I am seriously considering the joyce-kilmer three area trip discussed above, these pics has me wanting to check it out:
"The Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest along Little Santeetlah Creek is a rare example of an old growth cove hardwood forest, an extremely diverse forest type unique to the Appalachian Mountains. Although there are many types of trees in Joyce Kilmer, dominant species include poplar, hemlock, red and white oak, basswood, beech, and sycamore. Many of the trees in Joyce Kilmer are over 400 years old. The largest rise to heights of over 100 feet (30 m) and have circumferences of up to 20 feet (6.1 m). The Slickrock Creek basin is coated primarily by a mature second-growth cove hardwood forest, although a substantial old growth stand still exists in its upper watershed."
Sounds awesome. Time to make a new thread.
I am a big fan of solitude/few crowds, i know the smokies will be packed. this area will not. Also you have the smog to deal with.