Late Summer Journey, Day 8, Sept. 6

Welcome to Wednesday another wet dreary day!

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As I said yesterday, there are only a limited number of restaurants open in the hotel . So, when we checked out, I asked the bellman, who was a local, where we should go for breakfast. He said Peter’s Pancakes for sure. So Peter’s it was and it was delicious! The breakfasts were almost too large for the average person.

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On the way to Peter’s, we passed a place selling fresh boiled peanuts which I love. I stopped to buy some.

Next to the boiled peanut shack was a typical Cherokee tourist trap selling trinkets and souveniers. They also had some pretty nifty welded metal art. The guy manning the register looked to be about 35 and must have been scalped at one time because he had the worst toupee I’ve ever seen. I was afraid to ask to take his picture.

The little stream that ran through the park which is in the middle of town had swollen into a river because of last nights storms.

Heading north we entered the Great Smoky Mountain National Park which is where the southern entrance to the Blue Ridge Parky is located.

Almost as soon as we entered the parkway we went through two tunnels.

It turns out that there are 17 tunnels between Cherokee and Asheville, NC. The tunnels turned out giving me a respite from the relentless clouds. There were very few times when we could see anything from overlooks. The clouds we dense enough that we could do no more than 20-30 mph maximum most of the time. One stretch where we could only do 10 mph a fallen tree blocked my lane and I was able to stop and not collide with the tree.

Can you see the cyclist in the fog?

When we reached the highest point on the Blue Ridge Parkway we could finally see past the overlook.

Once back on the parkway, we saw these unique wild flowers growing on the rocks. They appear to be “air plants”.

There were also “water rocks” all along the parkway.

As soon as we started going down in elevation from the summit, we were back in the clouds. This is what we were able to see from this overlook where “self flushing”toilets were located.

 

It was almost to Asheville before we broke out of the clouds for good.

Our last stop was the visitors center at the parkways Asheville headquarters.

We arrived in Valdese around 4 pm where we had Chinese food for dinner and will spend the night here at my sisters. Tomorrow, we head back to Blowing Rock to complete our last leg of the Blue Ridge from Blowing Rock to Asheville.

Babs Says: Clouds look so beautiful when flying over them or sitting on the ground looking up at them. Too bad they are so ugly and spooky when driving through them.

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