It seemed doubtful that we could top Day#1 of our Tennessee trip but we were determined to give it a whirl. Day#2 would consist of a driving tour through the Great Smoky Mountain National Park, hiking to a waterfall and a Lumberjack dinner show.
Driving to the Park, an inadvertent wrong turn onto the bypass became a fortunate accident as we were able to stop and take the picture above before turning around. A slight detour and we were back on our way.
Trying to describe the scenery of the Park is nearly impossible. Words like beautiful and breathtaking do it no justice. A majestic backdrop with mountains and streams, it wasn’t hard to channel my inner Henry David Thoreau.
We drove on through the awe-inspiring landscape until we saw a mass of people on a hill taking pictures. I stopped to ask a woman what they were all looking at and she told us that there was a momma bear and her two cubs!!! Megan and the kids hopped out while I tried to frantically parallel park on the narrow road.
We were all excited to see them but I thought Emma’s head would explode seeing bears in real life! Saying she loves bears would be like saying Heidi Montague likes plastic surgery. It in no way explains the depth of her passion for them. Inching ever closer to gain a better picture, I started to understand how people end up getting mauled by wild animals. One step after another, the momma bear and her two cubs seemed more like adorable, animated teddy bears just begging to be scooped up and hugged. I restrained myself and reminded Emma to do the same. Reluctantly, we left to continue on our tour.
A 1.5 mile hike to a waterfall was on our itinerary and as thunder rumbled in the distance, we knew it would have to be a purposeful march up the mountain instead of a leisurely stroll.
We managed to make it to the waterfall with just a few sprinkles and a minimal amount of threats that complaining children may or may not be harmed in the process.
Our Kodak moment had been captured, now it was a race to the bottom before the impeding doom befell us.
We made it over a mile of the way before the skies opened up on us.
Muddy and soggy, we climbed back into the van to finish our driving tour and get back to the cabin for a hot shower. Our dinner show awaited us…
The Lumber Jack show was funny and entertaining for both kids and grownups. Now, just one thing left to do to make it a perfect day…