Trip Report June 13-16,2010
This was my 2nd trip to the Gatlinburg area in the past month and a half(I went my husband back in April).I invited a friend to go with me.It was
her first trip to the area.We arrived in Gatlinburg around 2:00pm drove around some then headed over to our hotel in Cherokee,NC. We stayed
at " The Inn of The Seven Clan's".It was a very nice hotel right down the street from the casino.We checked in our room(rm103).It had 2 queen sized
beds and was very clean and nice.We then drove back over the mountains to Gatlinburg.We ate dinner at No Way Jose's and the food and service
were very good.It was gettign close to 7:00pm so we made our way over to Sugarland Vistors Center to catch the trolley to Elkmont to see the lighting
bug's.The Rangers were not letting noone else in so he said to go to Metcalf Bottoms to view the firelies.We drove to the old school house and
there were tons of lighting bugs there,They were all in sync.And it was just beautiful seeing them.Ive never been to The Smokies during the lighting
bugs mating season before.It was getting late so we decided to leave and head back to Cherokee,during the drive back we saw thousands more
lighting bugs on the way back.We stopped several times to watch them.It was so exciting.As we were driving thru the mountains we came around
a corner and there was a helicopter there.I guess there had to be a bad wreck in the mountains.I don't know how they landed it in such a tight spot.
I hope noone got hurt too bad,As we contuined on there was a wrecker truck towing a small truck on it.We had to follow it all the way to Cherokee.
We got up and got ready and ate breakfast at the hotel.They had homemade waffles and alot of other breakfast items,all of it was very good.We
drove back over the mountain and made our way to Cades Cove.It was very hot but a beatuiful day.On the way we saw a momma black bear with 2 cub's
on the side of the road we stopped and took some great pictures and video.This was my friends first time ever seeing the bears and she just in
shock with a huge smile on her face.The cubs ran up and down the trees and played with each other.We then entered Cades Cove we saw several
Deer while we were there and saw another black bear in the woods sleeping next to a tree.We also saw a few wild Turkeys too.We stopped at the
camp store and got some snacks to eat.Cades Cove wasnt very busy at all.I was rather surprised at that.We then went over to Coffee & Company
and I bought 5lbs of Southern Pecan coffee which is my favorite .We got to see Jeanette, the owner's grand daughter,She was beautiful.We then
went to Pigeon Forge to do some shopping for a few hours.We went back to Gatlinburg walked around and then ate at Best Italian Restaurant.
We sat out on the patio and it was so nice and relaxing with the stream running beside it.The food and service was excellent as always.I bought a
water bottle and it came with a free tote bag with there logo on it.Then we shopped some more and drove back over to The Chimney's Picnic area and then to Cherokee.
We then got ready to go over to Harrah's Casino for a few hours.We both did very well at the casino and they even gave us 2 free buffets at Fresh Markey Square.
I guess the luck was with us.I wasnt sure if I would win since the last time I was there I hit a progessive slot machine plus hit another one too.
But it did pay out again.More money to spend shopping.
We got up and got ready drove back over to Gatlinburg and had breakfast at the famous "Pancake Pantry".It's a must for me.I have to eat breakfast there everytime
I come to the area.If you haven't tryed it I suggest you do very good pancakes.We walked up and down the strip and shopped some more.We both bought alot of cute things.
We loved All Sauced Up spent alot of money there.I bought several bottles of Smoky Mountain Smoker's Barbecue sauce and got a couple of jars of
Robert Rothschild Artichoke Spinach Dip and alot of other things too.It is a very neat shop they have samples all over the store so you can try the product before
you buy it.We then drove up Ski Mountain Road up to Ober Gatlinburg.While we were there a black bear wondered into the area and there were 2 dogs chasing
after the bear.Employees said the dogs belonged to some renter's that had rented a cabin on Ski Mountain Road and let them run loose.Several employee's had to
go into the woods to try to scare away the bear.We then went to see the bears and other animals they had up at Ober.We went back into Gatlinburg and ate at Calhouns.
It was very good.We shopped some more and before we headed back to Cherokee we stopped at Best Italian and got an order of there Garlic Bread to eat on the way over.
Those things are so good.
We got up and got all of our things ready and checked out of the Inn of the Seven Clans and headed to Townsend,We stopped at Apple Valley and shopped.I bought some
country bacon and some sugar cured ham to bring home to have for dinner one night.We had a great trip.It was so nice to do a girls trip for a change.My friend is now addicted
to the area.I am so glad she got to see Bears.Elk Deer,and wild Turkey's on her first trip to The Great Smoky Mountain's.My 40th Birthday was June 6.So this was a Birthday gift
from my awesome husband(Thank You Baby).I am planning another trip in October for my husbands 40th Birthday too.We like coming to the area that time of the year with
all the tree's changing colors.So this year I will come to Gatlinburg 3 times and it just keeps getting better and better.I have a feeling I will be back
before October maybe another girl's trip who know's.
Thanks for reading my trip report and I hope you enjoy the pictures and video's.