Well I’m back from my mini vacation to Gatlinburg. It was a very busy two days, complete with horseback riding, hiking and lots of eating
On Thursday, a group of us went hiking up Clingman’s Dome, which is the highest point in the Smokies at over 6000 feet. There’s a steep paved path that’s about a 1/2 mile from the parking lot up to the observation deck on top.
Sadly, it was an incredibly foggy day on top of the mountain so I didn’t really get to see the breathtaking overlook from the deck. However, the fog itself was eerily beautiful along with the trees (many of them dead from a fire some years ago). Here’s one of the pictures I took on the hike up to the top:
Along the trail to the top
As I took this picture (and a few others) I couldn’t help but think of my novel about Yuki-onna. Perhaps it was the eerie atmosphere. There were probably a hundred other people hiking to the top like we were but it seemed like we were the only ones as people passed us and disappeared into the fog.
Needless to say, that’s definitely one of those “inspiration” pictures that make me picture my novel–even though it’s summertime and set on the other side of the world
Hubby and I are off to Gatlinburg until Friday.
Yeah, it’s a short amount of time, but he’s only got so many vacation days; he’s saving the bulk of them for our trip to Disney World in September.
This vacation is one of those entire family deals; his parents, grandparents and a few aunts and uncles and cousins are already in Gatlinburg. Normally there’s a yearly or every other year vacation to Destin, Florida (which was last year) but they decided to change it up a bit. Fine with me–Destin was ok, but I’m not one for being around that many thousands of people on vacation. I also tend to like places that aren’t as built up with 15-story or more hotels lining the beach. I know Gatlinburg is probably going to be just as congested (without the beach front hotels obviously) but it’s a place I’ve never been, at least while I was old enough to remember. Plus it’s only a few days rather than a week
The best part is simply getting off work and getting out of town, even if only a few days.