EarthView–Beauty of Earth Science Revealed Within Great Smoky Mountains

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Four Seasons, Four Beautiful Views of Great Smoky Mountains National Park

EarthViews is a continuing series in which we share a USGS Image of the Week featuring the USGS/NASA Landsat program. From the artistry of Earth imagery to natural and human-caused land change over time, check back every Friday to finish your week with a visual flourish!

Satellite Image of Great Smoky Mountains National Park
A Spring view of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, taken by Landsat 8 on April 20, 2014.

The EarthView: Beauty of Earth Science Revealed Within Great Smoky Mountains

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Satellite Image of Great Smoky Mountains National Park
A summer view of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, taken by Landsat 8 on September 14, 2015.

Earth Science reminds us that the study of Earth and its biological processes can occur anywhere—whether we realize it or not. An easy way to appreciate science is illustrated in these images vividly portraying the life cycle of vegetation and displaying seasonal change at an area within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park along the Tennessee—North Carolina border.

Satellite Image of Great Smoky Mountains National Park
A Fall view of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, taken by Landsat 8 on October 26, 2013.

Earth's constant biological changing resonates in a revolving gallery of seasonal brushstrokes across the park's landscape. The vibrant green of forest life explodes as trees still dormant in April awaken and reach full bloom by the time summer stretches into September in these false-color images from Landsat 8's Operational Land Imager.

Satellite Image of Great Smoky Mountains National Park
A winter view of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, taken by Landsat 8 on December 19, 2015. 

By late October, senescence has begun—trees brushed in autumn colors start to shed their leaves. While the dark green of coniferous forests remains constant, as it does all year, the start of winter in December ushers back the pink hues of nature in slumber, surrounded by leafless, dormant deciduous trees.

Hungry for some science, but you don’t have time for a full-course research plate? Then check out USGS Science Snippets, our snack-sized science series that focuses on the fun, weird, and fascinating stories of USGS science.