I take two routes to Western North Carolina: Interstate 40 or U.S. 441 through Great Smoky
Mountains National Park. I chose the more scenic route through the park last week. I stopped at the Oconaluftee River Trail and Mountain Farm Museum behind the Oconaluftee Visitors Center. It’s a tranquil spot and a good place for a break before venturing into Cherokee and Bryson City, N.C.
The Mountain Farm Museum is a collection of farm buildings assembled from locations throughout the park. You can check out a log farmhouse, apple house, barn, spring house, and a working blacksmith shop to get a sense of how families may have lived a century ago. It really makes you forget the road for a bit and gives you a chance to stretch out and walk.