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We started the day off with an amazingly mediocre breakfast at some restaurant on the outskirts of Pigeon Forge and then headed straight around Gatlinburg and into the mountains to Clingman’s Dome. On the way up, we stopped at a few choice hiking areas and, after climbing down a few cliffs, we were able to hang out on some giant boulders situated in the middle of frigid, rushing river water. Pretty exciting climb, I must say.
This was another river we stopped at. Less climbing, less excitement, but the young ones were able to participate. So there’s that.
This is the view from Clingman’s Dome looking into North Carolina. Now THAT was a climb! If you ever plan on going, remember to bring food and water because there is NOTHING on the way up.
This is the view from the trail up to the Dome. This was actually taken on the way down (I wasn’t in the mood to take photos on the way up).
And finally, this is the place that FDR dedicated the National Park System into existence or some such nonsense. And the people coming down the stairs were the recipients of my portrait taking abilities up at the top (using their camera, of course). After I took this photo of them heading down, I told them they were going to be on the site … so they can’t sue me … I hope.
Listening To: kids sing karaoke
12:00 am in Abstract, Architectural, Art, Astronomy, Black & White, Essay, Family, Gatlinburg, Journalism, Landscape, Nature, Nautical, Olympus eVolt E-330, People, Portrait, Sunset, Tennessee, Travel, Wildlife by William Tillis
The day started out with a traumatic stop alongside a scenic river (my brother didn’t notice that the curb was quite high and took the SUV for a flying leap over it. We came to rest nicely with no damage, though.
I’m sure we probably interrupted this woman’s reading with the loud scraping noise. Metal on concrete is not a pleasant sound.
After a mediocre visit to the arts & crafts area, we stopped and got an early dinner at Applebee’s (don’t ask me why we didn’t go to a local restaurant – we were hungry and not thinking straight, I guess)
Our next stop was the Ripley’s Believe It Or Not Aquarium, which is about 1,000 times better than the Florida Aquarium. Highly recommended. I could watch these jellyfish all day.
Then we went and grabbed some fudge and ice cream along the strip downtown and I noticed this scene as the sun was setting. It almost doesn’t look like I was downtown.
Listening To: muzak again