Animals of Cades Cove
Bear near John Oliver cabin
Some years ago, we made our first trip to Cades Cove. We have made many trips since, and have seen the valley in every season. Cades Cove is the most visited site in the Smoky Mountains National Park. You can tell by the number of cars on the one-way lane in the middle of the day. Even so, it’s well worth visiting.
Of course, everyone wants to see the bears. One time we saw a bear even before we got to the cove. Several cars were pulled off the two-lane road that leads to the valley. In the Smokies, that is a sure sign an animal has been sighted and being curious, my husband pulled off, too.
There was a man walking down into a ravine with his camera at ready. We soon saw why. At the bottom of the slope a fully-grown black bear was foraging for food. Several of the spectators were trying to warn the photographer back. Suddenly, the bear charged and the tourist made a mad dash for a nearby tree. It was probably the fastest he had ever climbed! Still, it wasn’t a big tree and Mister Bear knew how to give it a good shake. My husband, Dan, and the other bystanders started shouting and waving hats and anything else they had. The bear soon had enough and dashed up the other slope and into the woods.
The best encounter we ever had with a bear in the park was on a drizzly Thanksgiving Day after the kids had grown up. Dan and I did the driving tour and stopped to walk the trail to the John Oliver cabin. After starting up the path, we noticed a large bear meandering up ahead of us. We slowed and kept our distance. He had no fear of us puny people. The bear finally ducked into the woods somewhere near the Oliver cabin and we finished our hike.
Our daughter loved the deer and at times they would walk over to the fence and check her out as she offered them choice grasses she had pulled. The deer also have little fear in the cove. We learned quickly that you see more deer and other animals in the early part of the day and near sunset.
Lots of times we’d take the shortcut roads, Hyatt or Sparks Lane, which cut across the valley. There we would see deer grazing in the shade of the trees near the streams. Sometimes we’d see pretty good-sized concentrations of deer and other times we’d see only a few.
Other creatures we observed were woodchucks, raccoons (that’s another story!), and squirrels. We also heard coyotes, but didn’t see any. Plenty of birds pass through or reside in the cove: turkeys, hawks, buzzards, eagles, crows, and various songbirds.
Sadly, we never saw elk. They were entirely gone from the cove in 2001 due to over-hunting in the past, but they were introduced later by TWRS and have been sighted in recent years, especially in the Cataloochee Valley. We did hear their bugling once on a later trip. Another animal we never saw was the red wolf. This is an animal that used to roam in the area, but they were hunted and trapped to near extinction. Like most wolves, they are controversial. It is believed by some scientists that the red wolf is a cross between coyotes and wolves that happened in the distant past. When they were re-introduced in the cove in the late 90s that became one problem to their survival in the wild. Coyotes had returned to the area and were again cross-breeding. The few wild wolves couldn’t compete and finally the remaining individuals were re-captured and taken to special habitats. You have to go to the Knoxville Zoo to see red wolves. Despite that, Cades Cove is an excellent place to take your family for the day. During the warmer months of the year, the loop is open from sunrise for a couple of hours to bike or foot traffic only.
Susan Kite, a member of Author’s Guild of Tennessee, is the author of five books for young adults; historical fiction, science fiction, and fantasy. Check out her site at http://www.bookscape.net/author/main.htm where you can find general and ordering information.
The City of Plainview hosted a ribbon cutting to mark the Grand Opening of the Dollar General Store at 1900 Tazewell Pike. Mayor Gary Chandler welcomed the crowd and thanked all who made this day possible. Mayor Chandler stated that Plainview is a growing community of caring individuals and that the city will continue to strive to “meet the needs of our citizens”.
Summer is in full swing at the Union County Farmers Market. The market is located in Wilson Park and open on Saturdays from 10am – 1pm. Our new Saturday hours allow our farmers to harvest early on Saturday morning bringing you the freshest possible produce. We hope the later hours will also encourage you to take advantage of the food trucks that are joining us! Enjoy a snack, breakfast or lunch.
A few days ago I had just risen from my chair to go to the great room for a cup of coffee. I really stood up and took notice, stopping dead in my tracks. There came a sudden crack of lightning with a deafening roar of thunder. All at the same time. That was not only close, it had to be right on top of us. My immediate worry was if there was any damage.
Being old has its disadvantages, but something I’m glad it allowed me to witness (at age 15) was the first moon landing and walk that occurred 50 years ago this month. It was one of those moments you remember exactly. In my case it was at my boyhood home in Middlesboro, Kentucky at 10:30 on a Sunday night. Me and my dad (mom was out of town) sat there watching a small black and white television totally mesmerized as these two guys walking around on another world. I remember lots of goosebumps and feeling so happy (I was a bona fide science geek by then).
I have always liked red table grapes, but have previously looked in vain for a way to cook them. A few years ago our church group took a trip up to Cumberland Falls in Kentucky. While there, we had lunch at their tearoom. Grape Salad was on the menu. It was delicious and new to all of us. We asked for the recipe. The one they gave us didn't turn out at all like the tasty salad we had there. Don't you hate that? When someone gives you a recipe and its not quite like their dish.
Enthusiasts from around the world traveled to spectate the picturesque landscapes of unique blooms at the Twentieth Annual Oakes Daylily Bloom Festival on Friday and Saturday June 28 and 29. The weather was usual for East Tennessee’s late June days, very hot and muggy, but the temperatures did not slow down the masses of guests attending.
On June 29, Main Street exploded with color. Union County Platinum Athletics hosted a Paint Party to youths and families of the community. The children, as well as the children at heart, excessively enjoyed a paint slip-n-slide, shaving cream twister, canvas painting with squirt bottles, water balloon fight, and an over the top paint war. The paint war is exactly that, a war, everyone throws powder paint at everyone who came for a fun mess of a time, creating a beautiful, colorful rainbow mess.
At the Union County Historical Society Meeting on Sunday, July 21, at 2:30 at the UC Museum, Bill Landry of Heartland Series fame will share stories from his new book, WHEN the WEST was TENNESSEE. Lisa Oakley will relate information on the East Tennessee History Center's new exhibit, “Mountain Dew”.
A class for Tennessee's divorcing parents. Held in Union County on the last Monday each month. Preregistration required at 865-992-8038 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Moore about the program at https://extension.tennessee.edu/Union/Pages/FCS-Co-Parenting.aspx
Enjoy a day of family-friendly fun! Children can compete in fun contests like "corniest joke," "fastest corn eater," and "fastest corn shucking." There will be door prizes and live music. Local vendors may sell corn products at no cost to them. In addition to corn-related shopping, local produce and craft vendors will be at the farmers market. There will be games, history exhibits, and fun demonstrations for everyone. We'll see you there!
This will be a simple self serve buffet. It will include Buttered Grits (cheese optional), Fresh- Baked Banana Muffins, Toast with homemade Strawberry and Fig Preserves, Fresh Fruit Salad, and Quiche Florentine. We will serve Orange Juice, Milk, Tea, and Coffee to drink.
Jerry Lynn Hubbs, Jr.-age 46 of Knoxville passed away Thursday, July 11, 2019 at his home following a brief battle with cancer. He was a member of Fairview Baptist Church, Luttrell. Preceded in death by father, Jerry Lynn Hubbs, Sr.; mother, Joyce Bailey Cline; grandparents, Frank and Mary Bailey; granddaughter, Riley Hubbs.
Reverend Luther Vineyard Cox – age 93 of Maynardville, went home to be with the Lord on Wednesday, July 10, 2019 peacefully at home with his family by his side. He was a lifelong member and former pastor of Cedar Grove Missionary Baptist Church. Luther was retired from Dempster Brothers and was a United States Army Veteran serving in World II.
Lowell Edward George, Sr., age 81 of Knoxville went home to be with the Lord on Friday, July 5, 2019 at 11:05 am with his family surrounding him. He was a longtime member of Central Baptist Church, Fountain City and lifelong resident of Knoxville. He was greatly loved by his family and all who knew him and was a father figure to many. Lowell is preceded in death by mother and father Eva and Tom Newberry.
Samuel “Sam” E. Hampton, age 70, formerly of Beckley, WV, passed away peacefully at home in Knoxville, TN on Thursday, July 4, 2019. He loved football and was an avid fan of the Cleveland Browns. He was also a lover of animals.
Survived by his wife of 46 years, Sharron Hampton and daughter Jennifer and her husband John Morris.
A service will be held at 1:30 p.m. Sunday, July 7, 2019 at Mynatt Funeral Home Fountain City Chapel with Minister Brad Hood officiating.
Clarence Henegar, age 85, lifelong resident of Knoxville, went to be with the Lord on July 3, 2019. He was a member of Salem Baptist Church for 50 years, and served as a deacon for 40 years. He was a graduate of Central High School, and went on to graduate from Cooper Institute. He retired from the U.S. Postal Service after 32 years of service. In his younger years he enjoyed bowling, and was an avid golfer. He was very well known in the dancing community. As a young man he enjoyed square dancing, and in later years, ballroom and country dancing.
Donald L. Fowler, age 80, of Knoxville passed away Tuesday, July 2, 2019. He enjoyed spending time with his family and eating out. He is preceded in death by wife of 26 years Carol Fowler, parents; Hugh & Hester Fowler, brothers; Albert, Billy, Glenn and James, and by dog Peanut. He is survived by son Keith Fowler, brother Wilbur Fowler of Springfield, Tennessee and many nieces and nephews. The family will receive friends from 2:00pm-4:00pm on Saturday, July 6, 2019 at Grove Heights Baptist Church (818 Frank Street Knoxville, TN). A service will follow at 4:00pm with Rev.
Lois Ann Lee – age 67 of Maynardville, went to be with the Lord on July 2, 2019.
She is preceded in death by her husband, Wayne Lee; parents, Clarence and Dorothy Effler; sister, Linda Sexton; brothers, Bobby and Charlie Effler. Lois is survived by her daughter, Sheila (Kenneth) Lawler; son, Bobby (Tammy) Tharp; several grandchildren and great grandchildren; sisters, Emma (Bill) Collins, Karen (Randy) Chamberlain and Gerri (Mark) Ford; brother, Sandy (Peggy) Effler; and a host of loving nieces and nephews and other family members.
Mickie D. Faulkner-age 43 of Corryton passed away Tuesday morning, July 2, 2019 at her home with her family by her side. She was a member of True Life Ministries Church. She was a loving and selfless person who loved to make others smile and be happy. She was preceded in death by father, George Lee Poindexter; mother, Anna B. Collins; sister, Lisa Poindexter.
Gene Autrey Ford – age 75 of Luttrell, passed away Thursday, June 27, 2019. He was a member of Piney Grove Baptist Church, Karns. Gene was a military veteran and a retired electrician, IBEW Local 760.