You know Spring has arrived when the first group of northbound thru-hikers arrives on the Appalachian Trail from Springer Mountain, Georgia. They have been hiking for a few weeks and are ready to eat some good food, enjoy a cold beer and find provisions.
And just as the hikers are excited to arrive in town, the townsfolk are eager to begin gardening and see spring flowers in bloom. By early March, daffodils and wildflowers are blooming. Later in the month the dogwood, redbud and flowering fruit trees display their vibrant color.
Leaves Grow Up the Mountain
When Spring arrives in Hot Springs, the new foliage emerges first in the warmer lower elevations of the town and French Broad River Valley. As the season unfolds, the fresh green color appears to travel up the mountainsides for a few weeks until it reaches the top of Round Top, Deer Park and Hot Springs Mountains. This is the reverse of Fall when the color begins at higher elevations and cascades down the slopes to the valley below.
A Celebration of the Appalachian Trail
For over 20 years, Hot Springs has celebrated Spring and the arrival of hikers on the Appalachian Trail with the Hot Springs TrailFest. Held in late April in the middle of town, the event celebrates hiking and outdoor recreation.
The event is managed by a local committee of business owners and trail enthusiasts. Thru-hikers, locals and visitors enjoy live music, speakers, hiker games, a plastic duck race in Spring Creek, food, gear and information vendors, raffles and more.
See our Events Calendar for more information about TrailFest and other Spring Festivals.
Springtime Hiking is Beautiful
Temperatures in Spring are ideal for enjoying a delightful day of hiking in the mountains. The air is clear, cool and very refreshing. Wear layered clothing as it is chilly in the morning and warmer during the afternoon. Views are picturesque and expansive before the tree foliage fully emerges in May. Wildflowers, like trillium, start to bloom and flame azaleas show their bright orange and pink colors.
Relax With a Hot Mineral Bath
Hot Springs is one of the few locations on the East Coast blessed with natural Hot Mineral Springs. Located on the grounds of the Hot Springs Resort & Spa, the springs are clear, clean and geothermally heated to 102-103 degrees. This natural water is piped into modern Jacuzzi-style tubs at the edge of the French Broad River and Spring Creek. Soaking for an hour will warm and relax you after a day of outdoor activities. The Spa also offers a number of spa treatments to top off a great spring day.