May 5, 2013

The Great Smoky Mountains, Tennessee

I think it was well over 10 years ago that I first saw photos and read an article about The Great Smoky Mountains.  Ever since then The Great Smokies have been on my "must go/see/experience" list.  We loved our visit there.  The beauty of it all was breathtaking and indescribable.  The history of some of the Appalachian people was captivating.  Now that I've been to The Great Smoky Mountains I want have to go back and spend at least a week there.  We were there 3 days and fortunately, it was just before tourist season started.  Some of the rangers talked about how crowded and busy the park gets during the summer and fall; so crowded that you can get stuck on the road for 3 hours in gridlock...inside the park.  In the beginning of May it was fairly empty ("comfortably crowded"), a tad chilly and rainy, but still so beautiful.  It was one of my favorite places on the trip and I do plan to return soon.

Ready for an overload of beautiful (and fun) photos?!

Cades Cove

We saw many deer up close.  We even, kinda, saw a black bear way far away, once.
A little hiking.

It rained a good amount while we were there, which was a bit of a bummer.  But that meant there were waterfalls everywhere...not such a bummer.

A process in photographing my children.
Cable Mill in Cades Cove.  I loved learning about the people who lived here and worked hard to survive in the mountain tops.

It wasn't quite spring in the mountain tops.
It was pretty wild watching the clouds blow around us.  You can see why these mountains are called The Great Smokies.
Learning about the animals that are native to The Great Smokies.
We loved the Junior Ranger programs at the National Parks.  Definitely a highlight.
Our hotel room in Gatlinburg, TN...we loved the fireplace, of course.
We had to pack up the car in the pouring rain.  Luckily we didn't have to go far.
I love my husband and his awesome adventurous spirit!

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