Walking on the Bald

Appalachian Trail - Roan Highlands

Image Credit: Photo by Travis Bordley, Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy

Spanning five mountain summits across the Tennessee-North Carolina border, the Roan Highlands contains one of the most epic sections of the Appalachian Trail. With grassy mountain balds, rhododendron gardens and rocky outcroppings, the Roan is also a biological treasure trove, with more rare and endangered species than the entire Smoky Mountains.

Amidst this land of biological plenty, second-home and resort development threaten certain parts of the Roan. Meanwhile, invasive species, including the wooly adelgid and feral hogs, are ravaging the balds.

In the Roan Highlands, OSI continues to come to the aid of land trusts with low-cost capital to help buffer and connect the Pisgah National Forest in North Carolina, the Cherokee in Tennessee, the Appalachian Trail and other special lands.

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