Great Smoky Mountains
The first rule of visiting a national park (even a no-fee one) is to find a park ranger. I've found they are incredibly helpful at providing great itineraries for whatever you want to do. If you want to hike, they'll give you the best trails and the appropriate difficulty for you. If you want to drive, they'll give you scenic loops at viewpoints, and if you want to take pictures, they'll tell you where the spectacular vistas are and how to get there. I love the park rangers!
Looking toward Georgia.
Looking toward Tennessee.
Lots of golden infieldia in this picture!
We were driving along enjoying the beautiful scenery (just as my Mom had taught us), and then ... dun, Dun, DUN!
WE SAW A BEAR!!
We had been hoping to see a bear; there is a lot of information about what to do if you see one in all the Smoky Mountain literature, but I figured with my lousy luck we would be lucky to see a deer let alone a bear.
It was the highlight of the day, for sure.