Springtime Flowers, Waterfalls and Forests in the Smokies
April 25–29, 2023
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park sits atop the Spine of Time, a rugged 6000-foot mountain divide between North Carolina and Tennessee. The Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the most biologically diverse in the entire National Park System, hosting more than 19,000 plant and animal species.
We will expertly guide you through this magnificent mountain wilderness and teach you how to best capture the Park’s old-growth forests, sweeping mountain vistas, cascading mountain rivers, bubbling streams, waterfalls, and vernal wildflowers. April and May are the wildflower months in the Smokies with different species blooming at different times, so bring your macro lens to capture some of the local colors up-close. The sunrises and sunsets with stacked layers of blue mountains are iconic Smoky Mountain scenes, and these images will stand out in your portfolio.
We will spend ample time helping you process your photos and giving instant feedback and critiques throughout the workshop so you can put what you’ve learned to use right away.
Our workshop group is small, and every need is taken care of for you in advance. All you need to do is show up and focus on learning in one of the crown jewels of U.S. National Parks. Come join us. The Great Smoky Mountains await!
This itinerary is subject to change due to weather, local conditions, and other factors.
April 25, 2023: Arrive into Knoxville, Tennessee Airport (TYS) before 1:00 PM today. Pick up available at 1:00 PM for all who need a ride from the airport to the hotel. We meet in the hotel at 3:00 PM for orientation and Q&A before going out into the park for an evening photography session along the Little River. Dinner.
April 26, 2023: Early wake-up call and sunrise shoot on Foothills Parkway-West. After breakfast, we will do a morning shoot in the Tremont area of the park with river scenics and wildflowers. After lunch, we will drive to Greenbrier for more river scenics, macro photography, wildflowers, and finish up at Clingmans Dome for sunset. Dinner.
April 27, 2023: Sunrise shoot at the Oconoleftee Overlook and then breakfast in Gatlinburg. The remainder of the morning, we will photograph a local waterfall or wildflower patch at Hardwood Cove Trail. After lunch, we will do some forest scenics and sunset at Morton’s Overlook. Dinner .
April 28, 2023: Sunrise shoot at Clingmans Dome and breakfast in Gatlinburg. Afternoon critique and Lightroom/Photoshop session and lunch break. In the afternoon, we will do literal and abstract river reflections and either more river scenics in Elkmont or a nearby sunset location.
April 29, 2023: Sunrise and morning shoot in Cades Cove photographing flowering dogwoods, country roads, and old homesteads from the 1930’s. Final critique session at the hotel and finish up at noon. Flights home can be anytime after 3:00 PM from Knoxville Airport (TYS).
Easy: You are able to handle easy walks of no more than a half mile.
Arrive McGhee Tyson Airport (TYS), Knoxville, Tennessee before 1:00 PM on April 25, 2023. Flights out can be made after 3:00 PM on April 29, 2023.
What to Bring
Please see our page How To Prepare For Your Workshop. We will send you a detailed information document 90 days before your workshop. This document will include specifics of where and when to meet, gear and clothing recommendations, and more.
- Double occupancy lodging. Single available for $600 supplement.
- All meals, soft drinks, and snacks during the workshop
- All permits and park fees
- All transportation during the workshop
- Photographic guiding and instruction from 2 pros
- Image reviews and post-processing instruction
- Adventure, fun, inspiration, and a great time!
- Travel to and from Knoxville, Tennessee.
- Passport and visa fees (if applicable).
- Any meals or accommodations before or after the workshop dates.
- Items of a personal nature.
- Alcoholic beverages.
- Travel Medical and Trip Cancellation Insurance (optional, but recommended).
- Anything else specifically not listed as included.
- Single rooming available for $600 supplement.
“Could not have been happier with Talor. She's pleasant, upbeat, super-knowledgeable and full of energy. So impressed with Talor's ability to demonstrate Lightroom techniques. ”
“It exceeded my expectations. Access to areas of the Valley that are off limits to the general population made the trip exceptional. I was very pleasantly surprised at the photographic opportunities that this workshop provided and very happy with the learning opportunities provided by Tom and Greg. ”