The plan for today was to drive the 180 miles to Blountville in Tennessee where Rick’s sister-in-law Carolyn lives and where we’d stay for a couple of nights.
As you can see from the map below, our drive would take us straight through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park where we were hoping for opportunities to photograph the fine fall colors for which the Park is renowned.
The dates of the changing colors of the leaves vary according to the recent weather and the elevation, and also the geographical latitudes, and we found that the peak of the fall colors was still a week or so away. Nevertheless the mountain scenery was spectacular, enhanced by the beautiful blue skies, as you can see from some of the photos and videos we took:
And here are two videos to provide that “being there” experience:
Leaving the Great Smoky Mountains National Park behind, we motored northwards through Pigeon Forge without being tempted to visit Dolly Parton’s Dollywood theme park, nor even the ‘Titanic’ which both Rick and I are interested in. We were heading towards a reunion with Carolyn, Rick’s sister-in-law.
We arrived at Carolyn’s house at about 5 o’clock in good time for a relaxed evening together. That included driving the few miles to Bristol, the city which straddles the Tennessee/Virginia border, where the new mega-sized shopping mall had taken impressive shape since our visit last year when, apart from the huge Bass Pro Outdoor Sports Store, it was just an outsize building site.
Here’s a photo of Carolyn (left) with myself, Janice and Rick at the Bass Pro store last year.
We dined at the new Zaxby’s restaurant there on the new Mall site which, for a fast food outlet, we agreed is very good.
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