This time last month Cody and I were in Tennessee living in a tent. Yes you heard that right. For a whole week in June we slept in a tent… and it actually wasn’t bad. This weeks post is going to be all about that week: what we did, where we went, and how we survived living in a tent for a week in the summer with a dog.
Originally we wanted to spend our anniversary in Texas on Lake Travis, but due to the pandemic we decided it was best to go to Tennessee. The weather was going to be perfect for camping, so we looked around for different camp sites to set up camp at. We finally landed on Lookout Mountain KOA. It was reasonably priced, nice, and it wasn’t booked up yet! Although this campground isn’t actually in Tennessee, it’s right on the state line.
Our Campground was alot nicer than we expected. We had showers and multiple bathrooms. Our campsite was also more closed off from everyone else and every tent site has water and electricity. The woman in the campground store was so nice. We went in every day for ice and by the second day she knew us and would always ask what adventures we had gone on that day and how our stay was.
We ate at a few restaurants, but we also cooked at our campsite using our Ozark Trail camping stove. We cooked spagetti, garlic bread, eggs, toast, and sausage on our stove. It worked so well and helped us expand our food options since we were there for a week. (We knew hot dogs over the fire wouldn’t cut it every night)
On the night of our anniversary, we decided to go on a date. There was a local pizza restaurant and winery pretty close to our camp site. The Lookout Winery exceded our expectations. They are family owned and make real italian, wood fired pizzas. They even import their ingredients from Italy. The owners wife was talking to us about their pizzas and wine. We did a wine tasting and found out that all of their wines are homemade in the restaurant and made with no chemicals. I didn’t know this before, but most wines have chemicals in them to preserve them and those chemicals give you hangovers. So, the owner actually told us that with their wines you don’t get any hangovers. We did the sampling deal for all 15 wines (we shared and it was 1 oz. of each flavor) and they gave us a sheet to rate each wine. We spent the evening enjoying our wine and pizza and watching the sunset on the lake. It was so beautiful and a great way for us to celebrate. I highly recommend this restaurant to anyone in/visiting the area around Chattanooga . They really had a passion for what they do and a kindness like no other toward their customers.
We also stopped for lunch at the Terminal Brew House in Downtown Chattanooga . We had Zoey with us, so we had to sit outside in the heat, but their patio was so beautiful and shaded us from the hot sun. We shared a baked chicken with peach salsa and a flight of beer. One of my favorite things to do when I visit a brewery is to get a flight of beer, mainly because I love drinking out of the little glasses, but also because it gives you an opportunity to try different beers and find one you like. At this particular brewery, they had a flight with six beers that offered one of each of their beers. Overall our food and service was amazing. Everyone was so nice and accommodating. Our waiter even brought out a bowl of water for Zoey to stay cool.
Though the food was beyond what we expected to eat while camping, our main goal for this trip was to explore outdoors. We visited a lot of different swimming holes and went white water rafting. There are alot of different companies that you can go with if you choose to go white water rafting. We chose Quest Expeditions. There was absolutely no social distancing involved, so if you are worried about that I would probobly look into other activities. We were loaded on a bud and then paired off for our rafts. The guide taught us how to use our paddles, what all of the different terms meant (because times are tough when your boat is about to flip!) ,and showed us what to do if we went over board. The rapids weren’t too crazy. They were rough enough to have fun and create a challenge, but not too rough.(To give you an example, there were kids out there in rafts) Our trip took about an hour and a half to go all the way down the river and no one from our group was thrown overboard.
We visited two different swimming holes that involved hiking. This first swimming hole that we visited was ‘The Blue Hole’ in Soddy Daisy. We weren’t sure where we were going, we just started hiking. We hiked for about two miles before we got to the swimming hole.(There are so many different swimming holes along the way if two miles is a long way for you. We just had a goal to get to The Blue Hole.) The hiked involved crossing a stream with a heavy current. (Also not a great place to go if you easy get hurt.) Once we got to the swimming hole, it was worth the hike. The hike weaned a lot of people out, so there weren’t a tone of people there, the water was crystal clear, and there was a diving spot where people jumped off a cliff.
The other swimming hole we went to was Foster Falls. It was a much shorter hike , but it was mostly down hill and steep. I almost fell twice ( luckily I caught myself. ) it isn’t the best place to visit if you have no coordination and you are walking a dog. The swimming hole had a huge waterfall and clear water, but it was packed. There were so many people there that it was hard to find a spot to keep our things. Luckily everyone there was pretty chill.
Overall, I loved our trip to Tennessee. The weather was great the whole time and there were so many things to do in the area (even with the riots and pandemic happening.) If you ever find yourself in the area, make sure to stop by some of these places and let me know what you think! Thanks for reading along !