Tennessee Vacation: Newfound Gap Road

Day two in the Smokies was the Newfound Gap Road.  This 33 mile drive goes through the park from Gatlinburg, TN to Cherokee, NC. The views along this road are amazing. The whole drive is mountain views and there are lots of scenic overlooks to pull over and get photos. The day was cloudy and hazy, so our views weren’t as far as what they might have been, but they were still spectacular.

At approximately 14 miles into the drive, you get to the Newfound Gap and the scenic overlooks in that area. The Rockefeller Memorial is here as well as the Tennesssee-North Carolina State Line. It is also here where the Appalachian Trail crossed our way and we hiked on the famous trail for a bit. Shortly after leaving here, we turned off on the road to Clingman’s Dome. This is the highest point in Tennessee, and on a clear day we are told you can see 7 states. As you can see, our view was a bit more limited from the top of the observation tower.

At the North Carolina end of the road is the Mountain Farm museum. This outdoor museum contains several pioneer buildings that have been moved here to preserve them and allow visitors to experience them. We were told that as sunset approaches, there area is taken over by elk, but we were too early for that and only saw one or two.

Project 365, Days 210-220

 

Day 210: Vacation finally started. Our first night was spent in Kentucky, at Moutardier Campground, just north of Mammoth Cave. Our campsite was right on Nolin Lake.

Day 211: Our first official site-seeing stop on this vacation was Mammoth Cave National Park. We did the Frozen Niagara Tour and really enjoyed the interesting formations in the cave.

Day 212: Nashville was our destination today. We went to Cheekwood Botanical gardens and then to downtown Nashville. I had to get a photo of the “Batman” building.

Day 213: Today brought us to Stones River National Battlefield, a memorial from the Civil War.

Day 214: We drove from Nashville to the Smoky Mountains today. On the way, we stopped at one of the many state parks, Cummins Falls State Park, and hiked to the waterfall.

Day 215: Not the most scenic photo from today, but it’s a great reminder of one of the highlights. We were doing the Cades Cove drive today and stopped at one of the historic buildings along the way, the Primitive Baptist Church. We expected a quick stop, a photo or two and then drive on. We were blessed instead with a service. Old fashioned hymns being sung, followed by a short message. We loved it.

Day 216: Day 2 in the Smokies was the Newfound Gap Road. So many gorgeous mountain views all day long. I could have soaked in the views for hours.

Day 217: Last day in the Smokies and we went on the Roaring Forks motor trail. One of the things I was looking forward to on this drive was a waterfall called Place of a Thousand Drips, for no other reason than I liked the name. It turned out to be a really nice little waterfall.

Day 218: Time to start heading for home. We stopped in Kentucky, at Cumberland Falls State Park. I love waterfalls.

Day 219: We spent most of the day driving today. One quick stop at Fair Oaks Farms, but we didn’t pay to do any of the “adventures”. Everything was farm themed, including this milk bottle rock climbing wall.

Day 220: This sweet little girl was so happy to have me home again. She hasn’t left my side at all.