{a panoramic view of the Smokies}


We have so many pictures of the Smokies…


…the views just kept getting better and better the farther we went 🙂


{7 sIsTeRs + 2 BrOtHeRs}


We were blessed in that the trees were all starting to turn at the time we visited…





…it was so colorful!


We stopped a couple of times to get out and take some pictures.




The bestest parents ever 😉



Anna and Charissa in their floppy Florida hats…


{More pretty colors}




Our goal was to visit the tallest point of the Smokies…Clingman’s Dome.


One funny-but-not-so-‘sweet’-story…we stopped another time to get leftover pizza out of the cooler for our lunch…earlier we had been complaining that the pizza was stinking up the van…it was just kind of strong!  Well, when we stopped, an even MORE overwhelming smell greeted us.  Someone had emptied their camper sewage off the side of the mountain! YUCK!  We suddenly welcomed the pizza smell and were deeply inhaling the aroma of pizza until we got out of that stinky area!!!




A pretty picture of the valley…




We did this in ‘panoramic’ mode on our camera, but instead of matching it up horizontally, we stacked different views vertically…this would make a pretty bookmark 🙂


The winding roads were fun…and our ears kept popping because of the pressure as we went up.



When we reached the top of Clingman’s Dome, we were amazed and delighted to find that they had put Genesis 1 on this sign 😀


At home, we sometimes like to imagine that the clouds are mountains, but weren’t sure how accurate our imaginations were!  However, when we saw the distant mountains here, we realized our imaginations weren’t *too* far off 😀


This isn’t a very good comparison, since the sun is coming up over the clouds on this picture, but this gives you a little bit of an idea of our ‘Indiana mountains’  😀


Some of the youngers climbed up on the big rocks before we started the 1/2 mile hike up to the top…




When we saw all of these dead trees, we thought maybe there had been a fire…but someone told us that some kind of bug or disease was killing them 🙁




More pretty views on the way up to the observation tower…


The thin mountain air was an experience!  We kept getting out of breath in a very short time…


We had climbed Cape Hatteras, the tallest lighthouse in America with hardly any breaks,






…but climbing a slight slope, 1/2 a mile up the mountain tired us out more!


We finally reached the observation tower, which was 30 to 40 feet tall.  They had a ramp that circled up to the top…






{Looking down from the top}




The view from the top of the tower was even more amazing…they said that visibility was 20+ miles.  On a clearer day you can see up to about 70 miles!




You can kind of see Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge behind the mountain in front…





More amazing views…


Another panoramic view…from the observation tower.


{Family picture}  (-:



The observation tower


This is part of the Appalachian trail that stretches from Maine to Georgia…one side is Tennessee, the other side is North Carolina, so of course we had some fun with that!  Tennessee is on the left, North Carolina on the right.


Some of them were in two states at once!


Part of the trail…


More views of the Smokies…


We finally had to come back down…and then it was time to head home!


Cassia, writing in her visual journal…and making crazy faces with Anna!


When we stopped for supper, we noticed a cross on the side of the mountain 🙂


We stayed our very last night of vacation near the Smokies, and boy were they ‘smoky’ the next morning 😀  It looked like someone had lit hundreds of campfires all over the moutains!



…we drove all day that day, stopping at Cracker Barrell for supper, where we all acted like little kids, looking at all of their Christmas things that were out already 😀


We know we said this yesterday, but we have one last post for you about our East Trip 🙂  We took several crazy pictures when we got home, kind of like this one, that we thought you might like to see 😀






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East Trip: Smoky Mountains
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12 thoughts on “East Trip: Smoky Mountains

  • October 8, 2011 at 8:54 pm

    I love the photos. 🙂 I love the Smoky Mountains, but i haven’t ever been to see them.


  • October 9, 2011 at 2:15 am

    Beautiful photos! I love the picture of all of you with your backs to the camera! Your hair is super long! Mine used to be ALMOST as long, but then I cut it off because it’s also very curly and it got difficult to look after.

  • October 9, 2011 at 7:55 am

    Yay! This is so neat! My dad and brothers were in that area just a few days ago!!!

    BTW “Smokie” is spelt “Smokey” just wanted to let you know 😉

    Have a nice day 🙂

  • October 9, 2011 at 6:06 pm

    I love the picture of your braids hanging down your backs 😀 So “cute” 😆

    have a nice day!

  • October 10, 2011 at 2:11 am

    WOW! How beautiful!!! ALMOST as beautiful as Alaska 😀 The Genesis 1 sign was awesome! I think the “being in two states at once” pic is my favorite 🙂 Those fall colors were really amazing, postcard worthy!

    • October 12, 2011 at 1:39 am

      Really?!! How neat!!! We have a great uncle who lives in TN, too 🙂

        • October 12, 2011 at 11:54 pm

          He lives on the west side of the state 🙂 Just a few minutes away from the Mississippi River 🙂

  • October 20, 2011 at 8:22 pm

    So beautiful!!! I just love the Smokey mountains!!! Are all time favorite is Clingman’s Dome but we always go on a cloudy day. 🙁 So the view isn’t as great as I can see you had. 😀


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