National Geographic : 1952 Oct
GatUnburg S"- Great Smoky Mountains Naionail Park Boundary 476 Great Smoky Mountains National Park Straddles the Crest of the Appalachians Congress authorized the park in 1926; Tennessee and North Carolina deeded lands, and John D. Rocke feller, Jr., matched State funds. Now the park contains 508,446 acres, of which two-fifths remains virgin forest. This playground lies within easy reach of eastern city dwellers. Sixteen peaks rise above 6,000 feet. This sound advice we all ignored. Liz and Ruby, bird and flower books in hand, disap peared around the bend of an inviting path, while the rest of us sat lazily around, listen ing to a near-by tumbling stream. After din ner we kept warm by a roaring fire, singing ballads and telling stories. Then, by flashlight, Gen and I struggled to blow up our air mattresses, find our sleeping bags, and rummage through duffel bags for soap and toothbrushes. Gen couldn't find her blanket. "Here is one Florida cracker who'll sleep cold tonight," she said. We pulled our bedding close to the fire and tried to sleep. But sleep outdoors does not come easily to one used to four walls and a ceiling. Now our walls were moonlit sycamores, tulip trees, and maples; our ceiling the stars.