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About the Header Image: Idlebrook Wendy Darling Evensen, the baby of our family.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Mingus Mill - Great Smoky Mountains

Good morning,

After checking into our hotel in Cherokee, North Carolina, we went for a drive just outside of town into the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  We weren't going to let the last couple of hours of sunlight go to waste.
The leaves on the trees were thinning, but still beautiful...
...when we pulled into the empty parking lot.  We were there at the end of the day so were the only visitors.
 
 The forest canopy provided another arrangement of the colors.
In true style of our National Parks, there is a comfort stop at the edge of the parking lot.
We headed for the path to the old mill.
You could almost smell the moss on the trees.  There was a wonderful moist forest aroma in the cool air. 
The path to the mill is beside the creek that provides the water supply to run the mill.

 

Here is a short video I took of the sights and sounds as we crossed the creek.  I wish I could include the wonderful forest aromas.
 After crossing the creek, we followed the path up the hill...
...past a sign about the history of the mill.
 Since it was late afternoon and the light was fading, we passed the mill and followed the stream running through the trough built for it.  The aqua duct of stream water is in the shadow at the left side of this image.
 Turning and looking up the hill, you can follow the diverted part of the stream to the top.  That's My Honey up there.
 The water is cool and clear.
 The pioneers who built this wound it carefully through the hillside...
 ...from the top...
 ...where they had diverted the stream water into the aqua duct and down to the mill.  The engineering is simple, yet perfect to provide power to the mill.
 We turned and walked back down the path...
 ...where we found this fungus on the back side of the large tree across the water.
 We could see how the trees compensated and trunks bent through the years.  I tend to believe the biggest tree isn't shaped like this because of erosion.  It might have been bent because a larger tree fell against it when it was still very young.  The smaller tree trunks at angles are more likely angled due to erosion.
 It was getting late in the afternoon so we hurried down the hill to try to get into the mill itself before it closed for the day.
 Those are old mill stones out in front.
 Inside all the working parts are still here...
 ...but not working today because the original pipe that carried the water beneath the mill rusted through.  A new pipe has been ordered and will cost $20,000.  Wow.  We were told it will probably be repaired next Spring.
 More history of the mill...
...and the people who built the mill and worked here is inside.
 I purchased one bag each of wheat and corn meal...
...from this gentleman. He was here the last time we were here, also.  Such a nice gentleman.
 Then it was back to the parking lot and a picture of this gorgeous tree before we left.

We have been to Mingus Mill several times before.  Pictures of our visit in the Spring of 2005 are here. 

I hope you've enjoyed visiting Mingus Mill with us this time.

Very best,
Lois

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8 comments:

Marit Johanne said...

Thank you for a wonderful trip! It is interesting to see from the past how they managed to do things. And the nature is beautiful.

stringsofpurls said...

God Bless you and your family this Thanksgiving!

River Glorious said...

I like the pathway...

~*~ saskia ~*~ said...

I loved the walk together, Lois. The trees are beautiful!!
Have a happy Thanksgiving. xxxx

Kelly said...

....I love old mills and this one looks especially beautiful. All the areas are so picturesque. I want to go!!!

karen said...

Hey!! happy Thanksgiving!!

Lois Evensen said...

And, Happy Thanksgiving to you all, too!

We just love Mingus Mill. I don't remember how many times we have been here. Coming soon is a bread recipe made with flour we bought there.

Thanks, everyone, for stopping by.

Best,
Lois

Elaine said...

What a beautiful old mill. Your series of photos captured it wonderfully.