After our couple of days in Asheville, NC we left and headed towards Gatlinburg. As I said in the other post we visited some new places and some old. Well this was one of the places that we have been to before, BUT we looked for some new things to do. We found a few that we have not done done in our visits the past 25 years.
We left Asheville and our first stop was to a restaurant that we had seen a friend post that they had enjoyed on our recent trip. We went to The Buttered Biscuit in Waynesville, NC. We got there and had to wait a bit to get in. The food was good.
We then started our trek on towards the Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge area. Our next stop was the Bush’s Baked Bean Visitor Center in Dandridge/Chestnut Hill, TN. We started the museum tour with a video history and a video tour of how the beans are made. In the video we learned among other things, that each can gets one piece of meat and also that the ovens are really tall and extend out the roof of the building. There could be no pictures or video made of the movie. Gotta keep that recipe secure. LOL!! There is then a museum of various items from through the years of them being in business and how they once did several different vegetables, but have changed to just beans.
There is also a store with all the available products. They had all the flavors of beans, bean chips, souvenirs and all the Duke merchandise. We picked our Grandson up a stuffed plush Duke. We heard that they served really good food in the restaurant, but we had just had a big breakfast and it wasn’t quite time for lunch yet. Maybe on another trip. It was an informative stop!!!
From here we went on into downtown Gatlinburg and we headed towards the Roaring Fork Motor Trail. We had never done this before. We had heard good things about it and had actually tried on a previous visit, but traffic was so bad that day that we ended up at the end of the trail where they have a couple country stores and restrooms. This time we found the beginning. There was still a lot of green and not much fall colors.
The beginning of the trail in a two-way road. We got to a slow area and what we found was that there were park rangers there directing traffic because there were bear cubs in the area by the road and they didn’t want people stopping to look and take pictures. In 25 years of visiting this was the first time that we saw bears.
You can see one of the bear cubs by the tree on the left. The other pictures I too as we were slowly driving by I didn’t get any of the others.
We keep moving along and we come across a bear family playing in a tree near the road. We again drove slowly by and I was able to get quite a few pictures of them. As I was trying to take pictures, Jeff was rolling my window up. I’d have to roll it back down. He threatened to just give me to the bears. We survived our bear sighting!!
There are trails off of the road and there were places that a ton of cars were parked. There was a pull off where you can see a view of the mountains. We didn’t stop and get out for pictures as the are was full of cars, but we did pull over and snap a couple pictures. Eventually the road turns into a one way, one lane road. We did see some turkeys beside the road a some point. The rest of the ride was uneventful. We saw all of the wildlife towards the beginning of the trail.
At the end of the trail we stopped in the little stores and picked up a lemon square. You know I told you before that we had tried to do the trail but ended up at the end with the stores. Well that time we also picked up a lemon square that we delicious! However, this time it was a little to tart. But we did eat it.
It was time to check in to our cabin after we were done. We found our cabin and then we went to a small general store on the corner to pick up a few things. We settled in after we hid the hideous flag with the orange T. Did I tell you were were there the weekend of the Alabama vs Tennessee game?? Yep, it was THAT weekend.
We then went and had dinner with our nephew who was in college nearby. When we got back to the cabin it was after dark. We settled in as we had more plans for things we had not done before the next day.