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  • UPDATED Carvers Gap to Grassy Ridge Bald by the AT

UPDATED Carvers Gap to Grassy Ridge Bald by the AT

  • 06/25/2022
  • 5:15 AM - 1:00 PM
  • Carvers Gap Parking Lot at Roan Mountain


  • Both members and visitors may register.

Registration is closed

SANP Field Event

UPDATED Cravers Gap to Grassy Ridge Bald by the AT

Saturday, June 25, 2022


Leader:  Dale Potter               Phone:  (865) 773-8114             E-mail:

Meeting place: Carvers Gap Parking Lot at Roan Mountain

Time:  5:15 am

Registration available:  Beginning today

 This event has been updated as of June 18th.

Jack Benhayon suggested doing a sunset from this area as he was recently there. As a result of his suggestion there will be two options.  The sunset will be something to consider later this year along with possible milky way or night shots. 

Option #1 Sunrise at Jane Bald starting from trailhead at 5:15 am. This is a mile hike from the trailhead to Jane Bald.  To see what a sunrise on a good morning can look like visit this link.    For more information about sunrise at Jane Bald visit this link.  If the weather cooperates this could be a great morning for a sunrise. This article shares some more information about the sunrise. Check it out here.  This option allows you a chance to get a sunrise shot without spending all day on the balds.

Option #2 Starts at Carvers Gap at 7:30 am. This is a shorter hike than Gregory Bald would be for the Flame Azaleas but with the chance to see Flame Azaleas, Rhododendron, and Gray's Lily that is indigenous to that area. If you are not familiar with Gray's Lilly, Mr. Google can assist you.  This adventure will start on the AT.  We will cross Round Bald, Jane Bald before arriving at Grassy Ridge Bald.  In addition to the wildflowers you will be able to observe, you will have several landscape options from the three different balds. 

The hiking distance is 5-6 miles roundtrip.  It is a moderate hike. For more information about the area and the what you may see, visit Alltrails at this link.

Option #3 for those that want to hang out.  If you are so inclined to hang out until about 8:45 pm you will be able to do a sunset at any of the three Balds but it will be a very long day even if you start with Option #2.  You will probably want to stay an extra night at the hotel of your choice once you are off the trail.  You will be on your own for this option.  You may have a better chance at getting a sunset than sunrise depending on the weather.  

From Knoxville this is about a two and half hour drive which will require an early start or you may decide to stay over in the Johnson City area which will shorten the morning drive. Baymont Inn, Super 8 and Red Roof have the best rates, but there are several other options.  If you plan to drive up on Friday night and stay over, email me and let me know.

Why the early start?  The parking lot will fill up quickly as this is considered one of the peak weeks for this area.  This should allow us to get on the trail and have decent lighting at some of the stops. We will do this hike as photographers at a slower pace than hikers we may meet on the trail.

Let me know which option you prefer when you sign up.

Meeting Location:  

Carvers Gap Parking Lot Roan Mountain


Learning opportunities:

This will give you a chance to practice on panorama shots and close up of the flowers.  You may find a tripod to be useful along with various filters.    

What to bring:

  • A headlamp if you are doing Option #1 or #3.
  • Your favorite DSLR camera and lens. Extra batteries.
  • Bring appropriate weather gear. This event will be in the open so you will want head covering and sunscreen.
  • Tripod can be useful.
  • Filters to reduce sunlight may be useful.  
  • Rain gear for yourself and a rain cover for your camera in case we have rain.
  • Bring snacks, food for lunch, and more than a small bottle of water. It is important to stay hydrated.

Remember to dress for the weather.  


Driving directions:  Carvers Gap Trailhead Parking Lot.  For a view of the map on Google visit this link.  The time may be different depending on your location in Knoxville.

Restrooms:  Portables at Carver Gap Parking lot and various locations on the trail.

How to Find Me: Red Jeep Wrangler

Contacts:     Jerry Whaley, President       Julie Glibbery, Membership Manager       General Information

Southern Appalachian Nature Photographers is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization located near the Smoky Mountains in East Tennessee.
Mailing address: 1143 Oak Ridge Turnpike, Ste 107A-231, Oak Ridge, TN 37830
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