Our favorite place in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is Cades Cove. The beautiful valley is surrounded by mountains and is accessible by a one-way auto loop. Throughout the 11-mile trip, you will see wildlife and numerous historic buildings, including a grist mill, barns, churches, and log homes. It was a challenge to pick a brief sampling of pictures for you, to give you a taste and feel for this treasured setting. If you ever get to visit, be prepared to take your time and get out of your car along the route to explore and enjoy the natural beauty.
This is a view from the southern part of the cove loop road.
This is a view from the northern part of the cove loop road. The tiny little dots in the valley are deer.
Hey, look! I just got closer to one of these beauties!
And this one was so tame, I got within about 15 feet of it while it grazed!
And we also got to see quite a few wild turkeys (the fowl kind; not the tourists, LOL).
On the bank of Forge Creek is the old John Cable grist mill, constructed in 1868. Features include a wooden overshot water wheel, millrace, and flume. This is the only grist mill that remains in the park.
Adjacent to the mill is the Becky Cable house, the first frame house in the cove. Built in 1879, it was once used as a general store.
One of the popular stops along the route is the Tipton Place homestead, built in the 1880s. How many stories can this back porch tell?
A beautiful double-cantilever barn is right across the lane from the Tipton home.