Though millions of people travel to view Tennessee’s forest leaves as they change from deep green to red, orange and gold, not all are able to fully enjoy the beauty because of colorblindness.
To aid those who have protanopia and protanomaly (more commonly known as red-green colorblindness or red-blind), the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development has installed viewfinders specially equipped with lenses that alleviate red-green color deficiencies.
The viewfinders have been installed at three of the most beautiful overlooks in East Tennessee: aerial tramway at Ober Gatlinburg, East Rim Overlook in the Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area near Oneida and at the westbound Interstate 26 scenic overlook near Erwin in Unicoi County.
Commissioner Kevin Triplett of the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development said in a prepared statement:
One of the main pillars we promote in Tennessee is our scenic beauty. The reds, oranges and yellows in the fall and the incredible colors in the spring are a staple of what comes to mind when people think about Tennessee or visit here. But to realize, through red-green deficiencies and other forms of colorblindness, there potentially are more than 13 million people in our country alone who cannot fully appreciate the beauty our state has to offer, we wanted to do something about that. We wanted to provide opportunities for more people to see what those of us who can may take for granted.
Although results may vary by individual, officials hope the colorblindless viewfinders will help showcase Tennessee’s beautiful fall splendor to some of the more than 13 million Americans who have protanopia and protanomaly, and who may have never before seen the full spectrum of fall colors before.
Learn more and find the locations on a map here.