This past week, I took a trip with my family to the Great Smoky Mountains. It was a family trip and not any sort of research for an upcoming book. Although, there is much inspiration to be had in Tennessee. Such a beautiful place. But I thought it would be fun to talk about a few of the highlights of the trips. If you know me or have been following me for a while, then you know I love camping and hiking. We did a bit of hiking so I definitely want to talk about some trails. Oh, and if you want to hear a brief story about a paranormal experience I may have had, sign up for my monthly newsletter or Patreon page. Only places you will find that story!
First thing I'll talk about is our brief stay in Senoia, Georgia. We stopped and stayed over night to help break up the drive. And to visit one of our favorite small towns. It doesn't hurt that it was the backdrop for Woodbury in AMC's The Walking Dead. We've visited a few times but there's always something new and exciting to see. And since it's an active filming location still, there's new stuff popping up all the time. Fans of the show would recognize Alexandria which is right across the street. I'll share a few photos at the bottom of the post that you can sift through.
Of course, the real trip started when we got to Tennessee. You could see the Smoky Mountains from our cabin and the view was incredible. In fact, the whole cabin was incredible. I call it a cabin for lack of a better word, really. The first night, we looked up at the stars and I broke out the telescope to view Saturn and Jupiter. The night sky is so much darker up there than Florida so it was amazing.
Let's move on to some trails. The first trail we hiked led to a place called Cataract Falls. Not sure the story behind this naming but I bet it's a funny one. The waterfall was a cool sight to see and we were able to climb a few rocks to get a close look. We also hiked a place in North Carolina called Clingman's Dome which is the highest point in the Smokies. A trail called Gatlinburg Trail. And one of my favorites, Metcalf Bottoms Trail.
Metcalf Bottoms Trail wasn't a long hike. About 1.5 miles round trip. However, it was up a mountain and back down. So it was uphill both ways. That will be funny in a second. At the end of the trail is an old wooden school house and cemetery. The school house was built in 1881. We explored a bit and realized you were allowed inside. Which was great because it started to rain so we took shelter until it stopped. While waiting, we learned that kids used to hike the very trail we had used to get to and from school. Which means, there really are people who can say they used to walk to school uphill, both ways.
If you've ever been to Gatlinburg, you know it's a tourist city with lots of giftshops and touristy things to do. We didn't spend the majority of our time here but we spent a good amount there. It helps that my wife and I have been to Gatlinburg a couple of times already. One thing that was really fun was taking a ski lift up the mountain to a little mountaintop park. We had some drinks and enjoyed the amazing views before heading back down.
There was so much we did on this trip that I couldn't possibly sit here and talk about it all without boring you to tears. Everything from enjoying a camp fire to laying out on the ground to watch a meteor shower. It was a fun trip and a great way to get away from everything that's going on right now. I highly recommend taking a trip up there if you haven't already! And who knows, maybe there will be a book based in the Smokies coming soon!
To cover up his search history, Evan Bond is a thriller/suspense author. As an outdoor enthusiast and horror lover, Evan Bond enjoys writing stories where the two come together. He lives in Florida with his wife and two sons.