Ooo… the beautiful Great Smokey Mountains …

My favorite season is fall so much that I got married in October. So for our anniversary trip, I found a train ride near the Great Smokey Mountains. What a great fall trip that would be!! So we started on October 2 and it was in the 90’s and we headed past Nashville it was 102!!! Where are you fall???

We arrived in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee which had a huge strip filled with activities, museums, and restaurants. We headed out in the morning through the Smokey Mountains from the Tennessee side to Western North Carolina.

As we are making our way through the Smokey Mountains, we are just in amazement of the mountains. There wasn’t the fall foliage that we were hoping for but it was just beautiful. I take a lot of pictures for my blog and to put on social media. My husband was driving and so every time I would gasp over the beauty, I would have him pull over so I can get some photos. I would say it is gorgeous over there and let me get a picture. He was a trooper so I would take pictures and when we get back into the car, he would drive a little further and I would just gasp “Oh, that is just gorgeous!” I would get out of the car and we would do it again and so probably after an hour of that, he said “We are never going to get to the train on time.” Point well taken!!

So we finally arrived at our destination in Bryson City, North Carolina, We checked in at the gallery and picked up our souvenir tickets and our tickets stubs. We boarded the train and the train rides to Dillsboro, North Carolina. We time to grab some lunch and check out the shops before getting back on the train to return to Bryson City. Along the way to Dillsboro, we were able to see movie crash footage from the movie set of The Fugitive starring Harrison Ford that was made in 1993.

I am a fan of all things Harrison Ford so it was right up my alley. In the movie, he is arrested for murder and they are moving a bus load of prisoners in a bus and the bus collides with a train. The bus and the train fall off the train tracks below and the prisoners get out of the bus and the chase begins. On the train trip, we got to see the wreckage of the bus and the train all smashed up. We didn’t get to get out and take a look at it but we did get some great pictures!

After we got back to Pidgeon Forge, my husband got tickets to the Titanic museum. If you know anything about me, I’m a big Titanic fan. I read a lot about the Titanic and so it was a great surprise for our anniversary. Unfortunately, inside the museum you couldn’t take any pictures but it was fun to see all kinds of artifacts from the Titanic. They had different scenes set up from the class staterooms to the Grand Staircase. You could walk on the bridge and even experience the temperature of the water and touch an iceberg. One of the cool displays was to experience walking on deck as floor shifted due to one side starting to submerge under water.

Upon arriving at the museum, you were given a card detailing a passenger. At the end of the museum, you discovered if you perished or not. I was actually a third class passenger with 6 children and I perished in the sinking. My husband was in second class and survived to tell the tale!!! If you ever have the chance to tour the museum, it is well worth it!! Hope you survive!!!

The next day I talked my husband into going for a hike in the Great Smokey Mountains. He was a little reluctant but agreed. I found this place called Clingmen’s Dome that was on the North Carolina side of the park. If you park at the lot, it is only a 1/2 mile. From that point, you can also hike down 7 miles along the Appalachian Trail and back up. As you can guess, we opted for the 1/2 mile.

We made it to the parking lot and the weather had definitely changed from the heat. We started on the trail to go up a half a mile and noticed that it was terribly steep and I also noticed that there were benches along the trail as you go up. Jokingly, I said that was where the older people sit and rest. We had not gone very far and we were on those benches!!!! That crow didn’t taste too good!!!We discovered how much we were out of shape and I actually exercise pretty regularly so I was amazed that I was out of breath!!!

We made it to the top of Clingman’s Dome. It is in the middle of the forest and is 6600 feet with a steep upgrade. Once you were at the top of the dome, it was very cold but you were actually over the trees and in the clouds. It is a gorgeous, gorgeous place! If you are ever in the Smokey Mountains, it is definitely worth the trip and it is free!! After we came down, they have a gift shop at the base of the dome so we stocked up on t-shirts for the grandkids!

Since I got to go to the Titanic Museum, I wanted to go to the Civil War Museum because my husband loves topics on the Civil War. They were sold out so where else to go but the Alcatraz Crime Museum!!! It was really cool and had a chronological start filled with terror, crime and punishment. If you watch crime detective shows, it had a section on DNA fingerprinting that was really cool!!

A great trip to the Smokey Mountains in Tennessee and North Carolina!! Well worth the trip!!! Check it out!!!