It has been 19 years (Yosemite Trip) since the last time I camped out. I did not have a good night sleep, I kept waking up throughout the night. I woke up for the last time at 6:30 am. The temp was a balmy 47 degrees. You have to love fall in the mountains. It was perfect hiking weather though.
The first item on the agenda was the Cades Cove Loop. I only had about an hour and a half to go through because I had to be back at the Rangers Stations between 8am-9am to check in since I arrived too late the night before. The first thing I ddi was make the 1/4 hike to the 3rd stop on the loop – the John Oliver Place. Fortunately I was the only one there, unfortunately, I was not the only one on the loop. I was also able to shoot Primitive Baptist Church (Stop 4), Methodist Church (Stop 5) and Missionary Baptist Church (Stop 7). They all look very similar. Unfortunately I was not able to shoot the Cable Grist Mill (Stop 11) which would come back and haunt me.
I finished the loop and headed to the Ranger Station where I checked in. While I was there, I picked up a few brochures include the Cades Cove Auto Tour booklet. The map to the left is in the book. I then headed to the campground store where I picked up a few souvenirs including a tee shirt not realizing it was an XL. I took it back later that afternoon and exchanged it for a medium. That is what happens when you don’t have your reading glasses with you. I had misplaced them and didn’t find them until later that day, they had fallen between the passenger seat and the door. Sucks getting old.
There were MANY more people the 2nd time through the loop, traffic was backed up. I hiked up to the John Oliver Cabin once again to take more photos but this time with different light, a much brighter light, than the first time around. Same with the churches.
Due to the length of this post, I’m dividing it into at least 2 different blog posts. The next post will be my hike to Abrams Falls.