Category Archives: Tennessee

Outdoor Activities To Add To Your Mountain Adventures

Sometimes when on vacation in the mountains I get a craving for something more than just a hike or off-roading. Perhaps I want to relax while still doing something fun and enjoying the scenery. There are so many activities that provide excitement and views without a ton of exertion on your whole body. On the opposite end of the spectrum, there are a ton of other activities that still provide great views, are different than the norm, and give you a great workout.

A few of the things I have looked into have been gondola rides, horseback riding, alpine coasters, and boat rentals. Most often if you are in mountain territory during the summer, you will be able to locate some or even all of these activities. If you want something more exciting and strenuous though, I would look into white water rafting, mountain biking, or zip-lining.

While visiting the ski towns, you can often get free gondola rides at some locations, on certain days of the week. Keystone and Breckenridge, Colorado have previously offered a day when you can ride the gondola to the top of the mountain for free. When you get to the top in Keystone you have the chance to do all kinds of fun outdoor games, have some drinks, sit and enjoy the views, or eat a meal at the restaurant. You could spend hours up there just wandering around.

While visiting Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, my husband and I, took time to do lots of different outdoor activities. We rented a pontoon and spent the day on the river. It was beautiful and we were able to enjoy some swimming as well. On the other end of the spectrum, we also went whitewater rafting, which was a blast. We rode two different alpine coasters, which are like roller coasters, but you have your own car and you control how fast you go. We tried out Goat’s On the Roof Alpine Coaster and the Smoky Mountain Alpine Coaster. I enjoyed both but I think the Smoky Mountain Alpine Coaster was my favorite, though you were able to feed goats at Goat’s On the Roof, so that makes both totally worth it in my book.

On two different trips to Colorado I went horseback riding on the mountainside. The ride was great because you have a chance to see all types of wildlife as well as get some great photo views. I recommend riding earlier in the day because there is something serene about the earlier hours meandering through the mountains.

I can’t forget to mention taking a trip to the hot springs. While in Steamboat my family decided we would spend an afternoon relaxing at Strawberry Park Hot Springs. This particular park is very family friendly and has a more natural look to it. There are several different pools all at varying temperatures. We had a great time though the place was most definitely on the packed side.

When you travel, don’t forget about all of the other amazing outdoor adventures you can partake in. There is way more to the mountains than just hiking and off-roading, although hiking and off-roading are pretty great. Try something new; you never know you may find a new activity that you just can’t resist doing over and over again in the future. To you and yours, happy hiking and exploring!

For a little extra information, please visit: http://strawberryhotsprings.com/facilities/

http://www.coloradoan.com/story/sports/outdoors/2015/01/14/visit-one-family-friendly-hot-springs/21767959/

http://www.smokymountainalpinecoaster.com/

http://thecoastertn.com/

http://www.keystoneresort.com/activities/summer-activities.aspx?page=viewall&CMPID=PPC_DEST_KEYSTONE

http://breckstables.com/

http://www.horsebackestespark.com/

 

 

 

Clingmans Dome: An Exceptional View

If you are planning a trip to the Smoky Mountains, Clingmans Dome is a must see. This particular mountain is the highest spot you can hike to in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. You can drive to the path that leads to the observation tower and then hike a half mile up to the tower. The path leading to the tower is completely paved.

Now this may seem simple, but I kid you not, even being in the best shape I had been in years, this was a tiring walk. It is a half mile walking at a consistent incline. There are several benches along the way and I used almost every one of them. Of all the hikes we did on our honeymoon, this one was the shortest and the most hard on breathing.

Not to worry, the view from the lookout is exceptional. I would do this walk again just to see that particular view. My husband and I took a nice long break just taking in our surroundings and photographing everything. The walk back down was quick and easy.

To find more information on Clingmans Dome, please visit: http://www.clingmansdome.com/

Zipping In Sevierville

Over the past few years I have found a new thrill that I greatly enjoy. If you happen to be passing through Sevierville, Tennessee and you are looking for something new and exciting, I have just the thing for you. Even as a person who is terrified of heights, I had a blast on the Wahoo Ziplines.

Since my experience with Wahoo Ziplines, I have also tried out Canopy Zip, in Idaho Springs, Colorado. These were two very different experiences. While I greatly enjoyed both, Canopy Zip definitely required more work on my part. The employees at Wahoo Ziplines actually catch and pull you in as you reach the next platform, whereas at Canopy Zip, you have to use your own hands to actually slow and stop yourself. For a newbie to zipping, this could be a little nerve racking.

Wahoo Ziplines is a great experience, because, while it is right on the edge of town, the course makes you feel like you are in the middle of a mountain forest, far from civilization. The views are wonderful and the experience has a certain freedom and tranquility to it. You feel like you are one with nature as you soar over the foliage. Each zipline is just as exciting as the previous.

All of the employees at Wahoo were very nice and attentive. Once I got myself to jump off the first platform, with some encouragement from the staff, I felt completely safe and couldn’t wait to leap from the next. The group my husband and I toured with was all pretty laid back; we had a blast and actually we would have thought about going for a second round, if it weren’t for all of the other activities we had planned.

The only downside to zipping with Wahoo had nothing to do with the actual company. I got off the course and found out I had some pretty big bruises on one of my shoulder blades. I may have given myself too much of a jolt jumping from one of the platforms. That’s just one of the hazards of zipping, but it sure didn’t stop me from doing it a second time in Idaho Springs. If I were to find myself back in Sevierville, I would definitely visit Wahoo again.

For more information on Wahoo Ziplines, or to book your own zipping adventure, please visit: http://wahooziplines.com/

A Museum Dedicated To The Man In Black

When I was young I recall my grandfather talking about Johnny Cash. He liked Cash’s music and because my grandfather liked Cash’s music, I decided I would like his music as well. I also decided that I needed to know more about Johnny Cash and at 10 years old I wrote a school paper dedicated to the Man in Black.

Over the years, my fondness for Johnny Cash has not changed. I listen to his music, I watched the movie about his life, and my husband and I toured the Johnny Cash museum in Nashville, Tennessee on our honeymoon.

The museum was a fun stop on our road trip to Sevierville. Since I love everything about Johnny Cash and his history, it was neat to see some of his actual belongings. We saw pictures of him and June Carter on their wedding day. Lots of great music played in the background. You could watch video clips of Johnny Cash and his band-mates. There was a ton of information about his life, as well as features on Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Elvis.

If you are a Johnny Cash fan, or you simply like checking out different museums dedicated to music, I would highly recommend this experience. The museum is a self-guided tour. It doesn’t take long to get through it, but you can spend as much time as you like looking around and taking photos.

For more information on the Johnny Cash Museum, please visit: http://www.johnnycashmuseum.com/