Our last few days were spent heading back north. We stopped in Tennessee at the Smoky Mountain Knife Works and hit a few antique shops. We also stopped at Tony Gore’s Smoky Mountain BBQ for some delicious but surely bad for you ribs and beans. That night, we stayed in a hotel in Pigeon Forge and wandered around town that evening checking out all the cars that had turned out for Shades of the Past. We didn’t know that our time in town would coincide with the annual car show, but it became more and more obvious that something was going on the closer we got to town.
This car we actually saw while in the Smoky Mountains, but it’s the only car picture I got. Matt took the rest on his phone. This man was nice enough to kind of stop when he saw me taking the picture.
The next day we were off again, this time through the Smoky Mountain National Park. We stopped in the information center just inside the Park to get maps and info on places we might want to see. The park is free to visit, but they ask for donations for the maps and travel guides. We gladly paid $5 for a packet that included trail maps, road maps, guides for the main scenic areas and other nature info.
One of the guides had scenic interests and trailheads marked by mile post, so we stopped to hike and take pictures whenever something good was coming up. We also got up close to a mama bear with 3 cubs who were turning over the ground beside the road, looking for things to eat.
Our main destination in the park was Clingman’s Dome, the highest point in the park. We drove to the parking lot and made the .5 mile climb to the top. They have an observation tower with a paved walkway to the top where we saw pictures of what we could have seen, had there been less fog.
The clouds did start to part as we made our way back down and the sun came out for the rest of our drive through the Smokies.