Elk Viewing in the Great Smokey Mountains (Catalochee Valley)

Today we decided to go see if we could spot any elk in Catalochee Valley, as we had been told by one of the roadside visitor centers that the park had recently released Elk in this area as an experiment.  We took the scenic route through the park, so some of these roadside images came from locations that I cannot remember– we stopped whenever we saw something worth stopping for.  The road up the mountain near Catalochee Valley is amazingly steep, and I was certainly glad that I was the one driving and not having to watch someone else to drive!

Laurel Falls – Smoky Mountain National Park

Not wanting to wake up early, Laurel Falls made a  great choice to visit because it would be there any time of day, unlike the deer that force you to wake up early (uck!). We hiked various trails today, but I don’t have a whole lot of photos because I’m not all that crazy about carrying my camera across bodies of water where I might slip in.

Cades Cove

No sleeping in today– we had heard about deer viewing in Cades Cove so we got there early and headed down the dirt road that runs through the park, stopping only along the areas where we thought we might see wildlife.  Later during the day we went back and took photos and looked around the old preserved buildings, but those don’t interest me a whole lot.  We saw several deer along the way, but surprisingly enough, the best shot I got was right near the visitor center where 3 deer were grazing right out in the open!