Top Ten Ancient Forests of the United States

Congaree Swamp, South Carolina

Congaree Swamp National Monument preserves the largest intact tract of old-growth floodplain forest in North America. We're talking 11,000 acres. The area boasts approximately 90 tree species. The variety of trees equals half the number found in all of Europe. Loblolly pines as tall as 169 feet grow here in a rare association with hardwood swamps.

You'll find two and a half miles of trail here, some of it easy boardwalk. But the best way to see this flooded forest is to hop into a canoe. Fondle a cypress knee for me.

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