Great Smoky is teetering the line between use and overuse. Here’s what needs to happen to protect the United States’ most beloved park—and all of our public lands.
Anna King, of Greenville, South Carolina, remembers the synchronous fireflies of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. “One firefly goes off, sparking the others around them, and it’s like a blanket of flickering lights coming toward you,” she says. “It dies down for a few seconds, and then they do it again. It seems as if there are millions of them.”
Campsites at the Elkmont Campground are reserved within minutes of opening for a slot between the end of May and the beginning of June to catch the natural lightshow.