One of my goals on our recent trip back to the Smokies was to visit some roads and trails I'd never visited before. It was fairly surprising to me, when I started really looking at the places I'd been in my many trips back to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GSMNP), how little of the park I'd actually seen. While I've been there a number of times, most of the time we kept going back to the same places. I intended to rectify such short-sightedness on this recent trip.
One of the places I really wanted to check out was the Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail, a circuitous driving trail very close to Gatlinburg, that meanders through a very pretty old growth hemlock forest.
Just before the start of the one-way driving trail we were confronted with the Noah "Bud" Ogle cabin. I knew about this cabin before I got there because my good friend and talented photographer David Jones had visited this place last fall and brought back a beautiful picture of the Ogle barn set against the changing leaves. David printed his photo large and entered this summer in our annual West Texas Photographic Society Annual Exhibit at Abilene's Center for Contemporary Arts. David has agreed to let me show you his great image in this post, so here 'tis:
Well, I'd been studying David's image for a month before we went on vacation and wanted to capture something to complement it. This photograph of the Ogle cabin, which sits just in front of the barn, is what I came back with:
The challenge here, other than finding a compelling composition, was to choose the moment of capture when there were no other tourists in the photograph, which simply requires a bit of patience.
Once we finished at the cabin, we started on the Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail. After we finished, we learned that the park's estimate is that it takes about an hour to drive. My family nearly fell over laughing when they heard that because it took us closer to three. I told them that's what they get for having a photographer in the family. One of the photographs on my shot list for this trip was a few nice images of streams and waterfalls. The Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail a beautiful little stream (Roaring Fork) running through much of it, and the trail was replete with places to pull off and make images. Along with the one at the top, here's another one of my favorites:
More to come . . . .