Islands in the Air: The Spruce-Fir Forests of the Great Smoky Mountains

The spruce-fir forest of the southern Appalachians is one of the rarest ecosystems in North America, occurring only at elevations above 4500 feet. Over 70 percent of this ecosystem’s worldwide range exists within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Ten thousand years ago, North America was frozen in an ice age. Mile-thick ice sheets stretched … Continue reading