As those of you who have read this blog for over a year know, Spring is one of my favorite seasons of the year here in the Gatlinburg area. Because I am blessed with the opportunity to live here in the Smoky Mountains, I have the ability to watch the wonder of creation be re-created each year. This afternoon, my wife Karen and I and our furry, four legged child Jake all took a relaxing walk on the Gatlinburg Trail, one of only two trails within the Great Smoky Mountains National Park that allows dogs (the Oconaluftee River Trail being the other) and bicycles in addition to pedestrians. It is our favorite easy National Park walk and the only one on our side of the park that Jake can enjoy so we try to go whenever we can.
This Easter Sunday afternoon, the splendid beauty of East Tennessee was evident in so many different ways. Due to a recent abundance of rain, the volume of the white water of the Little Pigeon River was spectacular as it raced over the large stalwart rocks of the river. White and pink dogwoods are just beginning to bloom as are several species of stunningly pretty wildflowers. Lemon trillium and violets are just two of the varieties that have begun to bloom along the edge of the trail. With lots of other people, some of whom we already knew and others we met for the first time, walking (and several with canines along for the excursion) it was a very social time as well.
If you haven’t ever enjoyed a wildflower hike through the Smokies this is the time of year to do it. The Gatlinburg trail is remarkably wide and will accommodate a stroller or even a wheelchair on much of the path so there are no excuses not to try it. Watching people fly fishing, enjoying the wonderful scenery, and walking their pups is a great way to spend a springtime afternoon in Gatlinburg. For those of you who prefer the outlet shopping of Sevierville and Pigeon Forge (as some in my family do) I’ll let you have it as I much prefer to be in the wonder of God’s glorious creation. Come visit us and I’ll show you the way to the Gatlinburg trail – it’s only a half mile from our Gatlinburg RE/MAX All Pro, Realtors real estate office!