Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Mountains and Motorcycles

I love to ride my motorcycle. Good thing, as lately I spend a lot of time on it. And by a lot of time, I mean a 90-minute commute one way, 4 days a week. Twelve hours a week on a bike in what is right now, unpleasant heat. I have olive skin but still use a 45spf sunscreen every day. Even with sunscreen, I'm getting very dark. You'd think my skin would feel like leather, but fortunately, so far it doesn't.

One good thing about the commute is that every day I get to view some of the most awesome scenery in our entire country. I get to travel at relatively high speeds on beautifully paved, curvy and shady roads, looking at trees, kudzu vines, quaint barns, and mountains.

Here are some pictures I've taken from the bike. Yes, I did. Once in high gear, my left hand is free and it takes about a second to call up my camera phone & snap a pic. The drawback being that some of these pix aren't as detailed as I like, and a couple come nowhere NEAR capturing the beauty that is apparent to the human eye, but they'll have to do. Each picture has a caption if necessary. Enjoy!

In Sevierville, you can go to an entire store dedicated to Beef Jerky. Not kidding.

These barns have dotted the countryside in the South for as long as I can remember.

Very hard to see, sorry. But every day I ride past this, and it makes me smile. These people have put up their own street sign at their driveway, crooked of course, and it says "More R Less."

Once I get to Sevierville, I take Veterans Parkway, which goes by the back parking lots of Dollywood but also bypasses all the traffic through Sevierville & Pigeon Forge. Along the way there are places where one can see up to 5 layers of mountains. The next 3 pictures were taken on that route.

Because the forests here respire so much moisture, we have a lot of mist (humidity, LOL), which is what earned them the name "The Great Smoky Mountains." In the morning and evening, it looks like the picture above. During the day, if there is cloud cover, it looks like the pic below.

There is one hill that I top every morning, when suddenly it's no longer just foothills covered with trees, but the full scope of the Smokies, looming large in purple-gray-blue, 4x as high as the highest foothill, and surrounding me by about 120 degrees. It never fails to give me goosebumps. The two last pictures are miserable failures at capturing the breathtaking beauty but they're the best I could do...


beth pulsipher said...

Lovely area - it's been years since I've been there, but it looks just as I remembered. Take more pix! Love to see them.

:) b

better late than never said...

Very beautiful! Can't believe you can drive and take pictures at the same time. I'm just not that talented! lol