North Carolina
Nature Hiking in the Southern Appalachian Mountains
Hike the Southern Blue Ridge Mountains with a local expert and learn about the region’s abundant wildflowers, natural history and distinctly Appalachian folklore.
Rating (4.81)
Program No. 17288RJ
6 days
Starts at

At a Glance

Lace up your hiking boots and explore the scenic trails and natural wonders of the Southern Blue Ridge Mountains in a small group with a hiking naturalist who reveals the wonders of wildflowers and mountain life. Walk along the southern portion of the Appalachian Trail, through the Nantahala National Forest and spend your evenings immersed in tales of Appalachian folklore and natural history.
Activity Level
Outdoor: Spirited
Hiking 4-8 miles per day on varied terrain. Elevations up to 5,500 feet.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Hike to spots above 5,000 feet like Standing Indian Mountain and take advantage of exquisite views.
  • Walk on sections of the famous Appalachian Trail, including the Muskrat Creek Shelter portion, Winding Stair Gap and Siler Bald.
  • On sections of the "Chunky Gal" Trail study the natural history of the area with a local trail and nature expert.

General Notes

The Retreat Difference: The unique experience at a Road Scholar Retreat includes opportunities for early morning exercise, interaction with the local community for insight into local life, an authentic farm-to-table or locally sourced meal, a live performance or event, and a single room to yourself for only $100 more (for many programs). Women-Only departure is available on this program.
Featured Expert
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Liz Domingue
Liz Domingue is a professional naturalist, educator and photographer with extensive experience in exploring and studying the natural world. As the originator and operator of Just Get Outdoors, she leads interpretive hikes and photography workshops, and conducts environmental education programs for youth, adults, and fellow educators. Through her workshops, Liz encourages awareness, understanding, enjoyment, and stewardship of our natural world.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

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Liz Domingue
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Doris Gove
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Suggested Reading List
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