Visit Roan Mountain

Published 3:21 pm Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Friday, May 1
Morning Bird Walk – 8 a.m. – ? – Meet Larry McDaniel of the Friends of Roan Mountain at Picnic Shelter 1 at 8 a.m. for an easy walk looking for migrating and resident birds in the park. This is a great time of year to find warblers, tanagers, thrushes and many other species. We will walk around the area and optionally drive to another location in the park if time permits. Bring binoculars if you have them or I can lend some for those who don’t. Wear sturdy enough shoes for easy off pavement walking. This is a free program with no registration required.
Meet at Picnic Shelter #1
Saturday, June 6
Outdoor Photography Workshop Adventure – 8 a.m. – 1 p.m. – Join David Duplessis of Tennessee Photographs and a Park Ranger for an amazing ALL-DAY photography workshop through Roan Mountain State Park! The photographic opportunities are almost endless from the gorgeous arboreal forests, trails and rivers, to the mountain views and idyllic valleys there’s beautiful scenery every where you look.
After the workshop is over (around 1p.m.), an optional caravan trip is available up to the top of Roan Mountain to enjoy the Cloudland Trail and Rhododendron Garden.
Plan to meet at the Gristmill Visitors Center at 7:45 a.m. The workshop will start promptly at 8 a.m. We will caravan and hike around the park to different points of interest throughout the day, like:
– Peg Leg Mine & Trail
– Cloudland Trail
– The Doe River
– Miller Homestead (where we’ll picnic)
– Chestnut Ridge Overlook
– Riverside Trail
– And more!
Please bring your DSLR & lenses*. There will be hiking involved (some short but strenuous bursts in places) so please bear that in mind and wear appropriate clothing and shoes**. Also, be sure to bring plenty of water/fluids as well as your own snacks & lunch.
*All you really need to bring with you is your favorite camera and a sense of adventure. But…you are also encouraged to bring a tripod/monopod, shutter release, your collection of lenses, filters, etc., Basically, bring what YOU want to use and are comfortable with! **The top of Roan Mountain can be significantly cooler and wetter then the valley below, it’s fun and unpredictable that way. So there is a possibility you and your gear might get wet. So please be aware of that, and pack accordingly.
Meet at Visitor Center Porch.
Saturday-Sunday, June 20-21
Rhododendron Festival – 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. – Since 1947, the community of Roan Mountain has celebrated each June to herald in the blooming of the famous Catawba Rhododendron along the highlands of the Roan. Join us at Roan Mountain State Park on Saturday and Sunday, June 20-21, from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. for a true mountain celebration. Aside from the natural beauty of the blooming Rhododendron, people from all over the world come to enjoy the flavors of local cuisine, browse local crafts and arts, and take in the music of the region.
The Festival will be held around the Roan Mountain State Park amphitheater and pool. Parking is by donation to local civic groups in the park fields along-side Hwy. 143. For more information about this event, visit the Roan Mountain Citizen’s Club website at
Meet at: Park Amphitheater
Saturday, June 27
Independence Day Celebration – Join Roan Mountain State Park for a 4th of July Weekend celebration! The park will be hosting a line-up of fun activities for kids and adults alike. Times to be determined. The actual Saturday of the 4th of July will offer various fireworks shows and events in the surrounding communities.
Our Field Game line-up and times will be announced closer to the event date, but expect the following: 4th July Bicycle Parade and Contest, Tug-O’-War, Corn Hole Tournament, Various Relay Races.
Meet at Picnic Shelter 3 in the Campground.
Saturday, June 27
TN Promise Saturday – 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. – Attention TN Promise Students! Roan Mountain State Park will be hosting a volunteer workday on Saturday, June 27, alongside various other parks and agencies across the state. TN Promise students will meet at the Park Headquarters starting at 8 a.m. and assist the park with trail work and conservation projects ending at 4 p.m. Students will be able to earn their 8 hours for TN Promise requirements or work a portion of the day. Work details will be announced closer to the workday so check back often. Workers are encouraged to wear proper outdoor work gear (close-toed shoes, work clothes, etc.) and bring plenty of water.
Meet at Park Headquarters.
Saturday, June 27
Miller Farmstead Butterfly Walk – 1 p.m. – ? – Meet Larry McDaniel with the Friends of Roan Mountain at the Miller Farmstead at 1 p.m. for an easy walk looking for butterflies and other insects. We should see swallowtails, whites, sulphurs, hair streaks, blues, fritillaries, ladies and more. We will walk around the grounds of the farmstead enjoying vast views of the 6.8 acre certified Monarch Waystation. Binoculars are helpful and wear sturdy enough shoes for easy off pavement walking.
Meet at Miller Farmstead Parking Lot.
Monday – Friday, July 6-10
2020 Junior Ranger Camp – Roan Mountain State Park proudly offers our 2020 Junior Ranger Camp to 30 individual youth ages 8-12. Junior Rangers at Roan Mountain will take part in outdoor classes focusing on safety, wildlife, plants, astronomy, water, and history. Each day, Junior Rangers will set off on adventures around Roan Mountain State park learning and playing in the outdoors. Camp this year will take part this year from Monday, July 6, through Friday, July 10. Activity details and times will be available soon and a schedule will be posted for download. This camp is limited to 30 and registration will begin on May 1 and end May 16. Registration details will be posted on our Facebook Page and this page soon.
Saturday, July 18
Morning Light Moth Party  – 6 a.m. – 8 a.m. – Stop by Conference Center between 6 and 8 a.m. on July 18 (early is better) to meet Larry McDaniel of the Friends of Roan Mountain and see what moths and other night flying insects were attracted to the moth lights. The lights will be set up and left on Friday night so to attract all sorts of unique insect visitors. We should see many species of moths including silkworms, sphinx and tigers. This is a good way to photograph moths. Smart phone cameras work great. Stop by any time for this free, no-registration activity.
Meet at: Park Headquarters.

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