Tractors Across The USA – July 16th to July 19th 2009
Day 20: July 16th KENTUCKY TO TENNESSEE
We were indeed fortunate this morning to be invited to have breakfast at the Chaney’s Dairy Barn, a family run business which is the brainchild of Carl and Debra Chaney. Carl’s family have farmed this diary property for generations, but only in recent years has he ventured into the Dairy Barn with Debra making copious quantities of many different flavours of ice cream in their well appointed kitchens and selling many locally produced items in a charming setting with lots of family and historical photos and mementos. The breakfast was delicious and we are learning that our ‘scones’ are their ‘biscuits’ and our ‘biscuits’ are their ‘cookies’! If we all stay in the USA long enough, we will become experts in the correct terminology.
Bowling Green is proud to house the ‘National Corvette Museum’, so the opportunity to visit this facility could not be missed. The Corvette is America’s only True Sports Car and what a wonderful display of Corvettes are amassed there, from the first designs in the 50’s to today’s streamlined beauties. All these cars are shown in elegant settings with many scenes depicting various stages in the development of this motor vehicle. Also on display are the driving suits and paraphernalia of some of the great racing drivers in American history. We were sad to leave Linda and Darrell and the welcoming people of Bowling Green – we have made some really good friendships during this trek.
Then it was down the 31W again to Nashville and we booked into an RV park at Goodlettsville. Eight of the crew took advantage of a short break in the itinerary to travel to Memphis, while the others made various arrangements to take in the sights. Those who remained at the RV park enjoyed a meal and entertainment by Country and Western singer, Paul Hill, entertaining in the RV Park.
Days 21 and 22: July 17th to 18th
GROUP 1 NASHVILLE TO CHATTANOOGA
During the short break, George, Anne, Ron and Kerry spent two enjoyable days travelling to and from Chattanooga. This was at the suggestion of Linda Dickerson from Bowling Green when we said we were looking for somewhere interesting to go that would not involve too much travelling. The trip down the Interstate in Ron and Kerry’s RV was a change from the lesser roads usually travelled with the tractors and made for a fairly quick trip.
First up was a visit to the Tennessee Aquarium, an enormous series of exhibits of river and ocean life, all viewed through different levels in two very cleverly designed buildings. Added to this was a great butterfly garden with many exotic, brightly coloured butterflies which were not bashful about landing on our clothing, or even on Anne’s ear!
Then, after a night spent at the local RV Park, it was off early to a triple ticketed tourism package – Ruby Falls, the Incline Railway and Rock City Gardens. Each of these attractions was very different, but all were thoroughly enjoyable. The Ruby Falls tour took us down in an elevator 260 feet below the ground, then through an underground cave to the absolutely spectacular underground waterfall. Coloured lighting added to the effect of this brilliant cascade of water. Then after a quick look at the view from Lookout Mountain, it was off to the steepest train trip in the USA – up and down the mountain, with views down to the Chattanooga area. Third on the ticket was the Rock City Gardens and what a fantastic place to visit. The natural rock of the area has been added to with lush greenery and walkways, culminating with a visit to ‘Lovers’ Leap’, a truly majestic rock from the top of which seven states of the USA are visible. A huge waterfall flows through the rock face – a really picturesque place. We all thoroughly enjoyed the experiences.
Then it was a quick visit to Nashville on the way back to the RV Park and we found the city to be interesting and exciting. Obviously this city has much to offer to the traveller, but after two hectic days we were satisfied with a walk down the main street.
We all voted this to have been an extremely entertaining an enlightening couple of days.
Day 23 : July 19 TENNESSEE TO KENTUCKY
The tractors pulled out of the RV Park at Goodlettsville at 8.30am heading for the Land Between the Lakes in Kentucky. Unfortunately all the RV parks along this popular strip were booked out or belonged to the National Parks which have rules which make it difficult to book a group only one day in advance. The park we eventually pulled into was at Grand Rivers and it was disappointing that we had missed most of the campsites on the water.
A drive to the nearby Kentucky Dam however was an unexpected bonus – we were just in time to see barge being guided into a loch, a very interesting experience. The Dam is enormous and power is provided through a power generating station. An interesting sight was a cement circle built up in the water to enable fishermen to avoid the very fast flowing waters. The catches appeared quite sizable – fish nearly a foot long were being thrown back unless they were skipjack with are used as bait for larger fish.
A group BBQ finished off the day.