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Event: Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage

April 26, 2022 - April 30, 2022

72nd Annual Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage
Great Smoky Mountains National Park

26-30 April
COVID POLICY.  For our 2022 event we will require proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative test in the days prior to the event for all leaders and pilgrims.  We are currently negotiating with a professional, external company, like ones many of you have dealt with during travel or for concert participation.  At this time “full vaccination” status is through the second dose, but that may change if the CDC shifts the definition of “full vaccination” to include boosters.  Ultimately, we will follow the CDC definitions.

Throughout the long history of the Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park (SWFP GSMNP), the underlying mission and philosophy has simply been to bring people together to fellowship, form connections, bonds, and friendships through a common interest focused on spreading curiosity, knowledge, appreciation, and education of natural history, biology, ecology, conservation, and land management.

Our programming is extensive and biologically diverse
Since 1950, this annual event in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park has featured professionally-guided walks, exhibits, and other learning opportunities to explore the region’s rich natural and cultural resources. In recent times, more than 900 pilgrims from more than 32 states and several countries joined us.  Our programs include fungi, ferns, wildflowers, trees and shrubs, medicinal plants, insects (terrestrial and aquatic), salamanders and snakes, birds, mammals (bats to bears), journaling, art and photography, and park history.  For more information on what hikes we offer, take a look at our example program on the home page.

Our mission is inherently inclusive
To our knowledge, the organizers of this annual event have always believed in creating open, educational opportunities for all people to engage and access experts in their fields from many disciplines and walks of life.  We strive to offer better, safer, more comfortable access to these amazing experiences for all people regardless of race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, ability, socioeconomic background, or political views. We have always, and we will continue to work to welcome all pilgrims and leaders with a genuine interest in learning and engaging with nature. If you have ideas, thoughts, concerns, or comments, please feel free to share them with us so that we may expand our perspectives and thoughts on how we can improve.

Join us at the Pilgrimage
We encourage you to join us in our efforts to engage and educate folks through experiential programs. Whether you are coming as an individual for your first pilgrimage, you are a teacher seeking to bring a student group, you are a family seeking to educate your children, or you are a naturalist interested in getting involved, contact us at


April 26, 2022
April 30, 2022
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