We only had a few hours sleep the last couple days so no sunrise in the mountains! :( We got brunch at Mc Donalds. I still wonder if those ones with 2 lines at the drive thru's gets the orders confused.
Then we went to the Magic Store on the Arts & Crafts Loop. The locals drive way to fast on there or should I say way to close to my rear bumper trying to go to fast! We finely get all the way to the end where the store is and there should be a warning about how bad the road is as you turn into the very small parking area.
There is a very unique plant in the yard that I have never seen before. I wish I could upload pictures right now to show. (Maybe tomorrow)
Out side is a small place where you can do the mining thing for only $5.
We go in the store, it is very hot in there. (Warning, it is a very crowded store if you have little ones that like to touch everything.)
They do have a lot of really nice magic stuff, even the Christian kind that comes with lessons.
The young man there is very nice! He was doing card tricks for another boy and got my grandson in on it. He is really good. He is also a salesman and does try to sell you something but not to the point of aggravating me. We bought a few things.
Out front are the really nice carved bears, they all wanted to go home with me but I just can not bring myself to pay hundreds for them. There was a really nice small one where the little bear is climbing out of the real trunk. I love it but it was over a hundred and you can get a eagle one that size for $30. at LBL!
There is a stream there with little minnows in it to.
Next we went to Newfound Gap Road. (How did I end up with a grandson who does not enjoy stopping at every pull off)
I pulled into Chimney Tops picnic area. Wow! How did I not check that out before! There are three roads of picnic spots, each has a parking place, table, and a grill. The one on the far left is right next to the river but right now there is not much water. There was a lot of people walking on big rocks in the river. There were no spots on that side available and this is on a Wed., so I wonder how early you have to get there to get one on a weekend! It is really beautiful in there.
Next we stopped at the Chimney Tops Trail. I could see a little of the beautiful water near the start of the trail but that is quite a walk when you have bad knees and swollen feet so we did not go down there. It is a busy trail! I think it would be hard to get a parking spot on the weekend!
At the next pull off there were many people picking Queen Anne's Lace flowers. Maybe they should give out a pamphlet telling this is not allowed. I think a lot of people do not know. (I guess a lot do not know you can get chiggers from them either)
At Newfound Gap the TN side looked a lot better than in May. Still a lot of dead trees but the live ones were greener. The NC side had a lot of Black Eyed Susan flowers and some of those pretty blue and black butterflies, and some small yellow, and some small white ones. (I have noticed these small ones around my house a lot this year and have never seen them before this year, what is attracting them?) I kept trying to get good pictures with the flowers,and butterflies and mountains all in one but butterflies were to fast.
Next Clingmans Dome Road! I could not find my paper that I had written down how far Firerfightrs girl had told me where the tunnel is! :( I was thinking the first pull off but I could not hike down to check it out.
At the parking lot for Clingmans Dome I was taking pictures and there were a couple of those blue and black butterflies. I got some really good pictures. I When we were leaving the parking lot I saw that there was a spot of a lot of the butterflies on flowers and got a lot of good pictures!
I had to drive down to that big pull off right past Clingmans Dome Road and get that beautiful view.
We headed back to town.
We parked at the little lot right next to the Village ($6. for all day) so we could go to the Fudgery.
We had to walk right by one of the time share stops and I had forgot the coupon so I was grabbing coupon books at the stand thinking where are these people. As I was walking away they came back to the stand and I missed them! YES! The girl at the Fudgery is a sales person! She tells you all kinds of things to try to get you to buy, like their fudge will not melt no matter what, their fudge has no oil , butter,or fat of any kind in it. She said the best deal was buy 6 get 6 free. I think you could probably get her to do it with less than 6 but we had 5 people on the cell phone telling us their orders so we got that many! We still have a lot left! It is better to us than the real creamy kind but the peanut butter stays creamy. The girl told us we could have free drinks to then she forgot. I reminded her and at first she acted like she did not hear me then like she did not remember but she got them. There was a couple of bumblebees in the case with the fudge but I have never herd of any illnesses from bees. She did not tell me until after I picked out all the kinds and she wrapped them that they were out of boxes! They did have nice big plastic bags.
We then went to Best Italian and waited all night for way to greasy soggy way over priced pizza and garlic rolls that had so much fat they dripped threw the plastic bag and the paper one the plastic one was in. There is a longer report on the pizza thread.
We went back to the room, ate, and I soaked some of the grease off pizza and made boxes fit in the freezer.
We went to see if there were any bears by Roaring Fork drive, there was not! :( Got to see the last few minuets of the sunset at those 2 pull offs on Roaring Fork. That meant we had to drive Roaring Fork in the dark. That is spooky! LOL Guess what, everyone was going so slow they let me go around them! My kids do not believe everyone was slower than me on a drive!
We left the air on all day in the room while we were gone, it was not as cool as I thought it would be but it was cooler than the night before.
Thur. we packed up and headed for Charlotte. Did you know on 321 that way there are 2 gas stations but you can not pay at the pump at either one. One is the old fashioned pumps.
Foothills East was nice. I had forgot about the fire until I saw the burnt trees and ground.
It had been years since I had traveled Hwy 40 that far east. It is so beautiful!