A Trip to Gatlinburg
Becky and I took a trip to Gatlinburg over the last few days. We have a sort of trial timeshare with Diamond Resorts, and we decided to take advantage of it for a few days. We plan to go again in late January to finish out our trial.
We had a good time while we were there. We got to relax some, and were able to do a few fun things, too. Of course, anyone that has been in or around Gatlinburg knows that the scenic views in the area can be breathtaking. This particular photo was taken at Newfound Gap in the Smokies.
While we were there, we spent about a day and a half in Dollywood. I don’t know if they do this all year, but we found that if you go in after 3pm on one day, you can get in the next day for free. So we took advantage of that. We enjoyed a couple of bluegrass bands, saw the Kingdom Heirs (We found that their piano player, Andy Stringfield, lives about a 20 minute drive from where we live), got sick on a couple of roller-coasters and shopped around a bit.
After Dollywood, we spent some time in the Great Smoky Mountains. We drove up to Clingman’s Dome, took the .5 mile hike up to the top and enjoyed the view. Don’t let that .5 mile fool you though – it’s steep, and pretty challenging. Neither Becky or I are in the best shape, but we’re not in terrible shape either. We had to take a few breaks on the way to the top. Once we got there, the view was awesome, but the wind was chilling. We enjoyed the view for a while, took some photos and made our way back down. We spoke to a Marine, a Vietnam Vet, who had some interesting stories to tell. We enjoyed talking to him for a little while, then had to move on. On the way back down towards Gatlinburg, we stopped at Newfound Gap. We took a few more photos, and learned a few things about the area that I’m sure most of you already know about. There is a monument there where President FDR dedicated it and the National Park. The Tennessee/North Carolina state line also runs right through the area where that monument was built.
That evening, we went to the Dixie Stampede. This makes about the 3rd time we’ve gone, I believe. It is expensive, but it’s always a fun show to watch, and the food is always very, very good. I finally saw a mess-up for the first time in the show. The girl that rides standing up on two horses fell off when she was trying to get them to bow at the end of her act. She wasn’t hurt at all – she just had to jump off before she completely lost her balance. Again, though, the show was a lot of fun as always.
We packed up and headed home Wednesday morning. We had a lot of fun, but it’s always good to get back home.
If you’d like to see, here are a few more photos from the trip.