The Great Smokey Mountains National Park – Gatlinburg, TN

The blue ridge mountains – a sight one should see once in their lives.

There is something about the rolling Appalachain mountain range, the blue ridges, stretching into the distance for miles and miles on end, that is quite moving.

Desolate, beautiful, timeless, yet fragile – these mountain ranges were once civilized, in places, and still, less than a century later, they are forested again in regions where farmhouses once stood.

That is not exactly what you would think looking at out at the ridges now, for here, it looks as though time stood still and the trees forgot their own names, or, we forgot the meaning of natural beauty.

As for trails, there is a beautiful short trail nearby the Sugarlands Visitor Center that is paved, only 0.5, however it is very beautiful, and not to be missed if you have the time. Laurel Springs, a short 2.0 mile round trip hike from the road, is also very popular and worthwhile, because of the beautiful falls at the end of the journey before the turn-around. Anywhere is worth going, as long as you remember to return on the journey home.

Don’t forget to check out the Appalachian Trail. It has beautiful vistas in rugged places, although the scenic drives to Cades Cove or up to see the mountains from Newfound Gap and Clingman’s Dome are worth it, too. Of course, a drive through Gatlinburg and over to the Fontana Dam will yield some pretty, if packed, sights, if you go! The mosquitos and bugs are out in the summer months, so be prepared.

Time for the photos! As always, all opinions are my own.

Clingman’s Dome
A spider web hangs through the sunlit trees on a quiet walkway.