Synchronous Fireflies Great Smoky Mountains June 2018

Synchronous Fireflies Great Smoky Mountains June 2018. It’s never to early to start making plans to see the Synchronous Fireflies (and the Blue Ghost Fireflies) that will light up the night sky in late May and early June 2018 in the Great Smoky Mountains. Firefly viewing in the Smokies has become such a popular event that there are now several venues available to enjoy the spectacular shows

Synchronous Fireflies in Great Smoky Mountains June 2017

Blue Ghost Fireflies in North Carolina. (Photo Credit: Spencer Black | Blackvisual.com)

The Synchronous Firefly (Photinus carolinus) and the Blue Ghost Firefly (Phausis reticulata) are two species that are found only in the Southern Appalachian Mountains which include the Great Smokies. And during the short mating season in late May and early June, both firefly species put on quite a show to behold! The male Synchronous Fireflies flash their little green-yellow bioluminescent lanterns in unison for about 6-8 blinks and then they go dark for a few seconds creating a sublime wave of light throughout the forest. The male Blue Ghost Fireflies don’t flash their blue-white lanterns, instead they glow continuously just a few inches above the ground. The ethereal experience of either nighttime show should be on everyone’s bucket list!  National Park scientists mostly use air and soil temperatures to predict the timing of each year’s mating season.

Synchronous Fireflies with Great Smoky Mountains National Park, TN
One of the most popular places to view the Synchronous Fireflies is in Elkmont in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. This event has become so popular that a free lottery system was instituted this year for the $1.50 parking passes for the eight-day shuttle period to Elkmont. During this time of peak viewing, Elkmont is closed at nighttime with the exception of shuttle users and campers in Elkmont Campground. Dates for the 2018 Lottery and Elkmont Shuttle will be announced sometime in April 2018. HeySmokies will keep you updated, so be sure to check back with us. We’ll provide you all the details of what you need to know to register for the lottery. For more information in the meantime, visit Recreation.gov.

Synchronous Fireflies with Discover Life in America in Gatlinburg, TN
For a few nights during peak firefly viewing time, Discover Life in America hosts a fundraising event featuring nightly presentations and field walks at the Norton Creek Sanctuary near the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Tickets for the event are $100 each and the event is geared toward persons ages 10 and older. For reservations for this exclusive event, call Discover Life in America at 865-430-4757 or email todd@dlia.org.

Synchronous Fireflies in Cataloochee with Cataloochee Valley Tours
Take a Synchronous Firefly Night Walk with Cataloochee Valley Tours out of Waynesville, NC. Small groups of guests are outfitted with safety vests and flashlights for a walk to the tour company’s secret viewing locations! They’ll announce 2017 dates in January. Tour tickets are $100 per person. Tours are from 8:30 – 11:30 p.m. weather permitting. For more information, visit Cataloochee Valley Tours.

Blue Ghost Fireflies in DuPont State Recreational Forest near Asheville, NC
DuPont State Forest is located in Cedar Mountain, NC about 30 miles outside of Asheville. Due to the popularity of this location in recent years, some of the trails in the High Falls parking area will be closed during peak viewing season. Because the female Blue Ghosts stay on the ground, many have been killed by visitors wandering off of the designated trails. For more information, visit DuPont State Forest.

Fireflies on the Blue Ridge Parkway
Overlooks along the Blue Ridge Parkway are a great place to view starry nights as well as the fireflies in June! Usually the Blue Ridge Parkway Visitor Center in Asheville offers a family-friendly firefly viewing event. For more information, visit Blue Ridge Parkway Visitor Center.

Both firefly species are common in other areas of Southern Appalachia and just perhaps during the month of June, you stay outside until around 10:00 p.m. when it’s good and dark and you sit quietly, you may be surprised at the light show in your very own backyard!

HeySmokies left the crowds at Elkmont Campground and backpacked a bit further up Little River Trail to enjoy the show! Remember a permit is required for an overnight stay at a backcountry site. Happy Trails!

More Hey Smokies Features:

Greenbrier Open To Public
Greenbrier Open To Public...
Greenbrier Open To Public. Great Smoky Mountains National Park rangers announced the Greenbrier area of GSMNP reopened to all pub[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Tamale Recipe
Smoky Mountain Tamale Recipe...
Smoky Mountain Tamale recipe. Homemade tamales are always a Smoky Mountain special event! Did you know that the Smoky Mountains are on the [Read More >>]
Great Smoky Mountain Synchronous Firefly Lottery
Great Smoky Mountain Synchronous Firefly Lottery...
Smoky Mountain synchronous firefly dates announced. Great Smoky Mountain Synchronous Firefly Lottery will begin Friday, April, 30 2021 at 10[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Interstate Wildlife Crossing
Smoky Mountain Interstate Wildlife Crossing...
The Pigeon River gorge interstate wildlife crossing will provide safe passage for bear, elk and their furry friends! Smoky Mountain Intersta[Read More >>]
Cades Cove Car Ban
Cades Cove Car Ban...
The Cades Cove car ban will allow walkers, runners and bikers an opportunity to enjoy the Cove without the congestion and noise of cars. Cad[Read More >>]
Great Smoky Mountains National Park Nudist Colony Bares All
Great Smoky Mountains National Park Nudist Colony Bares All...
Great Smoky Mountains National Park Nudist Colony Bares All. Great Smoky Mountain officials announce the grand opening of the new Cades Cov[Read More >>]
No thumbnail available
Smoky Mountain Earth Day Trash Pick Up...
Smoky Mountain Earth Day Trash Pick Up will be held on Earth Day, April 22, 2021. This year Earth day reminds us to take care of and apprec[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Bears
Smoky Mountain Bears...
Smoky Mountain Bears are the symbol of the Smokies and sighting one is always a special event! With the tourist season in full swing and a recor[Read More >>]
Whiteoak Sink Wildlflower Hike
Whiteoak Sink Wildlflower Hike...
Whiteoak Sinks wildflower hikes are one of a kind! Whiteoak Sink Wildlflower Hike. Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials announced t[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Travel Advisory
Smoky Mountain Travel Advisory...
Smoky Mountain Travel Advisory. Smoky Mountain travel advisory. Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials announced that tree crews will[Read More >>]
Cades Cove Closure Scheduled
Cades Cove Closure Scheduled...
Cades Cove scheduled to close for road maintenance. Cades Cove Closure Scheduled. Smoky Mountains National Park officials have announced the[Read More >>]
No thumbnail available
Remember When, Lost Smoky Mountain Attractions - Rebel Railroad and Goldrush Junction...
Dolly as the engineer on the historic #192 steam engine. Remember When, Lost Smoky Mountain Attractions - Rebel Railroad and Goldrush Juncti[Read More >>]
Alum Cave Trail Closes For Bridge Replacement
Alum Cave Trail Closes For Bridge Replacement...
Alum Cave Trail closes for bridge construction GSMNP officials will implement a temporary, weekday closure of Alum Cave Trail and its parkin[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Pileated Woodpeckers
Smoky Mountain Pileated Woodpeckers...
Smoky mountain pileated woodpeckers bring color and music to the mountains! Smoky Mountain Pileated Woodpeckers, America’s largest woodpecke[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Full Wolf Moon
Smoky Mountain Full Wolf Moon...
Smoky Mountain full wolf moon is on the rise! Smoky Mountain Full Wolf Moon. Full Wolf Moon to rise on January 28, 2021. Mother Nature is g[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Ice Curls
Smoky Mountain Ice Curls...
Smoky Mountain ice curls, whorls, tufts, feathers and mounds—all forms that natural ice can take on the ground under the right conditions. In a[Read More >>]
GSMNP Greenbrier Ranger District Road Closure
GSMNP Greenbrier Ranger District Road Closure...
Smoky Mountain road closure.. Greenbrier Road Sections Temporarily Closed for Bridge Replacement.  Ramsey Cascades Trail, Porter[Read More >>]
No thumbnail available
New Year Black-eyed Peas And Greens Recipe...
New Year Black-eyed Peas And Greens Recipe. What is behind the Southern tradition of eating black-eyed peas and collard greens on New Years[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Long Cold Full Moon
Smoky Mountain Long Cold Full Moon...
Smoky Mountain Long Cold full moon is on the rise! Smoky Mountain Long Cold Full Moon is on the rise! The final full moon for 2020 will appe[Read More >>]
No thumbnail available
Smoky Mountain Hemlock Trees...
Smoky Mountain Hemlock Trees are receiving a lifeline. Horticulturists hope a new hybrid hemlock will prove resistant to the hemlock woo[Read More >>]