Laissez les Bons Temps Rouler - Winter 2011 travel blog

Norris Dam

another view

I was psyched to be at home and attend Book Club, a group I see so seldom that I am always amazed that they remember me at all. I've read the book and have lots to say about it, but when we watched the weather forecast last night, it was clear that it made no sense to move on today. We've dodged tornados in Louisiana and Mississippi, and more recently a huge onslaught which tore through North Carolina this weekend. If you live in a stick house and a big storm comes your way, you just have to run down to the basement if you are lucky enough to have one or cross your fingers. But it makes no sense to drive your home into high winds and hail, so we decided to hunker down here where it was a sunny summer day rather than to move on.

This area has pretty rolling hills, but is pretty nowhere. The reporter on last night's TV news was levitating with excitement because water was released over Norris Dam, something that rarely happens and was caused by the excess rain this winter. Since Norris Dam is part of a state park a few miles up the road, we decided to head there and see this momentous event for ourselves.

Norris Dam was the first of many dams built by the Tennessee Valley Authority in the 1930's, to harness the Tennessee River and some of its tributaries and bring electricity to an area that was definitely behind the times. The dams have controlled a river which flooded regularly and release water to maintain a steady level for boating. Miles of shoreline provide recreation for fishermen and hikers. We walked a path along the river bank and spent some time admiring the sight and sound of zillions of gallons of water shooting over the dam. While it was not the most amazing thing we have ever seen, it was a nice way to spend the day.

Onward tomorrow?

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