Great Smoky Mountain National Park

The Journey to Clingman's Dome

My husband and son on the way back down. Pictures by the author.

Back in the mid-nineties, I had hip replacement surgery. I didn’t want it, but the horse I fell from about twenty or so years earlier gave me no say in the matter. It was a strange journey. About 1989, I went to see an orthopedic doctor at Ft. Sanders when my back was hurting. He ordered an MRI after saying he was pretty sure he knew what was wrong. I wish he had just told me.

Raccoon Solitaire

Raccoon, courtesy of Pixabay

When our family was younger, we loved visiting Cade’s Cove and took every opportunity to go there.

One summer we decided to go camping. The cove has a wonderful campground. Stream running nearby and a little store if you forgot something. Now mind you, we are not the camping type. Our budget was a little tight so we had no tent. We had blankets, sleeping bags, food and the assurance of the Knoxville weathermen that the night was going to be clear with absolutely no rain.

Great Smoky Mountain National Park; or preaching to the choir...

Rushing stream in the Smokies.

In my personal opinion, the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is one of the most fascinating places on Earth. I have been there more times than I can recall and learned many things each time I went. I learned about the rocks, the animals, about the different types of flowers and trees, and I learned about the people who once called this area home. I learned that after a hip replacement surgery, I could walk all the way up to the Mount LeConte lookout. I was tired, but I had done it! At times it was like a home away from home.