Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Tennessee, Kentucky and Home

After hanging around Cades Cove Campgrounds for a few more days we headed on over to Fall Creek Falls State Park.  This area is known for it's many waterfalls and cascades.  The area is very beautiful and at this time of year the traffic is almost nonexistent.  Barbara and I mentioned several times how we were the only vehicles on a 6 lane highway!  

As one who enjoys taking lots of photographs, this time of year had it's challenges.  Being late fall, the sun rises late in the morning and sets early in the afternoon.  It doesn't reach what I call "high noon" but just has a low sweeping arc over the mountainous terrain, rarely getting down into the gorges and lighting up the falls and cascades.  Makes the waterfalls less awe-inspiring in my opinion.

Fall Creek Falls

There were several suspension bridges in the area that we enjoyed walking across and all had a sign warning of jumping up and down on the bridge or causing it to swing and sway.  Quite frankly, just walking across these bridges created more than enough "bounce and sway" for the two of us!

Suspension bridge over the cascades near Fall Creek Falls.

It was just a gorgeous day with plenty of scenic overlooks.

"George Hole" on Cane Creek

Not very far from our campsite was a place called "George Hole".  Just a small pull off, it had several picnic tables, nice rock formations and a small waterfall or cascade that are a part of Cane Creek.  It made a nice place to walk around and take a few photos.

Cane Creek Falls

Fall Creek Falls State Park has a nice Nature Center that we stopped a couple of times at.  Behind the Nature Center were trails that lead to several waterfalls including the Cane Creek Falls.  I really enjoyed this one because you could view the falls and creek from the suspension bridge that spanned the falls, or hike down to the creek bed.  It was beautiful, serene, and I had the whole place to myself!  Nice.

Underground sourced Rock Island State Park falls and cascades

Rock Island State Park was very interesting to me. Comprised of 883 acres, there were some nice trails along both sides of Caney Creek. There's a beautiful waterfall and cascade that spills down from an underground cavern into the Caney Fork, just beyond the powerhouse.  The waterfall was created by the Great Falls Dam, which caused the Collins River to rise. The rising waters began seeping into underground caverns on Rock Island's south shore and exiting at the falls on the north shore.

Jenny Wiley Stakes, an annual race named after my Great-Great-Great Grandmother.

Trainers giving a couple of the race horse their daily workout

Once done in Tennessee, we headed La Casita (our RV's name) towards Kentucky, arriving at Boonesboro State Park on a Monday.   All fort activities were closed until the weekend and we were not going to stay that long so we used our down time to explore the surrounding area and Lexington.  One interesting thing we did was sign up for a walking tour of Keeneland Race Track.  We enjoyed watching the thoroughbreds work out and Barbara got to get up close and personal with a couple of the horses and the trainers at the barns while I hung around the track and gift shop.

With the night time temperatures dropping fast, we hurried back to Ohio on a Friday to get our unit winterized the following Monday and put back into storage.  I camped out at Alum Creek Campgrounds near Sunbury, OH on Saturday and Sunday and enjoyed some nice visits from family and friends.  Temps got down to the low 20s Sunday evening and even though there was a slight freezing issue on our unit, it was finally winterized Monday morning, cleaned out and tucked safely inside it's winter storage barn.

                           A few stats for the trip:
Miles driven on the RV 1,086
Miles driven on the car 2,177 (gee, guess we did a lot of exploring in each location!)
Gas was so much cheaper with this trip than any of our previous adventures. Lowest price paid $1.77/gallon.

Number of nights at campgrounds - 22 and the average cost per night was $20.22 (that's pretty good). 

We enjoyed some really good food on this trip including some incredible Bourbon Chocolate from Lexington, KY.  There are some awesome restaurants in the most out of the way places.  But just so you know we also ate "at home" (La Casita) quite a bit, least you think we were always eating out.

The next time "La Casita" is rolled out will be next April/May, pointing her nose towards New Mexico (where she really belongs) to carry Barbara and I on a whole new life full of adventures and challenges.   This latest trip confirmed for us that YES, we really do want to live this lifestyle. We hope that you'll continue to follow our blog and stay with us for the ride.

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