Back to Roan Mountain
It's been a while since my last post. May was a month of record and flooding rains in western North Carolina. In the last two weeks of May, most of this area had in excess of 25 inches of rain. Waterfalls and streams had unheard amounts of water flowing through them. Many trails were closed with washouts and mudslides. Five people killed and damage in certain areas was extensive. So landscape photography took a bit of pause. Additionally, the Blue Ridge Parkway was closed and only reopened after most of the rhododendron bloom was past.
I had been looking forward to hiking the Appalachian Trail on Roan Mountain to catch the blooming rhododendrons and blaze azaleas but a bad back kept me sidelined until this past Monday. This has been a poor year for rhododendrons just about everywhere in western North Carolina and Roan Mountain was no exception. Even during peak blooms, blossoms were sparse. When I hiked there this week the vast majority of rhododendrons were gone, past peak or not able to be put into a favorable photo composition. While the blaze azaleas were a bit better, the bright sunny day didn't help matters either. On the hike back from Grassy Ridge, there was more cloud cover and I did find this one good bush of healthy blossoms on Round Bald. This was my only "good" shot of the day so I'm glad I saw it.
I'll be hoping for a better blooming season next year.
Keywords: azaleas, blaze, blue, clouds, flowers, forest, landscape, mountain, mountains, nature, nikon, petals, ridge, roan, trees
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