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Heading to the Great Smoky Mountains

We departed Cheatham Annex on Thursday, October 5 en route to the Great Smoky Mountains. Our first stop was Rudds Creek Park, an Army Corps of Engineers Campground located on John H. Kerr Reservoir, a 50,000-acre lake that extends 39 miles up the wooded, cove-studded shoreline of the Roanoke River in Virginia and North Carolina. Rudd's Creek Campground is open April 1 - October 31. The Day Use Park, located across Hwy 58, is open year-around. Kerr Reservoir, also known as Buggs Island Lake, was created with the construction of the John H. Kerr Dam in 1952. Its 800 miles of wooded shoreline stretch across six counties in two states and offer countless recreation opportunities for visitors. The camping fee with a National Park Pass is half price and only $17 a night; an incredible deal for a water and electric site in this beautiful venue!

We are spending three days here relaxing and reading. I am practicing on my new guitar and we might even try out our fly fishing gear. The lake shore is just below our campsite so it is an ideal place to practice casting.

I need to do some online CE work related CFI training (fire investigation re-certification) and Coast Guard Auxiliary core training. This is a good place to get it done. There is good wifi connectivity in the complex and the campground is quiet, for the most part, with limited traffic on the road near our site.

Friday evening we drove into the town of Boydton, Virginia to attend a local wine and beer social at their historic local tavern and inn. It was an opportunity to mingle with the locals and hear about their community. Karen and I did a self-guided tour of this historic facility established in 1790. This part of Virginia was apparently a big tobacco growing region back in the day and many of the exhibits reflected that fact. It is amazing to think how much our society has changed with regards to the whole subject of tobacco production and smoking tobacco in general. We sat and listened to some local music, talked with a few people and drank some wine for about an hour before heading back to the campground.

Saturday was very restful and relaxing. We enjoyed sleeping in, had toasted bagels with cream cheese, smoked salmon and capers for breakfast then walked our loop to check out some options for a future return trip. We found some amazing sites right on the lake that were huge; this is a definite do-over location for sure.

All in all, this was one of the best places we've stayed and we would love to come back again. It truly is a beautiful getaway location for this time of year and probably the spring time as well.

Sunday was our check out day. Check out was at 2:00pm so we had a relaxing morning to break camp before getting on the road again. Our next stop would be an overnight only stop at the Cracker Barrel Old Country Store in Salisbury, North Carolina about 3 hours to the southwest. From there we head to Greer, South Carolina for a three night stay at the GSP RV Park. We are looking forward to visiting with some long-time friends from California who have moved to South Carolina.


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