Shenandoah, Roanoke and The Great Smokey Mountains

Trip Start Jun 20, 2006
Trip End Jul 06, 2006

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Flag of United States  , Tennessee
Thursday, June 29, 2006

The next day we picked up a hire car at Ronald Regan Airport, and drove up towards Tennessee and the next part of our trip. We drove through Shenandoah National Park, following the road for a hundred miles or so before it turned into the Blue Ridge Parkway. This was such a good experience - fantastic views, some awesome drivers roads, and the highlight for me - the sighting of 4 Black Bears! We saw a cub cross the road someway in front of us, and then around the corner a guy on a motorbike waved us down to show us a Mum and two cubs in the woods, about 4 meters from the road - was breathtaking to watch them for what seemed like ages. The photos really don't do it justice, as I were too busy watching to be taking pictures! After a full days driving, we stayed over at a cheap motel in Roanoke, Virginia.

The next day was going to be another full days drive, so we hit the highway early, enabling us to take a nice detour into Kentucky to Cumberland Gap State Park. We did a short trek into the hills here, following the routes the "forefathers" used to cross into the West.

From here it was straight sailing into Tennessee, down to Gatlinburg, home of the Great Smokey Mountains National Park.
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