North Carolina
Making Memories: A Blue Ridge & Smoky Mountain Expedition With Your Grandchild
Share your passion for the great outdoors with your grandchild as you hike, raft, ride a historic railroad and learn the story of the Blue Ridge and Smoky Mountains.
Program No. 21361RJ
5 days
Starts at
5 days
4 nights
12 meals
4B 4L 4D
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Getting There
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At a Glance

Explore the rugged, western North Carolina mountains with your grandchild as you hike and splash your way into a lifetime of memories. Together, learn about the history, science and culture of the stunningly beautiful landscapes that surround the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Great Smokies from expert naturalists. Experience exhilarating excursions that will take you up the mountains, down the river, through the forest and back in time as you learn about forest environments, railroad history, and the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Nation that claimed this land as its home centuries ago.
Activity Level
Outdoor: No Sweat
Hike up to two miles on moderate inclines. Walking and standing up to 90 minutes on field trips. Get in and out of raft, use paddles to help steer. Elevations of 2,300-5,500 feet.

Best of all, you'll ...

  • Venture into Great Smokey Mountains National Park for a hike and learn about the region’s wildlife.
  • Dive deep into Cherokee history and culture as you explore the Oconaluftee Indian Village, before taking in the beauty of the park from Waterrock Knob at sunset.
  • Journey to Bryson City to ride the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad across fertile valleys and over Lake Fontana to go river rafting on the Nantahala River.

General Notes

Program is for grandchildren ages 10-13.
Featured Expert
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Freeman Owle
Born and reared on the Cherokee Indian Reservation, Freeman Owle received a master’s degree from Florida State University. After teaching in the Cherokee school system, Freeman now teaches and lectures on Cherokee history and legends throughout the United States. He enjoys stone and wood carving, a legacy of his Cherokee ancestry.

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

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Freeman Owle
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Lee Knight
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Suggested Reading List
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