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Old 06-11-2015, 10:29 PM   #11
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"Unto These Hills" is an outdoor play of the Cherokee Indians and the leadings up to the "Trail of Tears". I went as a kid with my parents and again as an adult (it has changed in the last 10 years). I have yet to take my own children, but plan to.

Drive the BRP as far as Pisgah and back. This is the best part of the entire drive IMO.
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Old 06-11-2015, 10:49 PM   #12
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We always head in to Pigeon Forge for a fried Apple pie (or three) at the Apple Barn. And while I could live without it, my wife enjoys some of the outlet shops and the Christmas Place.
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Old 06-12-2015, 12:55 PM   #13
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Thanks for the input. We are planning on bicycling the Cades Cove loop (closed to motorized vehicles on Wednesday morning) and will be driving part of the Cherohala skyway on the way to Indian Boundary campground.

Interesting to here about the bears! We are in a hybrid so we will need to be diligent with what we keep in the camper. I understand that the refrigerator is not a problem.
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Old 06-12-2015, 01:47 PM   #14
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We just got back from that area last Saturday - spent a week exploring the back roads, etc. our toad is a Jeep, so we went a lot of places that I wouldn't even consider taking a trailer or RV. Saw four bears around Cade's Cove, missed the elk at Cataloosee (sp?). Lots of turkey everywhere, several deer and a couple of not so shy coyotes. Got caught in an unbelievable hail storm (Google hailstorm in Pigeon a Forge last week). Weather there was fantastic temperature wise. We planned to do the Balsam drive the day the storms got really bad (by the Masonic marker) but didn't feel it was safe due to flash flooding. Have a great time!
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Old 06-12-2015, 02:34 PM   #15
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Pancake Pantry in Gatlinburg. They don't take credit cards.
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Old 06-12-2015, 02:46 PM   #16
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If you're going to bicycle the Cades Cove loop get there early!!
It opens at dawn. It's a pretty good way around and the earlier you are,
the less crowded and the more wildlife you'll likely see.
Also open Saturday morning dawn till 10 AM I believe for bikes and walkers
only.
After 10 they open the gates to cars and you don't want to compete with
cars. The road is too narrow.
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Old 06-12-2015, 03:00 PM   #17
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We're heading to Cherokee NC next weekend for some fly fishing. Plenty of places in GSMNP to wet a line if that is your thing. The Blue Ridge Parkway starts in Cherokee and you'll often see elk roaming the field by the entrance.
Now that we have a camper, the Smokies are definitely a place I want to learn more about. This thread is very educational. Thanks to all that have contributed.
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Old 06-12-2015, 03:22 PM   #18
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The Old Mill in Pigeon Forge is the one place that we always go at least once when we are there. There are huge servings of food so you might want to share. The desserts are wonderful.
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Old 07-02-2015, 02:04 PM   #19
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Just got back from the trip to the Smokies and wanted to offer the following observations. Cades Cove campground was great! I took a spare battery but we made it through our three day stay there with the Group 24 battery that came with the camper. I was still in the green based on hydrometer readings on the last day. We were very frugal with electricity because I wasn't sure how the Roo 19 would do.

I was a little surprised that most of the generators in use were the contractor variety that were loud! I only saw 1 Honda inverter but would recommend a quiet inverter generator just for the sake of your neighbors.

The Cades Cove Loop was fun but strenuous by bicycle. There are some good hills and it was hot the morning we were there. We enjoyed staying in the Park and got out to Townsend and Gatlinburg. Townsend seemed like a nice place to be if you wanted to stay outside the park. We got absolutely no cell service from Verizon while in the park except on top of Clingmans Dome. We saw bears and owls while we were there.

I will do a couple of other post on other campsite we stayed along the way when I get a chance.
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Old 07-02-2015, 02:09 PM   #20
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The most important thing to see in the Smokeys is the scenery. SLOW DOWN, STOP and get out and look at God's handiwork! It is breathtaking.
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