Import Alliance Pt. 5- Heading East

Alright, so this part of the trip is less about cars and more about my wife and I’s anniversary portion of the trip in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. However, we were driving the Nissan during this leg of the trip as well, so I think it should still be a LITTLE interesting at least. Maybe I can save it by including TYPE X pictures from along the way, lol.

So I left Nashville SuperSpeedway at about 1:30 in the afternoon on Sunday and headed back to the hotel in Murfreesboro to pick up Alicia. It was a bit out of the way, but I wanted her to be able to chill at the pool and relax for the day, instead of toughing it out at another car event at the butt crack of dawn. I cruised back to town with this turbo IS300- pretty nice sounding car!

After I picked up Alicia, we hit the road to Pigeon Forge. It was pretty hot once again, but the excitement of heading to the cabin and starting a new leg of the trip cooled things down a bit. We passed a few cars heading home from IA along the drive, so that kept things interesting as well. It was about 3.5 hours to drive from Murfreesboro to Pigeon Forge on the East side of the state- close to the border of North Carolina. The freeway cruised through some pretty awesome mountains along the way- very cool driving scenery for sure.

I should probably get a hair cut soon… it was so hot with that mop on my head, haha.Stopped to get gas and stretch for a bit in the mountains:

I think this was passing through Knoxville if I remember correctly…

We arrived at the office for Timber Tops cabin rentals in Pigeon Forge at around 7 PM. The city of Pigeon Forge is pretty crazy- for sure one of the most tourist-oriented places I have ever seen. The main road through town was flooded with crazy traffic, jenky stores and go-cart tracks. I was happy to be at the cabin and out of the crazy traffic.

Here is the car sitting outside the office, before heading up the mountain to our cabin:

Once we got our directions and whatnot, we headed up to the cabin. The drive up was pretty nuts- about 3 mines up a mountain on a road that was fairly smooth, but not very wide. Lots of super steep hills and sharp turns. About half way up, we had to go off onto an even sketchier side road to get to the cabin. It took a couple of trips up and down the mountain to learn where all of the really bad spots were and avoid scraping the exhaust. It happened just about every trip up and down, but thankfully it was never too bad and nothing broke.

Here is the view from the back patio when we arrived- pretty cool stuff. Sunset was awesome.

After unloading the car and seeing the sunset, Alicia started unpacking inside and I went outside to take a couple snaps of the car sitting outside of the cabin. When I walked down the road to turn around and take a shot, I spotted one of the craziest things I have ever seen a couple cabins down…

It’s really hard to see since I had the kit lens on and was not trying to get killed on my anniversary, but yeah- that’s a huge blackbear chillin’ down the road. NBD…

I snapped a couple frantic and terrible shots, then ran inside to get Alicia. She got to see him too and wanted to walk down the road a little to get closer. This shot is from when we walked a bit toward him. He turned and looked at us, then peaced it into the woods. Pretty crazy experience for sure- can’t say I have ever seen an animal that big and crazy in the wild.

After the bear left, I got my quick snaps of the car and proceeded to go inside so that I did not become bear chow.

This was actually one of the few times the car was actually in the “driveway” on this trip. I managed to bash the frame rails pretty good backing out of this spot on our way down the mountain  that night. I elected to park it in the road for the rest of the trip and turn around at a cabin down the road a bit with a better driveway.

That was about it for Sunday. We were both starving and exhausted when we got the cabin all set up, so we just went into Pigeon Forge and got some Subway for dinner. What a classy anniversary! haha. We made up for the lousy anniversary dinner with a better one later in the trip, though.

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