National Park investigating vandalism in Great Smoky Mountains

(Great Smoky Mountains National Park)

GATLINBURG (WATE) – The National Park Service is investigating vandalism in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Over the weekend, the park said photos were taken along the Gatlinburg Trail that shows a man carving bark off of a tree. The park says the man has not been identified.

They are asking anyone with information on the man in the photos to call their tip line at (865) 436-1580. Rangers say vandalism holds a maximum penalty of a $5,000 fine and/or 6 months in jail.

Bark protects and nourishes a tree by keeping disease and insects out while holding in moisture and nutrients. The park says removing bark from a healthy tree always endangers the tree.

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