Day Eleven: Salisbury to Oak Ridge
An early - but not too early start - start and we headed for the Great Smoky Mountains. After taking US 70 up to I-40 (saved a lot of time) we then got off the interstate and took US 441
An odd combination! Fuel yourself and fix your tires at the same time.
Our first real sight of the mountains
The Batcave? Batman's moved?
We lunched at a Huddle House here - hadn't eaten in one of them in years. Very nice.
O my country...
US 441 goes right through the park, over the mountains. It's a great drive, though often closed in the winter.
The Cherokee reservation is on the Carolina side of the mountains
There were painted bears everywhere - here are three I got pictures of: an eagle; Sequoyah with his cap, pipe, and syllabary; and I really don't know what.
Kudzu doing what kudzu does
The park entrance on the Carolina side - some strange kids
Rain clouds over the mountains - "maybe it's raining in Tennessee" I said. Hah.
Before we even got to Newfound Gap, the rain started - so torrential we had to stop in one of the pull-outs by the Oconoluftee and wait for about ten minutes before we could see the road! Summer storms in a temperate rain forest
Smoke on the mountains - why they got their name
Newfound Gap, where the early settlers crossed from the Carolinas and Virginia
After the storm, some clouds over the mountains
The Appalachian Trail - it starts in Georgia, though
Gatlinburg, at the Sugarlands entrance, a bustling tourist destination much like Cherokee, only without the Cherokee
Back into the park briefly on the way to Pigeon Forge
Pigeon Forge is now much more than the pottery .... much, much more
And we drove into another convection storm - summer storms, we called 'em when I was a kid.