07 June 2009

In the woods and back at home

I had so many wonderful photos from that last trip to the Smokies, I just had to share. The first seven photos were taken on a lovely trail on the Doughton Park Trail system. We were there on a weekday and pretty much had the trail to ourselves.
As far as I am concerned that trail was just about perfect. There was some up and some down. Short stretches of strenuous walking mixed with easy strolls. The weather was also perfect. At one point when we were on our way back out, it started to sprinkle. We could hear it on the canopy of trees but only felt a drop or two. The trail winds around the hillside. In some places it is quite narrow then it widens out and
goes through trees and wildflowers. Pure peace!

There are wild berries blooming all over the place. It is also a bear sanctuary. Do you think there is a connection? We did not see any bears on this trail, but I bet they know where the berries are. I particularly like this photograph with the Berry blossoms in the foreground.

We did not see any bears on this trail, but evidently, the trees are hungry. See this one is eating the bottom sign. I have not photoshoped this picture, but you can bet I will. You can almost see the face already, it only needs a little help.

Isn't this the most amazing mushroom you have ever seen? There were three of these grouped together. this one is at least two feet across! The second is probably about eighteen inches and the third much smaller. It looks like a pile of some sort of dough.
Can't you just see a whole flock of fairies perched on this?

Another pretty wild flower. I will have to ask my friend Lynn what this one is called. (She is brilliant!) These grown in clumps together and they remind me a little bit of some my Mom had growing in her garden.

Another great view, these are the reward for climbing. The air is cool and crisp, just a light breeze. We stopped right here for a while. It feels a little like being in church.

Here is an historic moment with our trusty Toyota Corolla. She reached 100,000 miles on this trip and she still looks great (runs great too). That is of course my favorite chauffeur, also known as my Sweet Hubby. We knew she was getting close to the big number so we were watching. He glanced down at just the right moment and pulled over for me to take the photos.

When we got back home we were greeted by a lovely smell. The Magnolia is blooming. As usual these blossoms are huge.

This little gem was going across the road in front of us when we went out for a walk the other day. Isn't he pretty? I think he looks a bit like a "Gummy" snake, you know made from the same stuff as "Gummy Bears" (I love the little German ones made by Haribo). This little guy is only about a foot and a half long.

Another one of the rewards that go with living here. This is a stuffed crust pepperoni pizza with extra cheese. It was made completely from scratch by my Sweet Hubby. It was even better than it looks!

I went out to take photos of my tiger lilies while they were at their best and spotted a visitor in my lavender (isn't the lavender doing great too)? I will have to harvest some soon. If I cut the flowers now and bring them in to dry, the plant will produce more before the summer is over. It drys easily and is the smell lingers nicely. I make old fashioned lavender wands to put in our dresser drawers and with the linens. It smells nice and discourages moths. I will have to post a photo and some instructions.

One of the tiger lilies. They are also close to perfect this year. I have a great crop. My Mom grew these in her garden when we were young too.

What is Black & White and Lazy all over? Spontaneous the cat. She has such an expressive face.

And, last but not least, the star of the show! This fine specimen was crossing the road. He is a snapping turtle. He is also huge! Big enough that even the eighteen wheelers were slowing down and driving carefully around him. Usually my Sweet Hubby will stop and remove turtles from the road to keep them from being run over( he carries heavy duty paper towels in the car just for this). However, we were warned not to try it with this guy, he has a very long and agile neck. Did you get a look at those claws! We left well enough alone. Kind of him to pose so nicely for me though.

That is the end for this week. See you soon. Kat


  1. It sounds as though you had a great trip. The views are stunning. I love that turtle.

  2. I love all the pictures, what a wonderful place you live in and what great places you've visited :)

    Kim x


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