The Great Smoky Mountains National Park sometimes referred to as the Great Smokies or Great Smokey Mountains are part of the Appalachian system, on the North Carolina - Tennessee border; highest range East of the Mississippi and one of the oldest uplands on earth. The mountains are named for the smoke like haze that envelops them. More than 25 peaks rise over 6,000 ft. The Great Smokies are noted for their many species of trees and a great variety of flowering plants. Nearly 40% of the forest is virgin growth. Black bears are among the most well-known of the many animals and birds in the Great Smokies.
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