May 19, 2009


My entire family (parents, siblings, nieces) all got together for an extended weekend vacation in the Great Smoky Mountains to celebrate my parents anniversary. I think everyone had a great time and would enjoy going back. Here is a quick "day by day" of some of the things we seen and did.
Day 1:

(Below) A couple of images of our cabin

(Below) Val and I were standing on one of the decks when we saw a fairly large black bear run across the road in front of our cabin and into the woods, he eventually came out beside our cabin so I ran through the cabin to the front porch to wait for him to come around the corner and got a couple of shots of him. It was about 8:15 and overcast so the light was pretty bad, I had to shoot wide open with my ISO to its max so the images are pretty bad...but still a really cool experience seeing these animals in the wild.

Day 2:
Brittney, Val and I hiked to Grotto Falls during the day.

(Below) We came across some giant centepedes

(Below) Val and Brittney behind Grotto Falls.

(Below) After hiking we headed into Pigeon Forge for some ice cream at the Old Mill

(Below) Later that evening we went to the Dixie Stampede, I was skeptical if I would like the show but it was really good, Unfortunately photography was not permitted during the main show but here is a shot from the pre-show.

(Below) After the show we headed back to the cabin, Val and I were on the deck and joking about seeing the bear again and sure enough another bear came from the same area at almost the same time of night. The light was even worse, the bear was smaller and farther away than the one the night before so this is the image you get...

Day 3:

We got lots of rain and fog on day 3. We tried to drive up in the mountains but the fog was so dense you could hardly see. We did go to Ripley's Aquarium which was pretty interesting.

(Below) We were waiting to see if a bear would come by again but it didn't happen. This was our view from the second deck of the cabin, Val gets photo credit for this one.

Day 4:
Val and I hiked to Clingmans Dome before heading home. At 6,643 feet it is the highest mountain in the Great Smoky Mountains.

(Below) The observation tower

(Below) Some of the random streams we stopped at on the way back down the mountain.


jennifer said...

Looks like you all had a fabulous time - pix are awesome!!

jane augenstein said...

Wow, great pictures!!!