It’s currently 6 degrees and above the clouds. Yesterday’s high was 33 degrees, with an overnight low of 8. We received 2” inches of snow, with a layer of freezing rain beneath.
US Hwy 441/ Newfound Gap Rd from Gatlinburg TN to Cherokee NC is temporarily closed due to snow and ice.
Cherokee Orchard Road with access to the Rainbow Falls Trailhead is also closed due to snow and ice. Follow the link below for updates on road closures.
The morning started moody. I ground fresh coffee and began the brewing process. My spirits lifted with the earthy aroma. Looking outside, I knew it would be a cold one, but with 2” fresh inches of snow, I couldn’t resist.
Trudging through the snow, I arrived at my sunrise locale. Small gaps in the clouds gave way to the incredible color above. I waited. The little doorways to heaven became more frequent. Purple hues enveloped the mountain. The sun continued to rise. Faint hints of purple remained, the golden light started taking over. I yelled instinctively. Overwhelmed, everywhere I looked presented a new scene to witness.
On my way back to the lodge, I couldn’t help but take the untouched detour to Cliff Tops. I stayed out much longer than I probably should have, considering the single digit temperatures and wind. Something about the combination of light, clouds, and mountains make me forget all sense of time. The moments take over. The sun rose higher. The scene was changing again…
I moved as slow as possible back toward the lodge.