Well, this is the last post of our vacation. I'm so glad you came along on this "little" tour. On our last day we decided to have an easy day of serene walks and nature hikes and taking pictures. We started out in the morning at Grotto Falls. It was a 1 1/5 mile hike up the mountainside. We started in the crisp dry leaves, found many small streams along the way,and by the time we made it to the falls, we ended up in the slushy snow. The beginning of the trail head was typical forest. Large rocks, huge trees, fallen mossy logs. As we ascended the mountain, it got colder, muddier, and we started to see snow. By the time we got to the falls, there was quite a bit of snow and you had to climb boulders and roots on a very narrow path. It was well worth it, though, and people of all walks of life were visiting that day.
(Remember, you can click the first picture and be taken to a gallery for full size photos that you can scroll through with your arrow buttons. My pics should be bigger, and I'm figuring out why Blogger will only let me do the first two. Bear with me, we'll get it :)
Large boulders at the entrance of the trail head. Look at the long veins of quartz running through this one. These were all over the mountains. So beautiful.
I fell in love with these mossy logs, stumps and rocks. This is a mere few of the pictures I took.
This water fall was accessible from the back. I took so many photos on that day. Where I'm standing for this photo, is the actual trail. Narrow and very snowy. Everyone was courteous and took turns in this great spot to take their pictures.
Down the road from the trail head to the falls, there was another homestead. These little houses were along the roads in certain areas and just there for you to visit and explore as you wish.
After we stopped by the homestead, we decided to take a hike up the Trillium Gap Trail. Just inside the trail head we came upon this little graveyard. It had this lovely mossy stone wall around it, just a very interesting find.
Well, we walked and walked. It really was a pretty hike, but eventually we realized we were really getting far in. The trail was 2.7 miles in and 2.7 miles back. We had had a plan for nice, slow picturesque nature walks, and didn't want to spend all day on this one hike. Boy, we really moved double-time back out of that trail. It was very
strenuous challenging and adventurous.
Once we were back out, almost two hours later, we stopped and took some pictures on the Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail.
This bridge was right close by. It's an actual fishing stream, and we saw two young boys gearing up to do just that.
The Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail is a long one-way loop in to many trail heads, including Grotto Falls. It is designed for you to enjoy a nature trail from your car, with pull-overs for exploring. And, that we did. From the car through the trees I saw a large cascade (almost waterfall). We found a pull-over close by and noticed that their was a trail going way down to these massive rocks with cascades and streams. So, of course, down we went. It was really beautiful.
This is just some of what we saw while we were down there.
Later that evening, once we got closer to the Gatlinburg Welcome Center, we found this very cool bridge and, of course, I needed a picture of it.
There were quite a few more lovely walks we took just up until dark. I will post everything to Smugmug (a photo-keeping site) very soon, now that I've finished this series. Thank you so much for sharing in our adventures to Tennessee. We truly loved it, and I hope you enjoyed these posts as much as I did remembering our trip while posting them.
At the time I'm writing this, Thanksgiving is quickly approaching, next week, in fact. I'll have a post about that, and something for my other blog confessions of a thinkaholic about Giving Thanks and having Gratitude.
I truly appreciate everyone who is reading. and wish you a fantastic, abundant ThanksGiving and hope you will be able to share it with your family, friends, and loved ones.
Have a great day!