Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Blue Ridge ParkwayGet more info
If you’re chasing expansive autumn views, the Great Smoky Mountains have it covered in some of the country’s brightest hues. And this year, peak time to peep fall landscapes should actually extend from October to November, says Gyselman. She suggests making sure you take a drive over the Blue Ridge Parkway, where you can see a jaw-dropping line-up of leaves. You’ll also get your wildlife fix; there are herds of elk scattered throughout the grounds.
For guided backpacking and camping trips through this southern nature escape, check REI’s site for options. Leaders will take you to some of the season’s best viewing spots.
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