Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Fontana trip - June '09

Fontana Lake was beautiful as always. The best way to visit the Great Smoky Mountain National Park.

click on pictures to enlarge (I forgot my camera on this trip so all of these photos were taken with my cell phone. Not bad for cell phone pics!)

I'm always amazed at the length of the days up in the Smoky Mountains this time of year. This first photo was taken after 9 pm, shortly after sunset with plenty of day light remaining.

The first day, it was foggy and drizzly, so we waited until the next day to hike up out of Eagle Creek via the steep Lost Cove Trail to the Appalachian Trail and the Shuckstack firetower - the best view in the park.

Iska proved to be quite a great hiker, leading me up the steep trail at a relentless pace. Skipping over water crossings and balancing on logs over the creeks. She's also a nice subject to photograph as well!

On the Appalachian Trail, mountain laurel and flaming azaleas were blooming. We saw one bear on the way up and it was running away from us.

It was warm enough to swim and I waterskied after I gave Iska a brief tutorial on how to drive the boat. The water was like glass one morning and I couldn't resist.

We also visited some old family cemeteries, the visitor's center at the dam, and did a hike up the beautiful Forney Creek. I got into a brief debate with a retired TVA worker at the desk at the visitor's center about the North Shore Road controversy. I said, "I'm so glad they didn't build that road! I can't believe anyone would actually consider that a viable option." The old lady said "why not?" That set me off. Iska would say I was being pugilistic. (heh...look that one up)

Awesome trip.


Old Man and mid pack runner said...

looks like a good time.

no bike on this trip? have you done the tn dirt devil dual purpose trail?

William said...

No bike on this trip. I only take my bike when going alone to give myself something to do.

Hey, thanks for the tip on the local trail. I just googled it, must check it out this summer when it gets dry. I'm not much of a 'mudder.'

How's the legs? Not training, just running slow to stay in shape. I'm sure you're keeping my neighbor in shape. I really hate running if it's over 70.

jacob c said...

You big flirt.


Hey, x-c course from what i understand this weekend.. easy on the knees!

democommie said...

Hi, William:

It's been a pretty crazy couple of months. I keep thinking I'm about ready to start walking again and then my knee goes soft on me. I finally got accepted into the VA healtcare system and hopefully then can figure out what the problem is.

That looks like some fine hiking.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for your accounting of the Fontana trip.
We live in Tellico Village, Loudon, TN.
Have done one day trip on the Lake in our 16 foot Zodiac Inflatable.
The last two years my brother in law and I have camped 2 nights, then 3 nights this year on Double Island. We did these prior trips with two Achilles Inflatables, nominal 10 footers.
Nice Blogsite, beautiful music.
I always wanted a 268 Searay like yours.
My email is
Dennis Adams
Formerly MI, ID, FL now TN. Beautiful State.