Tuesday, May 17, 2016

May 16 and 17

Monday, May 16, 2016

Little River Canyon National Preserve is an 11 mile scenic drive with a 45 ft. high waterfall.  Though the water level is low right now, winter rains allow expert “whitewater paddlers (to) test their skills in the rapids”.  We enjoyed walking on the huge rocks that had long flat “steps”, making it easy to climb.  It was so good to discover such a beautiful area so close to home.

In the afternoon, we traveled to Russell Cave National Monument.  This site has been excavated by both the Smithsonian and National Geographic archeologist.  Cane baskets and stone mortar and pestle were found that document that the cave has been inhabited for 10,000 years.  How amazing is that!

After checking with the park Ranger, we parked just outside the park gate for the night.  Roger transmitted there for a couple of hours .  Before we went to bed we went outside to take down the antenna and were happily surprised to see lightning bugs flying around the sky.  We smiled as we each remembered catching them when we were children, putting them in jars to better enjoy their light.

Tuesday May 17, 2016

Today we drove to the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park, just south of the Tennessee/Georgia state line.  It is the first Military Park established by the US Congress and honors the lives of both the Union and Confederate soldiers who fought in this Civil War battle.  It is considered the campaign that was the “Death Knell of the Confederacy”.

The park has numerous monuments to individual military battalions, of both the north and south.  The movie in the visitor’s center was very impressive, as it depicted actual people with quotes from letters of soldiers who were actually on the battlefield.  The number of lost lives was so phenomenal that it is hard to believe.  But I try to find the positive in their sacrifice.  Our county survived the huge conflict of the Civil War.  It might have destroyed the nation, but people struggled to rebuild.  The United States has gone forward and continues to prosper.        

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