Our Trip North, Part Two

From North Carolina to Ohio

Our second big stop after Maggie Valley was Delaware, Ohio. It wasn’t until I started planning this trip that I discovered Ohio even had a town named Delaware.  It’s north of Columbus, OH and convenient to just about any place you need. Before I talk about our Ohio visit and all the wonderful things we got to see let’s look at the places we stopped at on the way.

The first mini stop was to visit the in-laws. We stayed at Riverside RV Resort in Sevierville, TN only about a 15 minute drive to their place in Kodak. Other than spending a little time with them, including a night out to the local Texas Roadhouse, we mostly hung out at home.

The second mini stop was in Frankfurt, KY. This was a last minute change from a trip to West Virginia after the floods. We just didn’t want to chance driving up there, so we changed our route. I picked Frankfurt so we could visit Louisville and Lexington. We stayed at the Elkhorn Campground.

Thoroughbred Center

The Lexington trip was to the Thoroughbred Center. It was an interesting place. We got to see the thoroughbreds during their morning training sessions. During our visit we were told that jockeys can weigh no more than 105 lbs, but trainers can weigh as much as 130 lbs. We watched several horses on the track and then learned about the education program they have on site as well as other interesting information. If you’re into horses I would recommend a visit if you’re ever in the area. Click here for additional pics.

The Thoroughbred Center

The Thoroughbred Center

Exercise track

Exercise track

Gorgeous horse in the barn

Gorgeous horse in the barn that kept making faces and showing his teeth at us.

Louisville Slugger Museum

The most entertaining trip was to the Louisville Slugger Museum. We got to tour the plant to see how bats are made. They produce bats seven days a week; although professional bats are only made Monday – Friday. It only takes 30 seconds to cut a bat from what is called a billet, which is made from either Ash or Maple wood, which is harvested out of Pennsylvania. We walked down main street to see members of the Walk of Fame.  There is so much about this place that was amazing. They had a Ripley’s Believe It Or Not that had some great items. Click here to see some of my favorites from the museum and Ripley’s.

Louisville Slugger Museum

Louisville Slugger Museum

We also spent some time getting the truck serviced as well as searching for covered bridges. There was one only a short distance from Elkhorn Campground, so we took off to see it. It was beautiful from the road, but once you got up close and walked through you could see how people had desecrated what use to be a beautiful bridge. I will never understand why people want to paint and destroy a part of history.Edit-7353

Our next stop would be the big city of Delaware, OH. We stayed at Alum Creek State Park where I discovered I really messed up when I made our reservation for an entire week. The site only included electric. Luckily it was 50amp, but we had no water. The people at check-in were of little help. Instead of telling us at check-in where we could fill our water tanks up at, they didn’t tell us anything. Hell I had to ask for a map to find our site. It wasn’t until my husband was hooking up on the outside that he discovered we had no water hookup. Once you back in a 38’ fifth wheel and level the last thing you want to do is unhook and search for water. Had we known prior to going to our site we could have filled our tanks up. We found a solution by running several water hoses to a water tap nearby. It was a big inconvenience that could have been avoided. We are looking at it as a lesson learned.

Columbus Zoo

Our first day out we went to the Columbus Zoo. It was bigger than most I’ve been to and although the temps were in the eighties, it was still an enjoyable day. Please click here to view pics from our visit.

Columbus Zoo, Ohio

Columbus Zoo, Ohio

One of the main reasons I wanted to go to Ohio was to visit Amish Country. We took a day trip up around Millersburg and saw lots of farms and even went through Nashville, OH; which looks nothing like Nashville, TN, where we use to live. It was one of those towns that if you blinked you might not even realize you had driven through it. Once we arrived in Millersburg, we did see a couple of horse and buggies as well as some Amish people. However, I think we saw more Amish at the Zoo in Columbus than in Amish Country. We ate at a place called, Olde Country Bakery. We both had a farm burger, which is just a hamburger with an egg. It was good, but the fries were even more delicious as they were fresh cut. The best part was the fresh bread. I wished I had bought two loaves.

Our final tour of Ohio was to see covered bridges. I picked several that were built in the 1800’s within an hours drive from our campground. We saw five different ones and a gorgeous church with beautiful stained glass windows. My favorite covered bridge pic below included a lovely couple that were locals taking a bike ride on a trail leading to an ice cream shop on the other end. You can find several pics from the tour by clicking here.

B&W of my favorite

B&W of my favorite

Stained glass window

Stained glass window

Beautiful church with stained glass windows

Beautiful church with stained glass windows

On Saturday we were headed to the outlet malls when my dear husband decided to stop at a couple RV dealerships. The first one didn’t seem too interested in showing us anything…..boy was that a mistake. At the second one they had the 2017 Montana’s. The 3791 model has way more storage than we’ve ever seen in a fifth wheel. We looked and looked, asked a lot of questions and told the salesman we needed to keep looking before we made a decision on whether to trade or not. By the time we left the outlet mall we both knew we wanted the new model, so we stopped back by and looked again, but I still wouldn’t agree to do anything. However, by Monday morning we were back signing papers and ordering our new house with all the options we want, so in less than 8 weeks we should be picking up our new house.

From Ohio we are headed to Niagara Falls.  A place neither of us have ever visited. From there we will travel east through Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine before we start our journey down the east coast. Hope you’ll continue to follow our journey. 

Our Trip North, Part I

The first big stop on our trip north was Maggie Valley, NC, but before we got there we had two stops to make.  The first was in Fort Benning, GA. We stayed at the MWR Campgrounds available to military personnel on the Alabama side of Fort Benning in Fort Mitchell. The name of the campground is Uchee Creek Army Campground and Marina. It was a gorgeous place to stay. We enjoyed our evenings sitting out in front of the RV watching the deer eat. They would wonder throughout the park all day and night.

In the campgrounds @ Uchee Campground, Fort Mitchell, Alabama

In the campgrounds @ Uchee Campground, Fort Mitchell, Alabama

Right at our campsite at Uchee Campground, Fort Mitchell, Alabama

Right at our campsite at Uchee Campground, Fort Mitchell, Alabama

Deer at Uchee Campground, Fort Mitchell, Alabama

Deer at Uchee Campground, Fort Mitchell, Alabama

Our site was number 404, which was right off a great parking area where we could watch the paratroopers do jump maneuvers. Being that both my husband and son were both in Fort Benning, it made this stop very emotional. My husband went through basic training and Ranger School at Fort Benning back in 1984 and my son went through basic and Airborne School here in 2009. We spent time driving through the base seeing what had changed since Greg was here 32 years ago. We saw lots of soldiers going through obstacle courses and range practice. Another highlight of the trip was going through the National Infantry Museum. Although I had toured the museum back in 2009, it was special to get to share this with my husband who had more knowledge to share of the different things to be seen. Of course anybody military related knows that you don’t go near a base without going to the PX and Commissary. This was my first time at a PX like this and boy was I surprised by all the things you could buy. 

National Infantry Museum, Columbus, GA

National Infantry Museum, Columbus, GA

National Infantry Museum, Columbus, GA

Flags at half mass, National Infantry Museum, Columbus, GA

Paratroopers doing jumps

Our last day here we sat and watched the paratroopers do several jumps. I can’t believe my son was doing jumps like this just a few short years ago. It amazes me what these soldiers go through to train to protect our freedom. Each night as we sat in the RV chilling from the day, we could hear C-130’s fly over our house. We speculated that they were doing night jumps as that is also part of the training.

Paratrooper Jump - watching within walking distance from our campsite

Paratrooper Jump – watching within walking distance from our campsite

Paratrooper Jump - watching within walking distance from our campsite

Paratrooper Jump – watching within walking distance from our campsite

Paratrooper Jump - watching within walking distance from our campsite

Paratrooper Jump – watching within walking distance from our campsite

The second stopover was in Cumming, GA at Bald Ridge Creek Lake on Lake Lanier. I had hoped we would be able to get in some fishing on the full day we had here, but unfortunately I wasn’t feeling very well, so I spent the day recuperating, so I would be more than ready for our time in Maggie Valley.

Maggie Valley

Our stay in Maggie Valley started on Friday the 15th of July having arrived around 2:30 pm. We enjoyed dinner at a local restaurant the first evening, Garrett’s. I had trout for the first time and didn’t realize it taste and looked a lot like salmon. It was great.

On Saturday we took off for Cherokee, NC to see the Oconaluftee Indian Village, the Qualla Arts and Craft Mutual, Inc. and the Museum of the Cherokee Indians. Everywhere we went we learned more and more about the way of the Cherokee. 

Of course a trip to Cherokee would not be complete without seeing waterfalls and we saw two of them. The first was Mingo Falls, which is actually in Cherokee. You have to walk .04 miles to get to it, but it is so worth it.  There is a platform to stand on and see the falls from the top, but you can also go down the mountain to get to the bottom. I wasn’t brave enough to go all the way to the bottom, but we did make our way about half way down. 

Mingo Falls, NC

Mingo Falls, NC

Mingo Falls, NC

Mingo Falls, NC

Since it was raining on our way back to Maggie Valley, we postponed seeing the second waterfall until Sunday morning as it is actually closer to Maggie Valley than Cherokee. You could hear the roar of the falls as soon as you get out of your vehicle. The walk is not that far and the beauty of the falls is grand. My pictures don’t do it justice.

Soco Falls, NC

Soco Falls, NC

Cataloochee Valley

On Sunday afternoon, with our two dogs in the backseat, we headed for Cataloochee Valley hoping to see Elk. After waiting for what seemed like all day, finally after a few rain showers the Elk started coming out of the woods. At the first location we were at we saw a total of 8, which included two babies. They were totally adorable running and playing together just like children. At one point, a mommy and baby drifted from the rest of the herd and made their way to where a couple trucks were sitting just below us. Although the baby laid down in the grass, the mommy kept drifting until she ended up crossing the road to the creek. After about 45 minutes or so of viewing these magnificent creatures we started our trek out of there. Greg was disappointed that we didn’t see any bulls, but we weren’t down the mountain yet. Sure enough we came upon another open field to several cars sitting still on the side of the road and sure enough there were 6 more cows (females) and 2 bulls (males). While Greg drove along ever so slowly I jumped on the back of the truck for better photo opportunities. I’m sure I looked crazy to the other viewers, but it was worth it for these up close pics.  In addition to the elk, we also saw twelve turkeys.

6 Cows and 2 Babies at Cataloochee Valley, NC

6 Cows and 2 Babies at Cataloochee Valley, NC

Mommy who drifted from the herd for the creek for water.

Mommy who drifted from the herd for the creek for water.

Mister Bull....Mister Bull....You look so good!!!

Mister Bull….Mister Bull….You look so good!!!

Love the rack on this Elk, Cataloochee Valley, NC

Love the rack on this Elk, Cataloochee Valley, NC

The scariest part of this trip was the ride up the side of the mountain and back down. I was totally wishing I had a brake on my side of the truck because the road was very narrow and at some points there was only one lane and you could not see around the corner, so you had to pray there was not another car coming at you.

This road is a lot smaller than it appears especially when passing another car!

This road is a lot smaller than it appears especially when passing another car!

Wheels Through Time

Our visit through Maggie Valley included a fantastic museum devoted to motorcycles called Wheels Through Time. There are over 300 bikes including a double bicycle from 1896 to motorcycles in the early 1900’s. If you’re a lover of motorcycles, especially Harley’s then you would love to tour this museum. In addition to the motorcycles, there are automobiles from the early 1900’s as well as lots of memorabilia that was very impressive to be seen.

Our last day was filled with a trip to Asheville for a trolley ride. We started at the visitor’s center and done the hop on hop off trip that included 10 stops throughout Asheville. The driver was very informative and he shared a lot of information about the city. The one thing that stood out the most was when we drove past a McDonald’s and the driver said it was the swankiest McDonald’s you would ever see as it has a piano and marble columns. Made me want to jump off the trolley and see for myself, but instead I just took his word for it.

The first leg may be over, but we still have lots of miles to cover before this 4 month adventure is over. Our next big stop will be in Ohio with a couple stops on the way. Hope you will continue to follow our trip and see where we end up.

For more photos from each of our stops click on the links below:

Uchee Creek Campground, Ft Mitchell, AL

Paratrooper Jumps, Ft Benning, GA

Ranger School, Ft. Benning, GA

National Infantry Museum, Ft Benning, GA

Cherokee, NC

Mingo Falls, NC

Soco Falls, NC

Cataloochee Valley, NC

Wheels Through Time, Maggie Valley, NC

Asheville, NC

Sightseeing in Cornersville, TN

It always amazes me what you can find in small towns. We are back in Cornersville, TN staying at Texas “T” Campground again and while we were in Florida I saw a post on their Facebook page about this small town of Lynnville, which is about 7 miles away and knew I had to check it out when we got back. Some of these little old towns can take you back to the old way of life, a time so many people have forgotten and a time I wish I had lived in as an adult.

The town of Lynnville is located off I-65, Exit 27 and has a population of 345. The total area of the town is only 0.3 square miles. For such a small town, it has a lot of character. As we made the drive we saw some beautiful homes, barns and open fields with cows and horses. When you approach town, right in the middle is the town square, which is host to the Lynnville Railroad Museum. The museum is a reproduction of a turn of the century depot. You can read the full story by clicking here which will take you to the Lynnville website, providing a multitude of information about this little town. We strolled along the street across from the depot taking in the 19th century architecture with street lamps and memorabilia from days gone by.

There are several stores along this little strip including a stitching store for quilters, which I have to go back and look through.  In addition, there is a family owned restaurant, Soda Pop Junction, which claims to have the best burgers in Tennessee. Unfortunately we had eaten lunch before driving over, so we will have to make another visit to check out these famous burgers.  According to their Facebook page, they have a great Sunday buffet that starts serving at 11:00 am.

Hopefully the pictures below will give you a small glimpse into what we saw and give you reason to check this little gem of a town out on your next visit through Tennessee.

Ticket Office

Ticket Office

Engine Car

Where the coal gets put

Where the coal is stored

Railcar

Seats in the railcar

Seats in the railcar

Caboose

Inside the caboose

Inside the caboose

Another look inside the caboose

Another view inside the caboose

Newspaper from 1906 laying on the tellers desk

Memorabila, history on the street

Memorabila, history on the street

Street view