Today was moving day again, and our final one to get to Pigeon Forge so we can visit the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
It was a beautiful morning, we are in the middle of the woods, on a mountain at 1100ft and it’s awesome to wake up and look outside and see all the trees, with the sun rays coming through them. Even though the girls have no school today, I still woke up at my usual time as I wanted to get some work done. Bella woke up at 7, much earlier than usual. She had not finished her school work yesterday, so before she could use her phone or what not, she had to finish it, and she got right to it without complaining.
There was a train somewhere nearby, I heard it overnight, and just heard it now again. Kind of cool. Oh, and it was a cold morning again at 48F, I had one of the space heaters out, so I got that going right after I got my coffee going. When Bella woke up, she ended up laying on the floor in front of the space heater and doing her school work right there. She did most of the work pending but did not finish it all as she could not find a paper she needed to do and hand in. I wanted to leave so we let her finish that later. Carol woke up soon after Bella, and Bia woke up a bit later and we all got going. I only had a few things to do outside, and the only additional was the second sewer hose I had to use as the sewer connection was a bit further away. Once Carol closed the slideout, I wrapped up and we were out of there by 9:30.
Our drive was pretty good, mostly straight highways, but the more into Tennessee we got, we started seeing more mountains. They are not big mountains, but are mountains nonetheless and we had not seen mountains for a while. We hit some big city roads as well, and some spots where we were driving for a few miles and turning into another big road, and then again and again. I don’t like those areas, they are usually bumpy, traffic is a bit chaotic and it’s such a web of roads that if you miss a turn it takes a while to recover. Then, once we got to the Smoky Mountains area it got pretty busy. We also ended up on a pretty small windy road for a couple of miles, but no big deal. Our campground is right off the main road downtown Pigeon Forge, and we arrived just around 1pm. We had made a stop on the way at a truck stop, so we could have some lunch and use the bathroom. And it was another stop where the smell of urine was super strong. Yuck.
We lined up by our campground and they came to us to check in, so no need to get out of the car. We were given a spot right by the office, just a right turn then a left turn. A guy still escorted us and helped guide the back in. I took the bars out first, so I’d not be worrying about them and it’d be easier to turn. It was a bit tight to park due to a tree right by the concrete line, but there was enough room on the street to maneuver. I backed in pretty good on the first try, and just had to go forward once to adjust for the tree and get as close to the line as possible. The concrete on the ground is very bumpy, and we were sure we’d need to do some major leveling, but to our surprise, it was actually just right.
Today as we setup, we got all our things out since we will be here for almost a week. We got our chairs, table, grill, etc. I got all the stabilizers setup as well, and the wooden ones in the front had to move closer to the tires as the tree was on the way of the usual spot, but it worked still pretty good. When we were done setting up, Carol and I sat outside having a beer and relaxing. We were enjoying the clam, being in the middle of trees, with the sound of birds and under the shade.
The weather was nice and warm and it felt great. The girls were inside drawing, and eventually I called them outside. They wanted to check the pool, so they went there, we are very close to the pool and office. They came back saying they wanted to go in the pool, it is nice, with a little lazy river, and it is heated as well. They changed and Carol took them while I finished some stuff and grabbed beers to go. The girls enjoyed the pool for probably 90 minutes or so. Carol and I enjoyed being in the sun and talking, making plans, discussing potential business ideas, etc.
When the girls were done we went back and made plans to go out to eat at a local place. I called about reservations and they said they were booked for the day and only taking walk ins, which would be 45-60 minutes. I wanted to check it out, so we had the girls change as they were and we left to go to Local Goat. The place is not far from us, but there’s traffic now. We got there, Carol checked in, tried to leave the reservation in my name but the guy was having a hard time with the name, so she went with my Starbucks name, “Bob”. hahahahaha. I think we waited for maybe 30 minutes and I got a text that they were ready for us.
The place was pretty packed as we got seated. The menu is pretty decent, but burgers is their thing, and most things are locally sourced. Bia got a steak, Bella got a Cheeseburger, Carol got a plant based burger and I got a Whiskey Burger. We also got the fried deviled eggs to try, and they were pretty good. I tried an IPA too and it was great. We had a good meal there, it was fun and we were playing trivia with stuff related to our trip, like names of cities, states, events that happened, etc.
After dinner we went to Walmart, I left Carol and Bia and took Bella with me to get gas and DEF. With this weird shortage I wanted to make sure we had a full tank for the weekend, and there was a station nearby so I went there and we filled up. I also got a small jug of DEF, firewood and lighting fluid. Bella and I waited for a while in the truck in the parking lot, Walmart was pretty full and Carol said it was quite chaotic in there, with huge lines at the check outs.
When we got back to the campground, the girls showered and I got the fire going. As they were done, they joined us outside and we hung out outside for a while. Bia had smores, Bella had some marshmallows, and I had some beers. hahahaha… we had a nice time, and continued chatting and having fun together by the campfire. It had been a while since our last campfire. I still had firewood from Saint Augustine with us, so we burned that one and a bit of the new one. When the girls were done, they went in to go to bed, and Carol went in to tuck them in and shower. I stayed out a little longer, but as the fire died down I went inside too. I showered, caught up on some emails, and then went to bed around midnight.
We had a good moving day to Pigeon Forge and enjoyed our first afternoon in the Smoky Mountains area.