The Ultimate Guide To Asheville and the Western North Carolina Mountains
The Ultimate Guide to Asheville & the Western North Carolina Mountains

The Online Version of the Best-selling Regional Guidebook
 

All about rain forests of the world

Joyce Kilmer
Memorial Forest

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In Joyce Kilmer Memorial Foest, photograph by Jerry Greer 

   This 526,798-acre Nantahaha National Forest located to the west of Asheville is home to the Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest, one of the nation’s most impressive preserves of old-growth forest. Here you may view magnificent examples of over 100 species of trees, including hemlocks and tulip-poplars over 20 feet in circumference and 100 feet high. Some of these trees are over 450 years old. Explored Joyce Kilmerin 1540 by Spanish Conquistador Hernando DeSoto and established in 1920 under the 1911 Weeks Act, this 3,800-acre forest was set aside in 1936 as a memorial to Joyce Kilmer, the soldier/poet who wrote the famous poem “Trees.”
     The only way to see the impressive memorial forest is on foot. The figure-eight Joyce Kilmer National Recreation Trail covers 2 miles and has two loops: the 1.25-mile lower loop passes the Joyce Kilmer Memorial plaque, and the upper 0.75-mile loop swings through Poplar Cove—a grove of the forest’s largest trees. The trailhead parking area has a flush toilet and picnic tables. No camping or overnight parking is allowed.

The figure-eight
Joyce Kilmer National Recreation Trail covers
2 miles and has two loops: the 1.25-mile
lower loop passes the Joyce Kilmer Memorial
plaque, and the upper 0.75-mile loop swings
through Poplar Cove—a grove of the forest’s
largest trees. The trailhead parking area has a
flush toilet and picnic tables. No camping or
overnight parking is allowed.

Website: Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest
Location: West of
Asheville
Distance: 2-3 hours from Asheville
Address: Cheoah District Ranger Office, 1133 Massey Branch Rd.,
Robbinsville, NC 28771
Telephone: Nantahala National Forest Cheoah District Ranger 828-479-6431
Hours: Ranger Office: April-November Daily 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.; December-March 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday
Fees: None
Tips: Wear good hiking shoes
Resources: National Forests in North Carolina, 160 Zillicoa Street, Suite A, Asheville NC 28801; 828-257-4200
Nearby: Fontana Lake, Lake Santeetlah, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Nantahala National Forest
Directions: Take I-40W to Exit 27. Exit right onto U.S. 19/74 toward Waynesville. Go about 47 miles, and bear right on NC 28N. Go 5 miles, and turn left on NC 143 to Robbinsville. From Robbinsville take NC 143W. After about 12 miles, turn right on Joyce Kilmer Road (SR1134). Go 2 miles and turn left to memorial forest.

 

 

 

  

 

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