Sunday, August 7, 2016

We Went Horseback Riding in the Smoky Mountains Again

Nadia on her Horse
After we unloaded the car and had everything we needed for three days in the cabin. Nadia and I got back in the car and headed over to the Sugarland Visitor Center, which is located at the entrance to the Great Smoky Mountains.  Across the street a ways is the Sugarland Riding Stables.

A Stream
Horseback Riding along a Stream
We headed over there and I opted to go for the 90-minute horseback ride, since we had such a great time last year.  The view was so pretty with the running water.  There were four of us and the guide.  I was at the end again.  This time I brought my camera, but they gave me a horse that likes to trot.  (If I had known this ahead of time, I would have left my camera so I could hold on)  Every five minutes, it felt like my horse was running to catch up. 

The trail went high up into the mountains.  Below is a photo of the view of Gatlinburg.

View of Gatlinburg from the Mountains
View of Gatlinburg from the Mountains
Now, we were having a lot of fun until Nadia's horse bucked and she fell off onto the ground.  I don't think she was holding on at the time.  I sat on my horse in horror, but the guide came over right away.  Nadia was ok, she just had a bruised knee.  Please Note: This was no fault at all of the horseback riding stables. I have ridden with them three different times.  Horses are animals and there are risks involved.  The horse just got spooked by something.  The guide brought Nadia and her horse up to the front with him.  It ended up being the high-light of her trip; falling off her horse.  I can tell you it was not mine.  I was ready to get off my horse and walk beside it.  It was a good wake up call.  I should have made Nadia wear a helmet as well, but she did not want too.  I did not push because we had never had a problem before.  From now on no matter what, she is wearing a helmet.

The staff was very nice and helpful.  The view was lovely and we would go back there again.  Also, they take your picture before and after the ride and you have an option of buying the picture cd.  We did.

After we were done horseback riding we went back to the visitor center and looked through the  museum.  Then we headed back to the cabin to make some hamburgers over the campfire.

building and cooking over my first campfire
My First Campfire
This was my first time making my own campfire.  I started off with just Charcoal in the fire pit, an hour later I started to add the wood.  I did not do well.  It took about 2 hours for my hamburgers to cook and the Lipton noodles seemed to take an hour more.  By the time I was done doing the dishes, it was already 10:00 p.m. We saw lightning bugs and a lot of stars.  Nadia and I  each carried a lantern as we made our way to the comfort station to get our showers. No lines.  Everything was very clean and we made it back to the cabin safely.  I had my bear spray ready to use for any safety reason inside the cabin along with my hot dog fork.  A Mom has got to be prepared you know :) 

My first campfire dinner #camping
My First Campfire Dinner
We survived our first day camping and horseback riding in the mountains. 

If you would like to read more about our journey across the Blue Ridge Parkway,

Below is my newest book that is available on Amazon that was written about this road trip along with some added bonuses

Below is my first travel guide