Originally one of the ten Bowater Company Pocket Wilderness Areas and named after two waterfalls -- Laurel Falls (80 feet) and Snow Falls (35 feet). In addition to the falls, the area features a couple of overlooks, steep gorges, boulder strewn creeks, and remnants of mining activity. Our hike starts up Richland Creek where we will pass an old mine tunnel and Dayton reservoir. After crossing a 50-foot metal bridge over Laurel Creek (1.5 miles), we will take the east trail to Laurel Falls (2.5 miles) and Bryan Overlook (3.5 miles) where we will have a view of the Tennessee Valley from a height of 1700 feet. Bryan Overlook is named after William Jennings Bryan prosecutor in the Scopes Monkey Trial held in nearby Dayton. The hike is 7 miles round trip. Rated moderate to difficult. The driving distance is about 70 miles from West Knoxville. Preregister with BJ and Bob Perlack: [masked];[masked].
Gerry Moll from the Native Plant Rescue Squad (NPRS) will be presenting about an innovative conservation project that he welcomes you to take part in. Please join Gerry as he presents on how (NPRS) makes use of native plants, slated for destruction to build healthy, vibrant habitat on urban and suburban land. Gerry and Joy Grissom founded the organization in the spring of 2015 with the mission of becoming an educational non-profit organization dedicated to the conservation and restoration of the rich diversity of the native flora in East Tennessee. NPRS works with entities such as builders, developers, and landowners to rescue native plants that would otherwise be destroyed during clearing, building, or development. The rescued plants are then made available for educational opportunities or restoration projects with the goal of increasing the overall ecological health of our region.
A great recap for our biodiversity tour since we will be visiting many of the lower elevation forest types on this trip with fall colors. Distance, 7 miles. Rated Moderate. One-way drive, 45 miles. Preregister with Mac Post at[masked] or [masked] (email preferred).
The Department of Energy (DOE) has issued a Proposed Plan to build a new landfill on the Oak Ridge Reservation. The landfill, the Environmental Management Disposal Facility (EMDF) is intended for disposal of radioactive, hazardous and toxic wastes.
The Sierra Club has invited the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC), and the DOE to be available for questions from the public regarding EMDF on Thursday, October 11, 2018 from 2to 8 PM at the TDEC office (761 Emory Valley Road, Oak Ridge).
This will be a walkthrough poster session. Please follow the signs for parking and enter through the back of the building (south side).
Please note that public comments cannot be accepted at this availability session. All public comments must be submitted directly to DOE in writing or at the formal public comment hearing on October 18th.
For further information, please email Axel Ringe at [masked]
Insects are often misunderstood and underappreciated. Join amateur naturalist Nickolus Strahlman as he dives into the incredible diversity of insects across the world. From giant walking sticks in Australia to fungi-gardening termites in Zimbabwe, join Nick as he illustrates the A-Z of the some of the most interesting insects our planet has to offer. Unfortunately, natural beauty and incredible adaptations may not be enough for insects to thrive in the modern world. The slideshow will conclude with a talk about the current status of insect populations in the U.S. and the rising concern regarding their decline.
Who doesn’t love running around in a sunny field with a butterfly net? Monarchs migrate en masse to Mexico every year for the winter, and we would like to learn more about their migration and population status by tagging them. Migrating monarch butterflies have been monitored in Cade’s Cove for many years. Participants also catch and identify other butterfly and insect species. We’ll set up on a spot in Cades Cove and catch butterflies from there. Rated easy. One-way drive, 50 miles. Preregister with Mac Post at 865-[masked] or [masked] (email preferred).
What does climate change and the Paris Climate Agreement mean to us locally, nationally, and for the world? Come and hear Rev. Wayne Thomas talk about what science tells us about climate change, and what the Unite States agreed to in the Paris Climate Agreement. He will present data surrounding climate change predictions, both domestically and globally, and guide participants through the thought process - and accountability - behind the Paris Climate Agreement.
Few short trails are a memorable as Flat Creek Trail. Rated easy. Great views of the Smokies Range, especially Mount Guyot, from this high elevation hike through hardwood forests typical of northeastern US and Canada. Total hike distance out and back is 5.2 miles and rated easy to moderate. One-way drive, 85 miles. Preregister with Mac Post at 865-[masked] or [masked] (email preferred).
Our annual picnic is a chance to get together for a few hours with good food and good friends. It's very informal, and even if you're not a "regular" at HBG meetings, we welcome you to this event. It's a good chance to chat with other members to catch up on what we're doing and find out if you'd like to get involved in outings, program meetings, or environmental action.
The picnic will be held on August 14 at Holston River Park, located in East Knoxville on the banks of the Holston River. This park has very nice paved walking trails as well as large open fields, plus a dog park. We'll gather at Shelter #2, which is near the boat ramp and fishing area on the north end of the park. The hours are from 5:00 PM until the park closes at 8 PM. The parking near Shelter #2 may be limited, so you may have to park at the large parking lot near the larger shelter and walk a bit from the main parking area. This shelter should be cooler because of nearby trees, and it's also closer to the River, in case anyone wants to fish or just relax on the little pier by the boat ramp. HBG will provide hotdogs, and both hamburgers and veggie burgers. So just bring a side dish or dessert as your contribution.
To make sure we have enough hamburgers, hot dogs, and vegetarian equivalents available please RSVP by August 11 to Mac Post at [masked].
If anyone is interested, perhaps some of us could go a couple hours early and paddle the 4.5 miles to Ned McWherter Park (under the James White Parkway bridge) then shuttle back to the picnic. If you are interested in paddling, contact Ron Shrieves:[masked]; [masked] (email preferred). (You'd need to provide your own boat.)
Directions: From Parkside Drive, exit at the Hill Ave. and turn right onto Riverside Drive for 2.6 miles, then go left onto Holston Hills Road. The large parking lot is on the right about 0.3 mile, and the boat ramp parking area is another 0.2 mile, also on the right.
Snorkel the Canasauga River with the US Forest Service Fisheries Biologists. Streams in the Cherokee National Forest have an extraordinarily diverse assemblage of fish. In the crystal clear waters of the snorkeling site, it is typical to see 15 to 20 species of fish on any given day. The great variety, colors, and numbers of fish in the Conasauga River amaze even those who have snorkeled on marine coral reefs. Turtles, tadpoles and salamanders are usually present. Cost is $25 per snorkeler and includes Forest Service Biologist guide, lifeguard, wetsuits, masks and snorkels. Driving distance, 100. Preregister with Mac Post at[masked] or [masked] (email preferred).