I’m in the midst of preparing an itinerary for a last-minute trip to the Great Smokey Mountains National Park for this weekend! I found the cutest studio cottage for only $60 a night–10 miles from Gatlinburg, situated on 2 acres–with a pond. Here are some photos from the owner’s site…
I’ve been to Gatlinburg a couple of times years ago, but never hiking in the National Park. When my son was young, we would take a 12 hour road trip in our conversion van to Myrtle Beach every year, taking along a friend for him. They had it pretty good…with a T.V., Nintendo and plenty of leg room! We stopped in Gatlinburg once on the way back.
Anyway, after researching the available hikes, I’ve decided the Charlies Bunion 8 mile round trip hike on the Appalachian Trail sounds like it will be the perfect hike for us! It’s at the top of the mountain with amazing views! I have no desire to window shop in Gatlinburg, but would like to drive into the town of Cherokee in North Carolina. I’ve heard it’s only 25 minutes from where we’ll be hiking. One of the nice things about renting a place like this is being able to cook there to keep your expenses down. So, here’s the proposed itinerary:
Friday – May 24th
8am – Depart
12noon – Stop at Cafe4 in Knoxville‘s Market Square District (I think I want the Shrimp and Grits…yum!)
1:30pm – Hit the road again
2:30-3:00pm – Arrive
Unpack – Relax – Explore property – take a walk
5:00pm – Make Steak dinner
Watch a DVD
Saturday – May 25th
6:00am – Wake up – Brft – Make sandwiches for lunch
(This is where the Charlies Bunion trail is located)
7:30am – Hit the Trail
10:30am – Stop for early lunch on the trail
12:00pm – Drive to Cherokee, N.C.
12:30pm – Explore town
2:00pm – Drive back to cottage
3:30pm – Arrive
4:30pm – Prepare pasta or dine out
Sunday – May 26th
Unscheduled – possible activities:
Have breakfast out at either Log Cabin Pancake House or Cracker Barrel
Drive/Hike around Cades Cove area
Grotto Falls Trail
Porters Creek Trail
Have lunch or dinner at: Old Mill Pottery House Cafe (at Traffic Light #7 in Pigeon Forge)
Monday – May 27th
Cereal for brft.
10am – Depart for home
Here’s my food shopping list:
I usually eat healthier at home, but we’ll be on vacation!
Hope everyone has something fun planned for Memorial Day weekend, or if you’re staying home, I think it’s nice to have friends over for a barbecue! Whatever you do…make it fun!!
- Enter the Great Smokey Mountain National Park (2180miles.wordpress.com)
- Embrace Plan B (Part I): The “I Like Lemonade” Trip (hikerdude.wordpress.com)
- Nature Valley Trail View Adds Sequoia National Park To Virtual Hikes (gadling.com)
- All the Good People (barbonabike.wordpress.com)
- Let’s just get the heck out of the Smokies (mymeanderingtrail.com)
- Day 31: Rocket fuel! (thumperwalk.wordpress.com)
- Day 21; Mile 206.8; Newfound Gap, Great Smoky Mountains National Park (nickslongwalk.wordpress.com)