Honeymoon Story

May, 1985


Storms Never Last - Lyrics by Waylon Jennings
Performed by Dr. Hook

 

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May 1, 1985

We spent the day at our campsite in Waid's Ferry Campground in the Sumter National Forest. We read and lay in the sun and took a short hike. Saw one black snake. Beautiful sunny day.

May 2, 1985

We broke camp at 8:30 am and drove to Union, South Carolina, stopped at a Ranger Station. We drove around looking for the Hunt Camp Scenic Campground, rainy, and had lunch there (no picnic table). We then drove on to Parson Mountain Lake Campground, rainy, but nice campground with a small lake. We saw a family of Canadian Geese all in a row, five babies. There was only one other camper from DeLand, Florida and he told us all about Abbyville and its Civil War history. Rained hard during the night.

 May 3, 1985

No rain this morning. We broke camp and headed for Walhalla. We set up camp at Burrell's Ford Campground in the Sumter National Forest and hiked to Kings Creek Waterfall (1/2 mile). We camped on Chattooga River in a walk in site (used backpacks) and met Tom and Sally Tetting and their daughter, Miriah.

May 4, 1985

We hiked 4 miles one way down the river (south) past Big Falls. Beautiful river with wild iris, trillium, and ladies slipper blooming. We shared  a nice campfire with the Tetting's. The campground was full of weekenders.

May 5, 1985

We hiked another 4 miles one way up river (north) to Ellicott Rock where the borders of North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia meet. We lay out in the middle of the river on a big rock. We took showers at Cherry Hill Campground nearby and shared another campfire with the Tetting's. The campground cleared out of all weekend campers.  

May 6, 1985

We broke camp and headed for Highlands, North Carolina via Highway 28. Winding mountain roads passed some waterfalls on highway 64. (Bridal Veil Falls and Dry Falls) We camped in Chattahoochee National Forest on Lake Conasuaga Loop B. It was a long 16 mile drive over dusty climbing dirt road to get there. There were no other campers and it had a nice lake with a swim area. We hiked 2 miles to Grassy Mountain Tower. It was hazy, but the view was still beautiful. Lots of Turkey Vultures on the tower.

May 7, 1985

We drove to Chattanooga, Tennessee and toured the tourist trap known as Ruby Falls, then drove northeast to Cherokee National Forest. We had a flat tire and did our laundry in Etowah, Tennessee. 17 miles east of Tellico Plains, we camped at Spivey Cove Campground. The road followed the beautiful Tellico River Branch. It rained during the night.

May 8, 1985

It was a rainy morning, but Beth managed pancakes and two cups of coffee. We broke camp at 9:30 am and drove back through Tellico Plains up highway 68 to Madisonville then to Marysville and on to Smokey Mountain National Park. We stopped in Gatlinburg for a new fuel container for the stove and camped at Cades Cove Campground. Rainy, and not a pretty campsite with the sites all snug together. The rain finally stopped for suppertime and we took a drive along Cades Cove Loop. We saw many deer and woodchucks, a raccoon up a tree. It was a beautiful meadow with mountains all around.

May 9, 1985

It was rainy, we waited till noon then broke camp after unpacking our loaded backpacks, too wet to hike. We drove to Big Creek Primitive Campground on the northeast side of the park and camped on roaring creek in a secluded spot (only one other camper). Michael amazed Beth by building a great fire with wet wood. Our neighbor, Linda, joined us for awhile.

May 10, 1985

We were up at 8:00 am, still no sun, but not raining. We hiked 10 miles round trip up an old railroad bed that followed Big Creek upstream. It was a nice hike, easy grade, but there were no bears :( There was a slight drizzle in the afternoon. Michael built another fire and we heated water in a pail for baths. The sun finally broke through about 5:00 pm!

May 11, 1985

We hit the Mt Sterling trailhead at 8:30 am. A strenuous 12 mile hike round trip with a steady climb all the way to the top where an old fire tower stood. A nice view in partly cloudy skies. There were a few other hikers. Our bodies ached when we finished. We had a fire and more rain. A new neighbor, Bob, shared our fire.

May 12, 1985

We broke camp about 10:30 am and headed for Cataloochee Campground, the sun was shining enough to dry the tent. We walked to the end of the road and back, about 6 miles round trip. It rained in the afternoon, the tent was wet again. We took an evening drive to the end of the road (Twice) and saw lots of deer. One herd of about 8 frolicking in the meadow. They seemed to be glad the rain had stopped.

May 13, 1985

We hung our stuff on a line to dry in the sun and went on a hike. We took part of Boogerman Loop and returned via Fork Ridge Trail to Cataloochee road. We saw several deer on the trail, two bird nests on trailside (one with eggs and one with babies), and two rust colored grouse. It rained before we made it back to camp, 10-1/2 miles round trip. We took another late afternoon drive to see deer.

May 14, 1985

We broke camp at 11:00am after waiting for sunshine to dry our tent. It didn't, so we left anyway. We drove to Ashville, North Carolina and got groceries. We took the beautiful Blue Ridge Parkway north and stopped at Blowing Rock for mail (we had our mail forwarded ahead of where we planned on being in the neighborhood of next). We then headed west into Tennessee and camped at Cardens Bluff Campground in the Cherokee National Forest on Lake Watauga. It was one of the nicest campgrounds we've had. The tent faced out on the lake sitting on a terraced lot. We had a campfire.

May 15, 1985
We broke camp and drove north to Mt. Rogers National Recreation Area and had lunch at Beartree Campground. Nice lake for fishing and swimming. We then drove on to highway 81 west to Pennington Gap and camped at Cave Springs Campground in the Jefferson National Forest. No other campers. We took showers in medium cold water. There were owls and a strange sound during the night, probably some kind of hawk.
May 16, 1985
We broke camp at 8:15 and drove to Cumberland Gap National Historic Park. The skies were clear until we were half way up Ridge Trail via Lewis Hollow Trail to Gibson Campground (4 miles). It cleared up while we set up camp and built a fire. Picked up lots of litter. It rained in the late afternoon and on and off during chilly night. Some leaks in the tent. It was an uncomfortable semi-sleepless night.

May 17, 1985

We broke camp at 7:15 and had a miserable wet hike back down, feet squishy, rain gear useless (thru away). We drove into Middleboro, Kentucky for breakfast at Burger King. and did laundry. We drove in mostly rain to Mammoth Cave and camped at Houchens Ferry Primitive Campground.

May 18, 1985

We took a disappointing half day (10:40 - 3:00) Mammoth Cave tour. The only highlight of the 4 mile cave trail was Frozen Niagara. We returned to camp in the afternoon to find that our neighbors had grown to a group of ten couples with kids and dogs. It was a boring afternoon and noisy night with neighbors partying. No sleep. Finally had to scream at them and then they shut-up.

May 19, 1985

The babies were up at 6:00 am. We were up and gone by 7:00 am. We drove west on Highway 62 through Kentucky. Nice sunshine. We stopped in Poplar Bluff, Missouri for groceries and camped at Big Spring Campground on the Current River National Scenic River way. It was a nice quiet campground with hardly any people and a beautiful moving river. We saw one black snake on a walk.

May 20, 1985

We explored Big Spring and the surrounding area, then moved our camp to Round Springs Campground. We were sitting on the edge of the river watching canoers come in, when Hunt and Robin White rowed in with a bunch of their friends in three canoes. (Michael had not seen them for several years) While rowing down the Current River they had encountered water moccasins, one of which the first canoe ran over and it reared its head and attacked the second canoe (it was pissed). A person in the second canoe flipped the snake with a paddle into the third canoe where it left holes in shirts but was flung out successfully without leaving anyone bit.

They also told of rowing passed an accident where they could see a person trapped underwater against a log by the swift current and people trying to retrieve the body.

We moved our camp to Pine Crest Campground to join the Robin and Hunt group where we ate and played poker. It rained most of the night. 

May 21, 1985

We broke camp and headed for Competition and Pauline's place in the country, stopping at Paddy Creek Campground in the Mark Twain National Forest for lunch. 

May 22 thru 26, 1985

We stayed in the country. Michael drove to Kansas City on the 24th and picked up Ryan and Jennifer. On the 26th, Gladys came up from Anderson, Missouri and we decorated the graves of loved ones in the cemetery.

May 27, 1985 thru June 8, 1985

Pauline stayed in the country and the rest of us drove to her home in Independence, Missouri. We took Ryan to school on Tuesday the 28th. On the 29th, we picked Ryan up at school and went to a Red Roof Inn picnic at Lake Jacomo. Thursday the 30th was Ryan’s last day of school and we picked him up at 3:40 in the afternoon. On Saturday the 1st of June, we took Ryan home to his Mothers for the weekend and went to lunch at the Stouffer’s and played Hearts. We had the Bloom's over to Pauline’s for a cook-out. Sunday the 2nd was Pentecost Sunday at the Blue Ridge Presbyterian Church in Raytown where red balloons were tied to the pews. After the service, we launched the balloons southward. Michael picked Ryan up at 7:00 pm. On Monday the 3rd, Michael took Ryan home at 4:00 for a Soccer Picnic then went to a movie (James Bond - "A View To A Kill") and picked Ryan back up at 8:00. The soccer picnic had been rained-out. On Wednesday the 5th of June we went to a Forsyth Travel Library picnic at Sue Marshall’s. The 6th, we went to a cook-out at the Ramsey’s. On Friday the 7th of June, Michael took Ryan to the drive-in to see the "Goonies" and Pauline arrived from the country at 10:30 pm. On the 8th, we had dinner at the Blooms.

(Continued)

 

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