Knoxville, TN – Knoxville Botanical Gardens and Arboretum

These privately owned and operated gardens lie on 47 acres right outside of downtown Knoxville. There is no fee to enjoy the gardens. They have different gardens and walking trails.

You park in a big gravel parking lot across the road from the visitors center. The visitors center was closed today. When we started our walk, we were followed by the resident cat, Sage. There is another cat named Roy, but we never did see him.

After walking around in front of the visitors center, we headed around to the left and walked around the stone terrace. This was mostly greenery. We then walked down an alley behind the visitors center (and there is a residence too) where there was more greenery and a few flowers. We then walked back around the house and over to the left enjoyed the flowers in what they call Row Garden. We then walked through to Martha H Ashe Garden. On this side of the road, our last visit was to the stone greenhouse.

We then crossed the road and walked across the gravel parking area and started down that path. When we came to the fork, we headed to the right. We came to an old building / area that was the former site of C B Howell Nursery.

After enjoying this area, we then then backtracked and when we arrived back where we went originally to the right, we continued straight ahead. We first came upon the Bamboo Forest. This was pretty cool. Nothing but bamboos. They had a trail cut through the forest. It’s not a huge forest, but was pretty cool. And let me tell you, it smelled really good in the forest. We then took a couple of rights and went by the Viburnum Cottage. We then took a couple more right hand turns and finished this area on the Dogwood Nature Trail. We then backtracked back through the Bamboo Forest, and back to the car.

Here are a few photos from today. As usual, I’m not a flower expert, so not all photos will have descriptions.

Address for GPS: 2743 Wimpole Ave, Knoxville, TN

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Blowing Rock, NC – Moses Cone Memorial Park (Flat Top Mountain Carriage Trail)

Wanted to go to a couple of particular stores in Boone, NC today, so did our walk at Moses Cone. The trail that we took was the Flat Top Mountain Carriage Trail. This is a very easy 5.6 mile round trip trail.

We started out at the parking area at Moses Cone Manor. When you are facing the trail from the parking area, you head down the hill, and off to the left. You first go through a tunnel that goes under the Blue Ridge Parkway. You will then come to a fork. You will head to the right (if you want to go to Trout Lake, you take the left fork). You pass by cows grazing on rolling hills. Normally the cows are near the trail, but today they were way out in the field. You then head into the woods for a bit. You then come out into a clearing. Eventually to the left you will come to a road that cuts to the left that will take you to the Moses Cone Cemetery. At this point, you’ve gone about a mile. You continue on and when you go around the curve to the left, you’ll probably see people going up or coming down a hill. You will also see a couple of paths where people take shortcuts. Of course it’s best to stay on the designated trail. Once you go around the next curve and start up the hill, you will begin the switchbacks to the lookout tower. Watch on your right. There are a couple of spots with good views of Blowing Rock. The first you really have to watch for. There is a path off to the right that will take you onto a rock that overlooks Blowing Rock. The next one is very obvious. You will come around the curve on a switchback and there will be a large area with great views. The rest of the way, you are going through the woods. You never see the tower until you are almost right on it.

We hung out around the tower for a bit. Didn’t go all the way to the top. Kind of freaks me out when those things have just a tiny railing and they start shaking. Once they start shaking, that’s usually when I stop my trek. We then headed back down and went into Boone to do our shopping.

Here are a few photos from today. For some reason, all of my photos didn’t download to the Amazon Cloud Drive. Very disappointing. But, here are a few.

The location of Moses Cone Memorial Park (manor house) is on the Blue Ridge Parkway, milepost 294.

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Hickory Tree, TN – TVA Day Use Area

This is a trail (that doesn’t seem to have an official name), that my son took us to a couple of years ago. We needed something close to home today, so since it had been a couple of years, decided to walk around this area today. Man, was it ever hot and humid. Except around the river. It was nice and cool where the river is so cold.

So, all that the sign at the trailhead says, is that it’s a TVA Day Use Area. I think that mostly people that fish use this area. If you keep straight on the trail, you will eventually arrive at the river. To make our walk longer, there is a road that bears off to the right after you walk through an opening where you can see a piece of Holston Mountain to your right. We took that road. You pass by a swampy area. It then curves off to the left and ends up at the river. This road isn’t used as a vehicle road any longer. You can tell when you arrive at the river that people used to put their boats in the river at this location. After we took some photos on the river we continued our walk. When we arrived where we could turn left and head back to the car, we kept on going straight. The trail gets thinner. There are little paths off to the right where you can walk down to the river. Eventually you curve to the left and head back towards the parking area. On your right, is some nice farmland. You eventually come to that opening again. The trail through there required a little bushwacking. You then see a little farm on your right. You curve to the left one more time and finally arrive back at the parking area.

I can’t find anything at all, on the internet about this area. So, since I’m bad about writing down how far we walked, I’m thinking that we may have walked a little over a mile.

Here are some photos from that area. Run your cursor over each for a brief description. I do have a couple of photos at the end that are not hike related. Have a photo of my son and one of the twins. Eli. Sawyer must have been asleep or I would have had photos. I also have a photo of the planes flying over our house as they were getting ready to fly over the Bristol International Raceway before the start of the race.

Directions: I’m going to start you out in Hickory Tree at the intersection of Big Springs Rd and Hickory Tree Rd (Hwy 44). Head north on Hwy 44 like you’re heading towards South Holston Dam. When you come to the 4-way stop sign at the intersection where Hwy 44 goes left, you are going to turn right onto River Bend Rd. You will eventually come to a fork. Continue to the right. This is still River Bend Rd. At the next fork, you will bear to the left. Watch closely for the entrance to the day use area.

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Johnson City, TN – Tweetsie Trail (Osborne Rd to Hwy 321 / 67)

Yes, I’m behind on my posts. And yes, these photos were taken before the trail was completed. We walk it. I post it anyway no matter how old / out of date the photos are.

This time we didn’t park at Osborne Rd. There was a church parking lot that we could have parked at nearby Osborne Rd, but we would have had to have walked down the road a little and then hit the trail. We parked further towards Johnson City in a big church parking lot. Since our last walk on the Tweetsie Trail ended at Osborne Rd, when we parked at the church, we backtracked and walked to Osborne Rd, then turned around and walked to Hwy 321 / 67.

It was only about 2 weeks until the official opening of the trail. We noticed today that the mileage was being posted. Some of the Tweetsie Trail warning signs at road crossing had gone up. On this section of the trail, you walk some behind homes, and some of the trail is amongst the trees. One of the bridges was finished and it wasn’t the normal boards across the bridge. This one bridge was made of stone. Pretty cool. The last road crossing before you get to Hwy 321 / 67 stated to not enter, but of course people were doing so, so we did too. But, when we arrived at Hwy 321 / 67, there were people crossing the bridge that wasn’t 100% completed. We chose not to. We did not want to cross a bridge over a 4 lane highway that wasn’t completed.

Here are a few photos from today. Run your cursor over each for a brief description. Since I’m not sure if we should have parked in this church parking lot, I think I’ll refrain from posting that address.

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Blue Ridge Parkway – Price Lake (Milepost 297)

In my previous post, you see that we started our day at Flat Rock Trail at milepost 308. After we finished our relatively short walk there, we drove up to Price Lake.

We normally park at the parking area by the bridge. Since that parking area is kind of small, we attempted to find a parking space near where you rent canoes, and we were successful.

To get to to the trailhead, we headed north and a trail went through the woods. It passed an amphitheatre. After a little ways through the woods, you continued through a campground. You again went briefly through the woods and came out to the small parking area. You walk across the bridge, and then the trailhead is on your right.

Today was a nice comfortable walk. There were a few signs of spring. We also noticed since the last time that we were there, that there have been some improvements made on the back end of the trail before you loop around and head back towards the parking area. There were some new boardwalks. It’s no longer challening when you loop around to start your trek back towards the car.

We’ve walked this trail a few times, but only once since I’ve started posting our walks / hikes. Here is my previous post from this trail.

https://rangerannette.wordpress.com/2013/05/26/blue-ridge-parkway-price-lake-milepost-297/

Here are a few photos from today. Steve took some more fur baby photos this past week, so of course had to include a good photo of our baby, Chloe. Run your cursor over each photo for a brief description.

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Blue Ridge Parkway – Flat Rock Trail (Milepost 308)

Our plan today was to go to our normal picnic area at the Flat Rock Trail trailhead, and then head on over to Price Lake and complete the 2 mile round trip walk around the lake. We had our picnic at the Flat Rock Trail trailhead, but then I realized that family had never walked this trail with us. I suggested before we head over to Price Lake that we take this short loop trail. All agreed.

Won’t talk much about the trail since I’ve previously posted a couple of walks on this trail. Here are my 2 previous posts.

https://rangerannette.wordpress.com/2013/08/23/blue-ridge-parkway-flat-rock-trail-milepost-308/

https://rangerannette.wordpress.com/2013/10/06/blue-ridge-parkway-flat-rock-trail-milepost-308-2/

Here are a few photos from today. Run your cursor over each for a brief description.

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Bristol, TN – Signs of Fall in Steele Creek Park

This is a very small post because it was a little too rainy to keep the cameras out. For other better posts of the park, search the internet by “ranger annette steele creek park”.

But, even though it was drizzling today, we still wanted to get some walking in. It was one of those rains that doesn’t get you too wet, but is just enough to be irritating. We were going to visit the twins today, so headed over to Steele Creek Park to get in a 4 mile round trip walk.

We threw on our rain gear and put our cameras in my backpack in hopes that the drizzle would stop and we could get the cameras out at some point. The rain eventually did stop, but we were almost done with our walk by then. Got a few pictures. It was only August, but we were already seeing some trees that were no longer green. I’m looking forward to the Fall season. Love getting out taking photos during the Fall, and during the Spring.

Today after our walk, we visited the twins, and of course I have to provide a picture of each of them. Steve was out this week too taking a bunch of photos of our fur baby Chloe, out in the yard. So, included her in the few photos that I am posting today.

Address to Rooster Front parking for GPS – 1160 Vance Drive, Bristol, TN.

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Roan Mountain, TN – Dave Miller Farmstead

Actually, today I was not along on this excursion. I had to work. We found out that family was going to go to Roan Mountain to do a little hiking, so instead of Steve sitting around the house watching me work, he decided to go with them. They went to the top of the mountain and the weather was bad up there, so they went back down the mountain and decided to walk the Dave Miller Farmstead area.

I’ve posted our excursions to the farmstead a couple of times before. One of my posts very briefly talks about the history. Here are my previous 2 posts.

https://rangerannette.wordpress.com/2013/06/22/roan-mountain-tn-dave-miller-farmstead/

https://rangerannette.wordpress.com/2013/06/23/roan-mountain-tn-dave-miller-farmstead-2/

Based on the photos that he took, it looks like they did the normal walk. Walked through the farmstead area, and then went across the road and walked the gravel road to the overlook and family cemetery. At the overlook, you have a view of the Roan Highlands.

Here are a few of Steve’s photos from today. As normal, I’m not naming the flower photos. I think flowers are pretty, but I’m just not familiar at all with the names.

Directions: From Elizabethton, TN, drive approximately 17 miles to the town of Roan Mountain. Take a right onto Hwy 143. Drive approximately 1 1/2 miles, and you will see the sign where you will veer off to the right to the farmstead. It’s a steep and winding road, and you’ll think you’re never going to arrive. Be patient. It doesn’t take too long. You’ll arrive and park in a gravel parking area above the farmstead.

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