NOTE: IN ORDER TO BETTER SEE PHOTOS IN THEIR FULL 1600 PX. RESOLUTION, VIEW THEM IN THE ALBUM FORMAT BY CLICKING ON THE LEAD PHOTO OR ANY PHOTO IN THE POST. This is especially true for landscape shots. Thanks to Mark for the idea of adding this alert so the photos can be seen at their best!

Friday, October 17, 2014

A Little Further Along

The road to the Middle Prong Trailhead is located near the "Y" at the Townsend entrance to the park.  It starts out paved but shortly after it passes the Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont it becomes a well maintained gravel road.

There are pullouts located along the way for you to make room for vehicles coming from the other direction, or to take advantage of the views of the river or even to do some fishing.

Middle Prong of the Little River

lichens and leaves

Every time I hopped back in the truck I checked the clock to see how many minutes were flying away.  It was just so hard to resist the river's raging beauty and I decided that if that meant my hike got cut short so be it.

Click on the photos to see them in fullscreen!

There were two one lane bridges to cross.  At the first one when I got out to take a photograph I scared up a Blue Heron...

After crossing the bridge the views were even more stunning.

I mean, I was standing there thinking "no one is going to believe it when I say I didn't edit these photos AT ALL".

The photo below is my favorite.  I just had to slide down the steep bank a few feet for a great unobstructed shot featuring that gorgeous boulder in the foreground.

Finally I arrived at the parking lot and thought I'd better park Wayne's big old truck in a way to make it easy for me to get out just in case more people showed up.

But since no one was around yet I scooted around underneath the bridge from the parking lot to the trailhead.  I don't know how kids resist it when they come hiking with their parents!

You know, I actually brought my big tripod with me out of the truck but it was too awkward and heavy to move up and down the nearly vertical incline alone.  More about the tripod in my next post.

I even hopped out onto those rocks in the picture below to try to see if I had a good shot going upstream, but no luck.  I did slip a little and get my pants leg wet.  Good thing I was wearing my new Lowa waterproof boots.  I bought them especially for hiking in the Smokies and when I get out to Oregon and Colorado someday.  They are so soft and comfy yet super supportive and the water beaded right up on them when they got submerged.  My feet and socks stayed completely dry!

Once I felt like I got all the shots I was going to get I made my way back up to the trailhead. I'll tell you about the trail itself in the next post.

If you click on the photo you can even see my wet pants leg!

We made it home yesterday evening safe and sound and after traveling in the rain all day Wednesday we were thankful the weather was okay coming home through Indiana and Illinois.  Our son Cory is doing fine and Wayne drove him out to the towing company today to deal with what remains of his car.  I'm sure that's going to be difficult for him, he loved that car.  Thanks for all your comments and support, I really appreciate it!

Cory's not the only one with car troubles, his best friend who also works at the same pizza place had his car stop working yesterday so I gave him my car to use for the next 3 days while his is getting fixed.  Now I'm without wheels too!  I'm hoping Cory gets a car this weekend, but buying a used car isn't always that quick and easy, right?  He won't be driving for a few weeks anyway with the fractured clavicle so there's no rush.  Have a great weekend, Everybody, hit some trails for me!


  1. Glad to hear Cory is doing well. What caused the accident? Such a shame if he loved his car. Now these pictures look like postcards. You were in the absolutely right place at the absolutely right time. Can't see how a tripod could have made these any better. How about a pic of those boots? I'm always looking for the next good hikers.

  2. I hope I never have or never will take the fact for granted that this is my home and I can be at that spot on Middle Prong in 40 minutes from my driveway. Seeing it through the eyes of others makes me even more grateful! It really is beautiful. It is a perfect autumn day here and I am so incredibly sorry that we aren't on the trail as we had planned. But so grateful Cory is ok and you made it safely home!

    1. Your home is gorgeous, you know how jealous I am!

  3. I felt like I was walking there with you. Wonderful posts!