A few weeks ago, Caroline and I made a quick trip to Nashville for the weekend. She was attending a baby shower Saturday morning, which left me free to wander around taking pictures. So I did some research (by Googling "Waterfalls near Nashville") and found a few neat places that were fairly close by. The only problem was that the weather was predicted to be bright and sunny over the weekend. So in order to get a good shot of the waterfalls with the best light, I'd have to get there right around sunrise. Which meant leaving Nashville at a horribly early hour.
So at 4 A.M. I sleepily drove away from our friends house and headed east into the hills. The sky began to brighten with the upcoming sunrise, turning from a deep black to an inky blue. But I had timed it just right, I was going to be getting to the waterfall (Burgess Falls) right on time.
However, when I got to Burgess Falls State Park I realized the fatal flaw in my plan. The park was closed, and the road gated shut. In all of my diligent research on Google, I failed to see that the park opens at 8 AM. It was only 5:30, and the sun was about to rise. I didn't feel like sitting around for all that time only to get there when the falls were in direct sunlight. What to do?
There is another park nearby, with a huge waterfall there. It's about an hour away, and if I hurried there was a small chance I could get a few pictures there before the sun got too high. So I rushed towards Fall Creek Falls State Park, trying not to speed too fast down the winding country roads.
I got to the park and rushed to the overlook at Fall Creek Falls. The sun was rising, but hadn't yet reached the waterfall. The light was hitting the trees surrounding it, and the mist floating up from the falls.
At 256 feet tall, Fall Creek Falls is the highest free-flowing waterfall east of the Rockies. Which is another fact that I neglected to see when doing my waterfall research in the area. Whoops. The other waterfall here is the 250 foot Coon Creek Falls, which plunges into the same pool as Fall Creek Falls.
This is a great park, and it's filled with waterfalls. The sun was high enough now that the light was harsh, so I couldn't get too many pictures. This is the last shot I was able to get, of the creek flowing below a bluff.
I started to head back towards Nashville, but decided to make another stop at Burgess Falls State Park. The light would be rough, but after making the drive there I still wanted to see it. I got to the park and made the short hike to the falls, passing by several smaller falls before hitting Burgess Falls. At 130 feet, it's a massive waterfall.
I started heading back towards Nashville, passing by several old barns.
After making it back into Nashville, we were able to do some sightseeing. This is a view of downtown, from the Shelby Street Bridge over the Cumberland River.
I headed home on Sunday, and made a pitstop in Memphis. On the left is the Pyramid, which is said to be the 6th largest pyramid in the world (the other bigger pyramids are in Egypt, and Las Vegas). There wasn't time on this visit, but on the way through Memphis on Friday night we did stop at one of the very best burger joints around, Huey's.