Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Day 97 - Parks, Waterfalls & Bears! Oh my!

Consider this a warning...its a pic heavy post today. :) That's because its been a non-stop day of action on our first day here in "Gatlinberry" as O called it yesterday. After a what seems like very quick and restless night, we hit the ground running today. Hubs didn't have to go to his conference until noon so we went to a park up the road this morning. O played on the slides, etc then we went to the other side of the park where this creek/river/whatever it is flows through all the rocks. People were down in the water playing, etc. Hubs took O down and we took his shoes off and he threw rocks and had a blast just being a boy playing in a creek.

After playing at the park we took a drive around to check out some trails that Hubs told me he wants to take O on later. For those of you that don't know me very well...I'm not much of an outdoorsy trail hiking kinda gal. I'd much prefer to shop or something. So I wasn't too keen on the fact of going on a trail hike. Anyway, it was time now to take Chris back for his conference and O had fallen asleep in the car. At this time I thought maybe I could put him in the stroller and stroll down to the strip in Gatlinburg. You know, browse around at some shops, etc. while he got in a good little nap. WRONG. He woke up as I was putting sunscreen on his face before I ever even got him out of the carseat. Ugh. Well I thought I would give it a shot anyway. We basically made it down to the strip, to the most chaotic McDonald's I've ever seen in my life that almost gave me an anxiety attack, got lunch, ate outside and walked back up the big hill to our hotel. By the time we got back I was sweating and exhausted. And just knew he would take a decent nap. WRONG AGAIN. Ugh. After an hour and 1/2 of trying to get him to lay down I finally put him in the car. Where we drove around for another hour and 1/2 and he slept. Then we picked up hubs since his stuff was now over for the day. In class he learned of a different trail. A paved one that leads back to a waterfall called Laurel Falls. Okay. I'll give this a shot since he really wants to I guess. We get on this trail and I am not kidding...its 1.3 miles UP A MOUNTAIN! Ahh! Finally we made it to Laurel Falls. It was nice and all but I think I'd survive this lifetime if I never went back to Luarel Falls again. ;) Here I was thinking we would mosey down this easy walking trail. NO. We were HIKING UP A MOUNTAIN! With a 2-year old in tow. Oh well. It did make for some lovely pictures.

Perhaps the highlight of the day was after we left Laurel Falls and were driving back. We had noticed all of these cars on the sides of the road on the way up there and people out looking at something in the woods. A park ranger was even out there waving people through. On the way back there were even more people so I rolled down the window and asked the ranger what they were looking at. YES. You guessed it..."a bear." What?!? I told Chris we HAD TO STOP! So I put on my telephoto, which still didn't get me close enough but its close enough. :) There was a momma bear and her cub. There. In the wilderness down in a ravine. Holy cow! Holy Bears! How cool! I had just asked Chris on the way up there if there were really bears out here. Now I've seen the proof!

We then went to dinner, came back to the hotel, switched rooms to a nicer one, and now I'm just pooped. And this is long enough. Hope you in enjoyed my 1st days post from Gatlinberry. ;)


  1. Yikes!! A bear!!! That is crazy!! Love the pictures :O) Enjoy your vaca!!

  2. Sounds like you're having a great time! Love all of the pictures... especially the bear... how exciting!!! :)

  3. What great memories you are making in Gatinberry! :). AMAZING pictures, Melissa!!!