The Saturday adventuring continued this weekend, as I went “home” to Knoxville. Having lived there for 12 years through college, grad school and post-grad life it became my home. It’s always good to go back and see how it’s changed, and some of the things that stay the same, visit family and friends, and enjoy it as a little respite from life. Next week I will celebrate five great years in Nashville, and this week two years in my own home (hooray!) so I thought it was right to get back to Knoxville where these big plans of life all started.
My sister and I decided to jaunt out to James White Fort in honor of Statehood Day on June 1, celebrating 220 years. While ridiculously hot (hi June in the South) it was really cool to see the juxtaposition of the oldest building in the state against the backdrop of the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame, downtown, and the Tennessee River.
It was a great weekend filled with time well spent thinking on the legacy we are leaving now for people to see two hundred years from now. What are we building in our lives, our homes, the people around us that leaves a lasting imprint like this? What will people read about and discover about us centuries into the future?
It’s the unofficial start to the summer with Memorial Day upon us. I don’t know about you all but here in the South it’s already gotten hot. But one thing’s for certain, Saturdays in the South in the Summer were meant for adventuring.
Sometimes it’s planned and other times it’s on a whim. That’s kind of how I like living my life these days. And we all should enjoy plans and spontaneity.
Stay tuned as I share photos over on the Photopalooza tab (we may rename that to Adventuring) and share some of your favorite places of unplanned or planned collisions with adventure.
So I love to hike…that’s the one sucky part about Nashville is that the Smoky Mountains aren’t a 20 minute drive for me. Man I miss that place. Today I wanted to share my five favorite photos from hikes. As a single gal, I go hiking solo alot (much to the chagrin of friends and family who think it unwise) but it provides thinking time and space to take photos.
Without further ado…
1. Bays Mountain
My original hiking place. It started it all. It’s a quietly nestled away, yet an easy hike. This photo was when I first got interested in hiking photography. It remains my all-time favorite capture. They also have a wildlife refuge full of turkeys, wolves, and other creepy crawlies. My favorite part used to be the Planetarium. I haven’t actually been in that in probably 20+ years.
2. Cades Cove (the loop)
Living as close as I did to the Great Smoky Mountain National Park, I would often take a day off and drive up to one of the hiking trails. A common, and very popular, trail is Cades Cove. It’s an 11-mile loop you can drive, with short 1-2 mile off-shoots to hike on. This place stays packed year-round with visitors, but if you get up there early enough you can sometimes get it to yourself, or yourself and some other nature photographers.
3. Sweet Heifer Trail
Sometimes you just have to get off the beaten trail. This one is exactly what I did. It was a fun experience, but one I knew was out of my hiking experience once I got a mile in the trail. This one is near Clingman’s Dome, but definitely an intermediate hike. I ended up tracking back on this hike instead of climbing further into it. It was the quietest place I think I have ever found though. And stunningly beautiful.
4. Narrows of the Harpeth
While I have hiked some crazy trails before, this one was the one where I experienced the snake coming across the rocks towards me. And I screamed. LOUDLY. Now I am a Southern girl, I know how to shoot a gun and I am okay with the majority of animals, but I inherited my snake fear from my Dad. You don’t play around when they are coming at you. Regardless, this hike was a wet mess. It took far longer to get there than expected and I was disappointed at the trail. But it became my favorite when I got to this trail where the photo was taken. This photo reminds me of so much of where I was in that time. It’s a marking point in my journey and I love that.
5. Bledsoe Creek
This place is nestled back in Gallatin. It’s a drive for sure. On this Spring day earlier this year, it was perfection. This is the only hike I did not do solo in my top five favorites. It holds alot of meaning to me in many ways. This hike is a signpost in my journey that brings a smile to my face and warmth to my soul. The trails are relatively low-key and standard for the middle Tennessee area.
Do you have a favorite spot? What is a hobby you enjoy doing solo? Share below!
Well it’s Friday again. It seems to come once a week now, or am I the only one? Today’s Top Five Friday is a little different. I was planning to throw up some “best of books” for the year, but was having trouble narrowing down my list. So instead for today, I am going to give you five things you may not know about me. It’s fun, it’s different…and we’ve got some new subscribers on the blog so this might be of some interest.
1. I have a crippling fear of clowns. There will be no picture accompanying this first one because I’ll go into a panic attack just searching for an image. A guy I dated years ago really thought he could get me over this fear of clowns, so one night (without my knowledge) he rented Stephen King’s It and put it in for our movie night. I ran screaming from his apartment, and we broke up shortly thereafter. I have had numerous panic attacks over this. It’s not funny and it’s something I truly am terrified of, so please respect that if we should meet in person.
2. I have a 5M dating rule. This entails some of my past but there are essentially five guys I will not date: musicians, morticians, military men, magicians, and guys in ministry work. Two of them I have never dated, and three I have…I am going to let y’all guess. But given the nature of their careers I have chosen for my own personal preference to not date any of them (again).
3. I sew by hand. I have a sewing machine that was gifted to me by my former boss’s mother. It’s a lovely machine, but my mamaw taught me how to sew by hand and it’s something I have retained. Full disclosure is that I am not as good as I used to be at it, but that is something I have lined up to work on in early 2013.
4. I used to dream of being a diner waitress. I was talking with a colleague this week about what we dreamt of being when we were kids. I played at being a waitress in a little roadside diner, and changing my name to Stacy. My mom would buy me the guest check tabs at Sam’s Club so I could play at it. I think it had something to do with watching Alice as a kid.
5. I love doing nature photography and recreational hiking. That was the one thing that really stunk about moving to Nashville (other than leaving family and friends behind in Knoxville and Maryville). I was so close to the Smoky Mountains that I’d often go up there before sunrise for shots. I haven’t gotten to go as much now that I’m in Nashville just because I stay busy with other things now. My goal in 2013 is to get back into that more and explore some new places in the vicinity.