Snowy Range Pass

Snowy Range Pass

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Russel Cave National Monument

21 Oct 2019

Leaving our Harvest Host campsite, we continued south and decided to visit the Russel CaveNational Monument.  It is in rural northern Alabama and our GPS took us right to it.  It is a very small national site with some hiking trials and an exhibit area explaining the importance of the site.

It is a short and easy walk to the cave site and if you have visited a lot of caves it will not immediately impress you.  What makes this place so special is the fact that humans lived at this site for over 10,000 years. This time frame is the oldest known human occupation in the southeast United States.  The cave has been mapped for over 7 miles and is still being actively studied.  Knowing that humans have lived here for such a long period of time is what makes it so impressive.

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Harvest Host camping

20 Oct 2019

HarvestHosts is a site that contains nearly 1000-member host locations, where RV’s camp for free, generally for an overnight stay. We first joined a few years ago but never had an occasion to use it.  Since then, the number of hosts has grown and there is now an app that allows you to find sites quickly. It contains information including limitations and what you can expect.  Most are dry camping locations. There is no charge to stay, but the guidelines of the project encourage the campers to visit the hosts and purchase some products.  This is not required but appreciated.

We stopped at the Northfield Vineyards in Sparta, TN.  It is in a rural area and was once an active farm.  We spent time talking to the owner and purchased some wine and very good local cheese.
We enjoyed a quiet evening overlooking the farm fields and watching the neighbors watch us.  We took the warning sign concerning the mules seriously.  

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Then came the horses

19 Oct 2019

Early Saturday morning horse trailers started to enter the grounds.  Soon it was a steady stream with many parking just around the corner from our motorhome.  Clearly there was going to be some kind of event taking place soon.  Since we were parked right on top of one of the outdoor arenas, we were in a good spot to see all the action.

We learned that the events would start at 2pm.  We walked around and were amazed at how many trailers, horses and people were involved. 

Just as the event was about to begin, it started clouding up and started to rain.  The event continued despite the weather.

Halley was not a big fan of the many horses.

Monday, November 18, 2019

A Redneck tour and Cracker Barrel

17 Oct 2019

While at the rally, we did two tours arranged for by the rally hosting club.  The first was a Redneck tour of Nashville by bus.  We did see a few places that we have not visited before and it proved to be a very entertaining outing.  Our self-proclaimed Redneck tour guide was hilarious with constant redneck lore and insights on Nashville.  During the tour he managed to grill every passenger on the bus.  It was truly one of those things where you must have been there to get it.  It was a fun outing.

The second tour was completely different but very interesting also. One of the great things about attending these rallies is having folks with local knowledge arrange for tours you would likely not know about yourself.  This was one of those events.   We visited the warehouse that holds all the decorations that go into new Cracker Barrel restaurants and updates or changes for existing restaurants.  The small team of employees are responsible for planning each location’s theme and all items that will go into the layout.   We had a great discussion with the daily operations manager on how they find the items and how they plan the design for each location.  He made it sound like a fun job. 

The tour of the materials in stock was amazing just for the sheer volume of items on hand.  This link has a very nice write-up on the warehouse.