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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Gatlinburg, Tennessee, United States

Oct 23, 2017 - Exploring Cades Cove and BEARS

Date: October 23, 2017 Tonight’s Location: Gatlinburg, Days Inn Mileage: End - 22097 Start - 21853 Total Miles for the day: 244 Weather: some rain, some clouds, some sunshine – just at the right time. Temperature: start 61º High 64º Wildlife count: Black Bear, White-tailed Deer, Wild Turkeys Year List: 346 Birds: After breakfast with family at Cracker Barrel, we headed east on I-40 with some fog and rain. The rain got ahead of us, which was wonderful, and by the time we got to the national park, the sun was shining through the clouds. ...

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Trip Journal


Eastern fun trip

Aug 24, 2017 - Third ride day

On our third ride day, we left out of Sapphire Valley and took the backroads towards Gatlinburg. Steve and I were on the lead bike as we rode through the misty countryside. On our way, we ended up behind a log truck for about a mile (that wasn't so fun) and also came upon a work crew that was stringing high wire. That was interesting to weave through them! We stopped in Sylva for a gas up and a potty break before heading into Cherokee and stopping for the required pictures at the entrance to the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. Then it...

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May 21, 2017 - Gatlinburg, TN

May 21, 2017 Very windy before going to bed last night which was nice as it cooled us down a bit. Rained most of the night with a lull when we got up. We had planned to drive to the Cades Cove and take the 11 mile one-way Cades Loop Road which is similar to the Roaring Fork Motor route we took yesterday. If not raining, we had hoped to take the hike to Abrams Falls. To get to the Cades Cove entrance it is a beautiful 1 ½ hour drive west from Gatlinburg along the Little River. Even in the rain it was delightful. A cove is a relatively flat...

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May 20, 2017 - Gatlinburg, TN

May 20, 2017 Beautiful sunny morning. We relaxed and didn’t leave camp until about 10:00. Gatlinburg was crowded as were all the trailhead parking spots. Need to start earlier, particularly on the weekend. Fortunately, we drove down Little River Road to the Elkmont campground where the ranger said we would find a very nice 5 mile hike, the Little River Trail. The area was formerly the Appalachian Club camp and the remains are still there. It was a lovely shaded walk along the Little River, a long slow walk up and long slow walk down! The...

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May 19, 2017 - Asheville, NC to Gatlinburg, TN

May 19, 2017 Woke up to water in the bathroom at 3:00am! (at least our shoes didn’t float!) Disconnected the city water and back to bed. Of course, I was up for the duration reading. We also realized that the best of the Asheville Beer Festival was 5/27 and we did not want to stay past 5/26. So, we reconfigured our trip. The issue is that it is Memorial Day weekend. We had hoped to stay at the Horse Farm in Lexington but no surprise there isn’t room. We did get the last spot in the Boone State Park about 25 miles south of Lexington which...

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Apr 22, 2017 - Ranger Programs in Great Smoky Mountains National Park

We went to the Sugarlands Visitor Center this morning for a ranger-led walk. The visitor center was a mad house! It is Junior Ranger Day and there were lots of activities going on. The crowds weren’t out on the trails though. We spent about an hour walking the half-mile trail through the woods to Cataract Falls with a park intern. She pointed out the different types of trees in the woods and their uses to the Cherokees and the early settlers. After we finished the walk with the ranger, we hiked the one-mile loop trail at Sugarlands to the...

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Trip Journal


Our 2017 Travels

Apr 21, 2017 - Elkmont Campground in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Tennessee

We left Cades Cove today and drove 25 miles to the Elkmont Campground. This is the first time we have been to this campground. Our campsite backs up to the Little River. It would be very pleasant if our neighbor didn’t run his generator for hours at a time. We have found that we only need to run ours if we need to run the microwave or air conditioning. Because we drive our motorhome every day, the batteries have stayed charged up. The solar panel helps, too. We run the inverter when we are driving and use it to charge up electronics. So...

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Trip Journal


Our 2017 Travels

Sep 20, 2016 - Last day in the Smokies

We drove through a lot of the park today, just enjoying the scenery and the beautiful weather. We got to the highest peak in the Smokies, Clingman's Dome, and walked to the observation tower. Although it's paved and only a half a mile, it is a tough walk because it is SO steep. The view from the top, however, is spectacular and the best part - it's all downhill to go back to your car! We thoroughly enjoyed spending time with our friend, Linda, who made us feel like family. She grew up in Gatlinburg, so when she took us on a tour, it was...

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Sep 19, 2016 - Cades Cove and Abram's Falls

This morning we headed out early to Cades Cove to see if we could spot any bears. Although we didn't see any, we did see a lot of wild turkeys and deer. Cherokees hunted in the cove, but there is no evidence there was ever a Cherokee village there. In 1821, the first non-native people settled there because it was rich and fertile and there were lots of animals to hunt and eat. Lots of the original structures, including some old churches and an operational grist mill, still stand. From the trailhead in Cades Cove, we hiked what is supposed...

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Sep 18, 2016 - Grotto Falls

We arrived at our friend's townhouse last evening. After a good night's sleep, she took us into Great Smoky Mountains National Park. We hiked the Trillium Gap Trail - 2.6 miles round trip. The trail takes you to a 25 foot waterfall where you can walk behind it. Very beautiful! That evening, we went to a party with some of Linda's neighbors. Southern hospitality is a real thing!

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Jun 21, 2016 - Sugarlands Riding Stables

Sami loves to ride horses, so every summer, wherever we go, we schedule a trail ride. Something really neat happened this year! We rode up behind a black bear walking along the riding trail. Not everyone got to see it, but Sami was 2nd in line, right behind the guide, so she got a pretty good look at it. The past two summers, Randy has been on a horse named Preacher (different horses in different stables), and they've been very large and fairly spirited. This years horse, Cocoa, was apparently, tired and not in a hurry to get anywhere....

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Jun 19, 2016 - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

We drove south through Gatlinburg, TN into The Great Smoky Mountains National Park which straddles the states of Tennessee and North Carolina. I was surprised to find out that this park ranks number one in the number of visitors each year. This park has over 10 million visitors each year. That is almost twice the number of the next most visited park in the US. We had been here before, but we did not get a chance to do much hiking. Our friends told us about Clingman's Dome. This is the highest point in the park at 6643 feet in elevation....

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Trip Journal


Where RV This Year?

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