Wright Brothers National Memorial!

It was breathtaking to stand next to this replica of the plane that actually flew!
This is one of my very favorite places to visit in North Carolina!

North Carolina is a wonderful state and one of the highlights for me was going to the Wright Brothers National Memorial. I loved seeing where the first working airplane actually flew!!

This very famous photo shows their actual first flight!
Wilbur and Orville would practice gliding from this hill

It was amazing to learn about the Wright brothers’ creativity in approaching an unbelievable complex problem. Figuring out the wing design, propeller design, engine, and steering were simply astounding to me. They were insightful and “out of the box” thinkers. I truly marvel at their achievements! Their first successful flight was on December 17, 1903. They were the first to have powered flight with a “heavier-than-air machine!” It is truly a remarkable achievement!

It is astounding that these guys funded, designed, and tested how to build and fly an airplane!
The plane would start on the wooden runway track and it lifted off where the large stone sits. The 4 marking stones in the distance and the length of the first 4 flights. Each was a bit longer. Truly amazing!
I am amazed at the complexity of their achievement!

Great Smoky Mountains National Park!

Beautiful trees are everywhere!

It is difficult to summarize the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in a few words because it is so large and involves so many features. There are rivers running many places. There is intense growth of thick trees. There are mountains that are quite steep. It overlaps into both Tennessee and North Carolina. There is wildlife. There is hiking. There are roads. There are people.

I loved listening to the water running
This is Cataract Falls. Not too mighty right now.

I now understand why so many people visit Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It is beautiful! Every trail head I saw was overflowing with cars for people wanting to hike. The campground sites were all full. The parking areas along the main road were filled with cars of people wanting to see such beautiful views. It is hard to describe the grandeur because the views are so wide in scope. I thoroughly enjoyed my time today!!

The views are beautiful! The trees are so dense!
I loved a!ll the variations in green trees
Beautiful vistas in all directions!
It is interesting to have a national park sit right on the border of two states.

Asheville, North Carolina

Charlene and Ed

We had a wonderful time trying this flight of beers!

In Gaffney, I finished the two day course “Camp Freightliner” and we had the yearly oil change done on the motorhome. It was fun meeting a group of motorhome owners, but my head was sore learning all about the Freightliner chassis. Today, we left Gaffney, South Carolina and drove to Asheville, North Carolina. Asheville is a wonderful community in western North Carolina. We crossed the Blue Ridge Parkway just before we entered Asheville.


Ed brewery

This was a great brewery!

Asheville has really fun “feel” to it. It is nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Appalachia. Neither Charlene nor I have ever been in this part of North Carolina. As we looked at attractions in the area, we discovered that there are several breweries and one distillery in Asheville. There is a great water in Asheville and that has attracted a number of breweries. There is also a strong art community.


The oldest brewery in the area is the Highland Brewing Company and we had an absolutely wonderful time going on a tour of the brewery. We bought a flight of their most common beers. Their Gaelic Ale was our favorite!


Another interesting feature about Asheville is that the Biltmore was built here by the Vanderbilt family. It is 8,000 acres! Unfortunately, it was after 4:00 pm once we made it to the Biltmore, so we decided to not buy tickets ($50 per person). We will have to save that for another visit. The Biltmore in Asheville is called “America’s largest home” because it has 250 rooms! There is a huge mansion and garden along with a winery and two hotels. It was quite impressive, especially considering they started building it in 1895.