The Smokies Trip 2016 | The beginning

October 22 to November 6, 2016

A flight from MN to the eastern land of Maryland for a grand adventure from Maryland to Townsend, Tennessee. The adventure starred myself and the wonderful Jen (of JL Gould Photography) as we meandered south from Maryland.

Ren Fest – Maryland style. I’m rocking the red hat, while Jen looks fabulous in her purple hair. We saw costumes that did not fit the realm of Renaissance… Santa Claus (x2) and various random others all gathered in a medieval esq setting akin to the cantina in Star Wars. The weather was brisk (late October will do that) and Maryland’s Ren Fest is a different experience than the Minnesota Ren Fest. Felt more like I was in the woods at the Maryland one.


Townsend (the dog) – spunky as a new pup. We met 3 years ago (visit About A Dog Photography to see her from then), now she is the queen of the yard. Glad she’s been working on the some posing…

The rulers of the roost inside the house are a quad set of cats. Denarius, Lasciel, Tavi and Grimalkin. Two black cats, two orange cats. The differences slim…. esp in the case of Denarius & Lasciel. Lasciel is a food lover, and it shows on that robust body of his. He also has a bigger patch of white on his chest.  His brother Denarius is sleek and trim. Of the oranges, Tavi stayed hidden, but his brother Grimalkin (Grim for short) made an appearance and pretended to be a scary cat because I was a new person in his space.

The next morning Jen & I were off and adventuring towards the land of Tennessee. Over the Bay Bridge to a town called The Plains in Virginia. We popped into Front Porch after spotting some very sassy coffee mugs in the window. From there we explored The Plains, found a backroad to an old mill that was only open on weekends then continued on the interstate.

A pause at Cobbler Mountain Cellars where we met the shop dog, sampled some wines and delighted in some wonderful ciders (if you didn’t know, I am a cider lover!). A lovely day for a pause in a quaint, hidden away vineyard/orchard.

Onward to the Blue Ridge Parkway that spans from Virginia into North Carolina ending just before the border of Tennessee. It boasted wonderful views of the mountains, a casual drive and the fleeting glimpse of a bobcat in the minutes just before darkness.