2017 North Carolina Mountains travel blog

Blue Ridge Parkway 1 - one of the many small farms in...

Blue Ridge Parkway 2 - Lake Logan on the way up to...

Blue Ridge Parkway 3 - one of the creeks along the way

Blue Ridge Parkway 4 - this is on the Parkway near the...

Blue Ridge Parkway 5 - as we pass the highest elevation on...

Blue Ridge Parkway 6 - as you can see Spring isn't here...

Blue Ridge Parkway 7 - mountain after mountain after mountain

Blue Ridge Parkway 8 - spring is here at the lower elevations...

Blue Ridge Parkway 9 - back at higher elevations again

Blue Ridge Parkway 10 - one of the many tunnels along the...

Blue Ridge Parkway 11 - coming into Cherokee, NC after exiting the...

Blue Ridge Parkway 12 - lots of places wanting your money

Blue Ridge Parkway 13 - and prayers

Blue Ridge Parkway 14 - what we believe is a large muskrat...

Cataloochee Valley Trip 1 - a couple of wild turkeys coming through...

Cataloochee Valley Trip 2 - the only two elk we saw

Cataloochee Valley Trip 3 - they all have radio trackers around their...

Cataloochee Valley Trip 4 - they were so far away and the...

Cataloochee Valley Trip 5

Cataloochee Valley Trip 6 - one of the turkey toms showing off...

Cataloochee Valley Trip 7 - both cows appear to be heavy with...

Cataloochee Valley Trip 8 - the elk and the turkeys appear to...


Wow! Almost three weeks have already passed - tempus fugit! We have been busy though we haven't really done much to tell you about. A week or so ago we made a trip up to the Blue Ridge Parkway and covered about 50 miles of it from a little north of Waynesville to its exit at the south end near Cherokee. It was still too early in the year to see a lot. All of the hardwoods at altitude were still bare and the many, many rhododendrons we not blooming yet - we will try again in June.

Last week we made the trip -about 45 minutes from the campground, up to the Cataloochee Valley, just inside the Great Smoky Mountains NP, where they have reintroduced an elk herd into the park. It has been thriving and we were fortunate to see two of the cows but it was very late with low light and substandard pictures. There was also a small flock of turkeys in the meadow to watch as we waited for the elks to make their late appearance. It was worth it but after all of our other elk watching, it was a little anticlimactic and we probably will not make the 15 mph gravel mountain trek again.

I guess most importantly, we have decided to stay the whole four months we had planned in this area at our current park instead of moving about six miles away to another park in Maggie Valley. We had only planned to stay at Trails End RV Park for May and June but we really like the park so decided to stay May through August and then go on up to Boone for September and October. We have a good site with excellent power, water, Verizon and satellite; it's very quiet; and the couple that run the park are extremely nice and do a great job of making the park special for the tenants. We have even spent the last few days helping them get flowers planted in the many, many pots they have around the park. Many of the residents of the park gather every Thursday night for a meal at a local restaurant so we have started enjoying that fellowship as well.

We will post more as experiences and time dictate - most likely two or three weeks again.

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