Oct 3, 2009

Fall Foliage - US-441 through the Smokies in Tennessee

Last November I decided to spend a couple of nights in Asheville, NC to explore more of the Blue Ridge Parkway and hopefully catch a glimpse of some of the fading fall foliage. Unfortunately I was a bit late to catch a lot of color in Asheville and many of the southern stretches of the parkway were closed.

Hopeful that I would still be able to catch some great scenery, I decided to take a brief drive down I-40, hopped onto US-19, and enjoyed a beautiful journey up US-441 between Cherokee, NC, and Gatlinburg, TN. It was time well spent!

Here are some photos of the gorgeous fall color that I captured along the way:

Yellow Lines, Yellow Leaves

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I also snapped a photo of this tunnel...

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... and laughed a bit when I saw this tiny snow couple along the side of the road:

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For all of you other travel enthusiasts out there who also want to plan a road trip in Eastern Tennessee or Western North Carolina to view the changing foliage, these photos were taken on November 3rd. The timing seemed to be ideal for a trip to the Smoky Mountains in Tennessee, but if you want to see some fall color in the Blue Ridge Mountains in North Carolina, I would recommend that you plan your trip a week or 2 earlier than I did.

Jan 25, 2009

Shameless Self-promotion!

I should have included some links to my Flickr and Youtube pages in my "Introduction" post, but even the smartest of men overlook things from time to time. See? That wasn't so hard! I would be most appreciative if you would check out the other pages when you have a moment.

While I am tooting my own horn, I would like to share a photo of mine that was recently featured in Flickr's Explore. For those of you that are unfamiliar with Flickr, each day Explore features photos that are deemed to be the most interesting. The photo is of the New River Gorge Bridge in Fayetteville, WV. I have traveled US-19 dozens of times traveling to and from Pennsylvania to visit family. Sadly, the bridge is quite ordinary while sitting in the driver's seat. However, if you take a break at the rest area and overlook (you can't miss the signage for the rest area on the highway) you are treated to a great view of this arch bridge.

New River Gorge Arch

Jan 18, 2009

Barcelona, New York

I first drove through Barcelona, NY nearly 10 years ago, while I was attending college in Erie, PA. In my last semester of college I started to get out and explore the area more. Little did I know that I would later become part of the roadgeek hobby and blog about one of the places I stumbled upon years later.

Barcelona is nestled along the Lake Erie shore in Chautauqua County. The community is approximately 18 miles from the Pennsylvania border on NY-5. Barcelona can also be accessed easily from I-90 by traveling only a few minutes on NY-394.

If you're able to locate Barcelona on the map, you probably assume that there's not much to see there. You would be right, because if you blink, you risk missing what makes the community so beautiful. I wasn't looking for anything in particular the first time I drove along NY-5, but I remember being amazed when I saw a gorgeous old lighthouse present itself through the foliage along the roadway. I became more enthused when I decided to pull over and found the most beautiful green-tinted sea scenes that I have ever seen.

I decided to make a repeat visit to Barcelona late this summer. Without further fanfare, I will share these photos for your viewing pleasure.

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Unfortunately, it was very overcast during my visit last year. I will also share some scans of photos I took several years ago with my 35mm that do a better job of showing all of the colors that you can enjoy when you visit Barcelona.

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Finally, I will share this video that I shot during my last visit to give you a feel of what it's like to drive along the Lake Erie shore.

Jan 10, 2009

Burgaw, North Carolina

Although it is only about a 30 minute drive from where I live, I have not given much thought to the town of Burgaw until recently. I believe that this beautiful small Carolina town is overshadowed by the Southeastern NC's beaches and the much glitzier city of Wilmington.

Burgaw lies in the middle of Pender County and is the county seat. It is approximately 30 miles north of Wilmington, and it is only minutes from I-40. The main highways sending traffic through Burgaw are US-117 and NC-53.

What jumped out and grabbed my attention the first time I drove through town was the gorgeous train depot in the middle of town. The Historical Burgaw Depot is the oldest in all of North Carolina and it houses the Pender Arts Council.

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Burgaw also has a handsome old courthouse in the center of town that also commands attention.

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How could I forget to mention the wide streets and storefronts that one would expect in a good southern small town?

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Finally, here is a video that shows you what it is like to drive through scenic Burgaw.