Gilbert PT - March 2019


March 2019

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On March 1, 1872, Yellowstone National Park opened its gates for the first time. In addition to providing protection for over 67 species of mammals, 285 species of birds, and over 1,000 species of trees and plants, this national park provides jobs for over 400 people and gives over 4 million visitors natural sights to behold and trails to explore each year. In honor of this park’s 147th anniversary, I want to highlight two national parks located a little closer to home that have supplied my family and me with some of the most memorable vacations we’ve shared.

they’re called “The Smokies” due to the ever- present fog, the mountains in this region offer beautiful views and myriad hikes my family have enjoyed for years. The trail we return to every year is the Rainbow Falls Trail, which, as you can see from the photograph, has an idyllic natural waterfall at the trail’s end. In addition to the beauty of the ancient mountains, dense forest, and gushing waterfalls, this park also hands out badges for completed trails. One of my kids’ favorite traditions involves researching a new trail, hiking it, and then going into the ranger station to buy a badge signifying the name of the trail. They have quite the collection now!

the Atlantic coastline. It has seven peaks that reach above 1,000 feet, 158 miles of hiking trails, and 45 miles of carriage roads for bike riding. My wife and I have stayed in Bar Harbor, one of the entry towns to the park. As you can see from the photograph, the view of the ocean is nothing short of breathtaking. We love to sit and look out at the surrounding islands, watching as cruise liners meander in between them. As the temperature starts to rise, so too does my family’s excitement level for our hiking trips in 2019. Exploring the great outdoors has always played a significant role in my life, and I’m so grateful that my wife and kids love hiking as much as I do. If you are looking for a great new place to take your family, I would highly recommend either of these national parks. The views alone are enough to make these trips worth your while!

1. Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Situated around one of America’s oldest mountain ranges, this national park is my favorite to visit. It comprises ridge upon ridge of seemingly endless forest on the border between North Carolina and Tennessee. While

2. Acadia National Park

While its landscape is vastly different from that of Smoky Mountains National Park, Acadia, located in Maine, is equally as spectacular. Referred to as the “crown jewel of the North Atlantic coast,” this park protects the natural beauty of the highest rocky headlands along

–Dr. Gilbert | 1

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