Last Thursday a sudden violent storm came through East Tennessee. Drought has plagued the area for the past few weeks. To a Gulf Coast girl, this has been different. I'm used to summer afternoon showers almost daily. On the coast it rains Spring, Summer, Winter, and Fall, so the idea of drought is very foreign to me. I've watched crops on the side of roads go from lush green to dry brown. I honestly feel for the farmers here and across all the areas experiencing this drought.
The storm started around 5:30 PM. We experienced a few brown outs, and then the power went out only to come back around 12:30 AM. I actually went to bed at 10 PM due to sheer boredom and lack of light to do anything. I did enjoy wine and great conversation with my mom on her front porch after the storm. As dark and ominous as the sky got that afternoon, the rain was relatively short and uneventful other than the power outage here in Knoxville. Over in the Great Smoky National Forrest it was a different story.
The park was closed until yesterday due to clean up crews having to clear the roads. There were also a few deaths, which I won't go into, but they were due to the weather. Friday morning when we woke to the joys of the internet we discovered the state of the park and those the storm had taken. Today my mom and I went over to the park since the road to Cades Cove was reopened. On the way up there were a lot of down trees. The one mountain face looked like it had been logged. All the trees were uprooted and strewn all over the side of the mountain highlighted by rock, brown dead leaves, and crumbling dirt.
Below are some photos. It was hard getting good photos of the damage, and I couldn't get near the mountainside that was really destroyed due to lack of sufficient pullovers, but the down trees should give you somewhat of an idea. It's sad, but sometimes I think Mother Nature has to put us in our place. We think we garden Earth, but sometimes Earth has to show us who is boss. Sadly, beautiful things get destroyed. Don't worry though, it's not Katrina bad in that area, but River Road from the Wye in Townsend to Gatlinburg is still closed. I just hope it isn't too bad.
It's hard to tell, but these are down trees across the river.
It's a little easier to see in this photo, but the impact is nothing how it is in person.
A broken tree in Cades Cove.
This was just pretty.
I'll post more photos once River Road to Gatlinburg is open. Let's hope it's just taking longer because it's a longer road. It's so beautiful I hate to think of it destroyed.