and high school students from across the region offered a plethora of good ideas during last…

Comment

When Sharon Van Horn organized the first-ever Thru-Hiker Chow Down in Franklin, she and her husband Bill were pretty fresh…

Comment

Status of the Lake Junaluska eagles remains a mystery, but I still have my fingers crossed for a successful nesting…

Comment

The first time Matt Kirby attempted the 72-mile Georgia Death Race, he almost didn’t finish.  “I had a friend who…

Comment

It’s been nearly four decades since Roger Clapp, then a math and science teacher for a middle school in Virginia,…

Comment

The Hilton Pond Center for Piedmont Natural History in York, South Carolina, is one of the few year round banding…

Comment

Lake Logan is a familiar fixture of any cruise along Haywood County’s stretch of N.C. 215, an 80-acre expanse of…

Comment

The sky is a flawless, cloudless blue over Cataloochee Ski Area as Mark Brogan, 37, suits up for a morning…

Comment

The eagles’ neighbors have known for months, observant birders and other Lake Junaluska regulars have either known or suspected, and…

Comment

It’s been just about 10 years since the day Joe-Ann McCoy, then living in Iowa and working as the national…

Comment

The doors opened, and the room filled — with hikers, bikers, ecologists, conservation workers, economic development professionals and Cherokee tribal…

Comment

Born in the upstairs of the Post Office building his mom ran in Crabtree, Robert Williams, now 87, has always…

Comment

The day after our water dance with manatees in Crystal River we headed across Florida to Merritt Island National Wildlife…

Comment

Drawing more than 300 million visitors each year, the National Park Service is both a reservoir of natural beauty and…

Comment

A pair of mature bald eagles has been hanging out at Lake Junaluska for a few months now. I have…

Comment

Waynesville is in the midst of a makeover on three of its streams, and it’s a renovation that fish, crayfish…

Comment

Christopher Columbus had a lot of misconceptions about where he wound up in 1492 and what he saw. Mermaids were…

Comment

An Old World delicacy tied to myths of the supernatural, the truffle is often construed as a rare exotic, likely…

Comment

At 8 a.m. on a December morning, the newly risen sun had barely warmed the air over Franklin from the…

Comment

Bamboo is the common name applied to a wide and varied group of woody grasses from all around the world.…

Comment

When rain finally quelled the wildfires running rampant through the Southeastern U.S. last year, the public was breathing a collective…

Comment

At 34, Jennifer Pharr Davis has conquered her fair share of long-distance hikes, and then some. Her 2011 hike of…

Comment

Some time around mid-September I added tic number 207 to my 2017 bird list. It was a merlin I saw…

Comment

At some point roughly 20 years ago, a shipment from Asia arrived in the United States with a passel of…

Comment

In its two years of existence, the Fly Fishing Museum of the Southern Appalachians has shown a willingness to travel.…

Comment

I received a few emails after the story of Brent Martin’s departure as Southern Appalachian Regional Director of the Wilderness…

Comment

When Margo Capparelli, Ph.D., first began her career, she had little idea that it would develop such a strong focus…

Comment

Bunny Johns became a paddler mostly by accident. As a college freshman in the early 1960s, she’d lined up a…

Comment

Don’t you love the way it rolls off the tongue — “spec-mm-dsgt?” As in, “what time is it spec-mm-dsgt?”

Comment

The Smoky Mountain Field School was only a couple years old when Joel Zachary came on as an instructor in…

Comment

It’s a sunny, abnormally warm October afternoon, and Tom Anspach is ready to meet it with a canoe on the…

Comment

Two years in a row — for this Hendershot family that’s like a tradition. We pedaled the Virginia Creeper Trail…

Comment

Two short years ago, the backyard of Waynesville’s Grace Church in the Mountains was basically just grass, save for a…

Comment

It’s a sunny Friday morning on the Pigeon River when the bucket brigade assembles, five-gallon containers in hand. The stock…

Comment

I had the pleasure of leading a birding trip for Alarka Expeditions on Friday September 29. I had been in…

Comment

Darby Harris is going on a bike ride Saturday, Oct. 7, but how far he’ll pedal will be a mystery…

Comment

The years since retirement have been anything but dull for Highlands residents Ed and Cindy Boos. From Ecuador to Kenya…

Comment

Page 2 of 93
Go to top