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Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest

“I think that I shall never see/ A poem lovely a tree/ A tree whose hungry mouth is prest/ Against the Earth’s sweet flowing breast.” Come on now… don’t act like you didn’t have to read that poem in freshmen lit! We all did! Maybe you had to memorize it; I don’t know, but I do know that Mr Joyce (he’s a dude) Kilmer did write it and everyone loved the poem SOOO much that they gave it (him and his poem) a memorial Forest – a nice one too.

“I think that I shall never see/ A poem lovely a tree/ A tree whose hungry mouth is prest/ Against the Earth’s sweet flowing breast.” Come on now… don’t act like you didn’t have to read that poem in freshmen lit! We all did! Maybe you had to memorize it; I don’t know, but I do know that Mr Joyce (he’s a dude) Kilmer did write it and everyone loved the poem SOOO much that they gave it (him and his poem) a memorial Forest – a nice one too.

The forest is filled with large yellow poplar trees, some of which are supposed to be over 400 years old. There are a few streams flowing through the forest, and some other regional plant life filling the forest floor

This forest, for the most part, isn’t too well known, so typically there are very few people there with you – you get the place to yourself… which is nice, as there are so many interesting trees to stop and take pictures of. Also, the main trail loop is fairly easy, so just about anyone should be able to make the small hike. I will say, go kind of early… it gets dark quickly under the dense tree covering… and take time to enjoy the drive there.

The road up to the trail head is beautiful and make sure you drive past the park up to the end of the road… there is a lookout area there with this nice platform hanging off the side of the mountain, with a tree going through it! DIRECTIONS: Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest is located about 15 miles from Robbinsville in the western part of Graham County. From Robbinsville, take Highway 129 North for 1½ miles to the junction with Highway 143 West (Massey Branch Road). Turn left and proceed West on Highway 143 for approximately 5.0 miles to a stop sign. Turn right onto Kilmer Road. You will drive for about 7.3 miles and arrive at the top of Santeetlah Gap and the junction with the Cherohala Skyway. Bear to your right and continue on for another 2½ miles to the entrance of the Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest. Turn left into the entrance and it is about ½ mile to the parking area. There are picnic tables, grills, and restrooms available.

WEBSITES: http://www.main.nc.us/graham/hiking/joycekil.html

http://www.westernncattractions.com/JKMF.htm

written by dudgrickbevins

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