Monday, May 27, 2019

A little bit of post-rally fun

The SEW2GETHER officially ended with Friday’s finale party – with a catered BBQ dinner, monstrous pies, and prizes.  It was a fun evening, and a great wrap-up to a wonderful week.  Since the Airing of the Quilts in Franklin was cancelled on Saturday, Debbie found a few quilt shops in nearby Waynesville and Maggie Valley and put together an optional impromptu shop hop.

Some of the attendees headed out for home on Saturday, but a pretty big group stuck around and went shopping on Saturday morning.  Tom and I decided to join in – we figured we’d go to a couple shops (or I would, he was just driving!), then go check out the elk herd in Maggie Valley, and have dinner in Waynesville.

True to the forecast, it was a rainy, foggy morning. 

We got a late start, waiting for a break in the rain to be able to get Casey out for a walk before we left.  There was finally a short break in the rain and we were able to get her out, then headed out.  I wanted to go to Maggie Valley first, and it looked like we could cut off some distance by taking the Blue Ridge Parkway across to the valley.

It was a good idea . . . but we (I) made a slight mis-interpretation of the map, and we ended up going the wrong way on the Parkway.  Oops!

We had actually driven several miles in the wrong direction before I realized what had happened, and then a couple more miles before Tom found a spot to get turned around!  But it was a beautiful drive!

There were multiple waterfalls running down the side of the mountain, and lots of rhododendron and mountain laurel in bloom.  So, we drove a few extra miles on the Parkway (so much for a shortcut!), but it was enjoyable!

We arrived in Maggie Valley, and then had to drive back up the mountain to reach the quilt shop!  LOL!

It was totally worth it, though – what a great shop!  I found everything I was looking for, and we didn’t even have to stop at the other shops.  See – I made up for my little mishap from earlier in the day!

With my shopping complete, we headed back up into the mountains, towards the Cataloochee area of the Smoky Mountains.  It was an interesting drive – lots of twists and turns!

We’ve done this drive before – back in the fall of 2012 when we were first on the road as fulltime RVers.  Nicolas was driving that time . . . and it’s where we started calling these switchback curves “U-turns” . . . and we still say that!

We saw this Bigfoot statue on the way up, and didn’t remember that from our last trip!

As we climbed higher, it was like a rainforest!

We reached the top of the mountain, and descended the other side into the National Park.

With all the rain, we weren’t sure how many elk were going to be out and about, but we were pleasantly surprised to see some as soon as we entered the park.

We continued on along the wildlife drive, but didn’t see anymore elk.  We did see several groups of turkeys, though!

The mountains were still beautiful, even in the fog.

The stream running alongside the road was extremely high and running really fast!

We reached the end of the road without seeing anybody else, but at the parking area at the end, there was a group of guys getting ready to hike into the woods. 

We weren’t doing any hiking, though – too wet!

As we drove back, we spotted a couple more elk in the meadow along the road,

and back at the ranch house and barn, a few more had gathered and were resting in the tall grass.

I just had to include this photo from our visit in 2012 – it’s just too funny – Bryce was being a bull elk!

Our visit this year was as eventful for the number of elk that we saw, but it was still a beautiful drive!

Leaving the park, we made out way into Waynesville where we had a nice italian dinner, and then went to mass at a cute little church.

Back at the RV Resort, the rain had moved out for the day and we had a pleasant evening.  The next day was nice, too, with just a little bit of rain in the morning.  The campground had coffee and donuts in the office, and we said good-bye to the  many attendees that were leaving.  We had two more days, and there were a few others staying until Tuesday, too. 

On Monday afternoon, the group put together an impromptu potluck, with Kim & Roy grilling fajitas for the group that included the remaining rally attendees, as well as Mike & Polly.  It was a nice evening, and a great way to wrap up our stay!

Had to get Ron in the picture, too!

Thanks everyone, for a lot of fun, and looking forward to seeing you again on the road!

1 comment:

  1. Even with a wrong turn the scenery in the area is beautiful.
    Also nice getting together with friends then crossing paths again down the road.
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.


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