Wheels up at 5 AM. We were first in line at Cade's Cove which opened at 7 AM. This is the iconic location that everyone comes to when they go to the Smokies. Here we shot a grist mill- the mill-tender (my own word) posed for us through a window. Later on some Amish-looking women came out of the mill. Also shot some interesting cabins.
Next stop was Tremont for lunch and then up into the mountains for a creekside shoot. I was sitting in the car-my new friend Gerold's Range Rover, I took this shot through the sunroof with my iPhone.
After resting back at the hotel for an hour and a half we went back into the mountains for a sunset shoot. Shooting was curtailed because of rain but I think I got some wide angle shots I liked. On the ride down the mountain there were a bunch of cars parked by the road. People were taking pics of a bear near the roadside. Back in the parking lot participants said there were several cubs with her. Apparently you're not supposed to come within 150 feet of a bear. It is illegal and there are fines involved. People here were at about 15 feet. Usually rangers show up quickly at bear sitings-called by good samaritans. The reason for the rule is not safety,-it's so the behavior of the bears is not changed. They don't want them to get too used to people and become tame. I plan to inquire where the bears shelter from the weather,-caves?