Big Cypress Tree State Park
At one time, this Tennesse state park was home to the largest bald cypress tree in the world. With a diameter of 13 feet and a circumference of nearly 40 feet, this tree was also the largest tree of any species east of the mighty Mississippi. In 1976, the tree was struck and killed by lightning. She was a mere 1,350 years old. The trail that used to lead to her hallowed trunk has long since been overtaken by the wilderness. If you look hard, however, you can still find old sign posts that serve as a reminder that this park was once alive with visitors from all over the southeast.
“If my decomposing carcass helps nourish the roots of a juniper tree or the wings of a vulture—that is immortality enough for me. And as much as anyone deserves.” ― Edward Abbey, Desert Solitaire