Sunday, May 25, 2014

Tellico Blueway

We canoe-camp the Tellico Blueway - a pristine, unspoiled 11-mile paddle along the Tellico River. These stump-filled waters are too treacherous for large motorboats, but ideal for serene canoeing. 
The trip starts  as a narrow channel,  wild roses grow along the river banks, and, as the waterway gradually widens, we pass cattails and tall, light-brown limestone bluffs with gnarled cedars clinging to the rock. 

Before lighting the fire at our primitive campsite,  we watch long-jawed orb-weavers at work in the canopy.  There is no-one else within miles. Next day the river widens, with nesting  ospreys and great blue herons. 

Most surprising of all - this is Memorial Day weekend. About 800,000 people will have visited the Smokies in the month of May, but Stephine and I are alone in doing this. 

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