Mountains symbolize stillness, firmness, and eternity. It is considered as the center of the world by ancient cultures. If you are fond of hiking, you probably know the Appalachian mountains with the longest trail in the world. The Appalachian mountains are the tremendous highland system in Eastern North America.
When hiking, it is also essential to research the mountains and trails that you will take trekking. Learning about its history and landmarks will give you extra knowledge about what to do or where to go. So if you are interested in the Appalachian Mountains, here are some three interesting facts you need to know.
The Name’s Origin and The Oldest Mountain Range
The name Appalachian comes from the Native American tribe that resides in the area, which is called the Apalchen or Apalachen, and soon changed by the Spanish to Apalachee. The Narváez expedition first set foot in the Apalachee territory in the year 1528. In that year, they applied the name Appalachian.
Now, it is the fourth oldest European named place in the United States. Another one of the Appalachian Mountains facts is that it was first formed during the Ordovician period, 480 million years ago. Therefore, it was also called the oldest mountain range in the North America region, older than the Rocky mountains.
The Appalachian Mountains are partly in Canada but mostly located in the United States. It extends from Southern Canada to Central Alabama in the United States. The Appalachian mountains have thirteen regions grouped into three divisions: the northern, the central, and the southern range.
The northern region includes mountains such as Vermont’s Green Mountains, New Hampshire’s White Mountains, Long Range Mountains on Newfoundland’s island, the Notre Dame ranges in Quebec, and Maine’s Mount Katahdin. The central range has Pennsylvania’s Poconos, a large Blue Ridge mountains section, and the Catskill Mountains of New York.
As for the southern range, this area covers Unaka Mountains, the Great Smoky Mountains, and the Cumberland Plateau. The highest mountains are mostly in the northern section, with Mount Katahdin in Maine, other summits in New Hampshire’s the White Mountains rising over five thousand feet, and the highest pinnacle in the Appalachian range, the Mount Mitchell.
Mount Mitchell, formerly known as the Black Dome, is the highest mountain in the United States east of the Mississippi River, reaching above 6,684 feet. It is also the highest peak in eastern North America. Mount Mitchell’s peak experiences moderately cold winter and mild summer. The weather is more alike to Southern Canada compared to the southeastern of the United States.
Did you know that the Appalachian forests have various species of squirrels? Apparently, the Appalachian forest is the habitat for five species of tree squirrel. The most frequently seen in the area is the Eastern Gray Squirrel. The Southern Flying Squirrel is also known as the Assapan, a much smaller squirrel than the others.
Another tree squirrel species that houses the Appalachian forests is the fox squirrel, the largest tree squirrel species. The Red Squirrels are commonly known as the pine squirrels, and the Northern Flying Squirrel has a close resemblance to the Southern Flying Squirrel.
Both the Northern Flying Squirrel and Southern Flying Squirrel have gray-brown fur, thus the similarity, but there is a way to tell the difference between them. Southern flying squirrels have an all-white belly fur, while the Northern Flying Squirrel has gray-colored belly fur. As previously mentioned, southern flying squirrels are smaller, with eight to ten inches in length.
Over ten thousand hikers conquered all through the Appalachian Mountains. This natural beauty offered so much that you can not only hike with these mountains, but you get to visit different beautiful sites. So if ever you prefer to take a hike in the Appalachian Mountains or other mountains, it is best to consider having a look into its physical features and some facts.