Posts Tagged With: Tennessee

So our friends bought a farm

Yesterday we went to visit Brady and Holly’s farm.  They bought the place several months ago as a weekend getaway for their family.   It’s a not so little slice of heaven in south Tennessee.  Postcard perfect.

We loaded up the truck and took the kids down to visit them with a couple of other families from the neighborhood.  Because we’re “avoid the highway whenever practical” road trippers, we took the scenic way down.  Along the way, Casey spotted a giant sign that read “Ask us about our chickens” at a local farm store.  So we turned around and asked about them.

I walked into the store and asked the first guy I saw about the chickens.  He showed me to an area that had baby chickens (or chicks as it were). They probably had 200 of them or so.  I asked how much they were and and he looked me straight in the eye and said $1.25 per.  I nearly choked on my coffee.  Never dawned on me that you can actually buy a living, breathing, chicken for 1 dollar and twenty five cents.  He asked how many I would like and I said “well, I’ll take twenty.”  As he began to quickly shuffle the chickens into a box, I am beginning to rethink my not so little house warming gift for our friends.  It’s not like we’re buying them a nice plant and a bottle of wine.  Twenty baby chickens might be a little much and, not knowing anything about the upkeep, I said “hang on a sec, let me think about this…I’ve never owned a chicken, and these aren’t for us. They are for our friends that just bought a farm.”  He said, we would have to buy a “blue light”, a coup, and a couple of other things to keep them warm, etc…. Which I thought was a little too much so I said, “do you have any older chickens that don’t require much maintenance at all.” He said, “sure, follow me around back.”

Around back there is a large coup with probably 40-50 grown chickens–both hens and roosters.  He said these didn’t require much at all – just a place to get out of the wind, some food (which he pointed at), and some fresh water.  I said, “how much are they?”  He said, $12.00.  I pointed at the largest, most beautiful rooster of the bunch and asked, “how much is that one?”  He said, “well that one’s $12.00 too.”


I am really shocked now….  You can actually buy a fully grown, 2.5 foot tall, beautiful rooster, for $12.00.  I said, “I’ll take two.”  Since they are flock animals and all…

So he grabs a big muskie net and scoops up a couple of chickens (we settled on hens), puts them in a bag (the white one above) and ties it off with a snap tie.  This is a plastic bag and we have 25 more miles to go before we arrive at the farm. I am thinking about the horror-stricken faces of the kids when we arrive with our house warming gift – a couple of suffocated chickens in a plastic bag.  I said, “are they going to be able to breath in there.”  He said, “how far do you have to go still?”  I said, “about 30 minutes probably.”  He said, “well I will cut some breathing holes in the bag then.”

So we load up the chickens in the truck (which is a Suburban – with 3 kids and 3 adults) and take off down the road.

We arrive at the farm and the kids freaked when I cut open the bag and the chickens ran out.  They immediately built a chicken fort with sticks and firewood.  This one of Brady and Holly’s 4 kids, Parker.
The chickens were a hit.  Brady and Holly are going to make some wonderful memories with their family at this place – it’s middle of nowhere awesome.  Here is a picture of Meredith and Casey walking on top of the hill.
Here is a picture of their house – cozy, woodsie, and awesome.
Here’s a picture of Casey walking on the bluff above the valley.
Here’s a picture of Natalie with her homemade chicken coup.
Here is a picture of Jacob with “Hen-Peck” (yep, they named the chickens)
Here’s a picture of the sunset yesterday–looking west from Brady and Holly’s porch.
It was a great day with great friends and family.
Categories: Camping, Family, Hiking, nature | Tags: , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Savage Gulf Tennessee

Last fall we went hiking and camping in Savage Gulf Tennessee for a couple of days with our family and neighbors.  Savage Gulf is 15,590-acre natural area located in the Cumberland Plateau.  Over thousands and thousands of years various creeks and rivers have carved a huge gorge (or gulf as we call it in the south) through sandstone and limestone.  The result–an absolutely stunning area that is basically untouched nature.  Several old growth forests in the gulf have never been harvested so they are full of  oaks, hickories, maples, yellow poplars, hemlocks, ash, and other huge old men standing tall and proud.

Near our camping area, maybe .75 miles round trip on a loop from the ranger station, is Greeter Falls (see below).


One of the things I really like about this area is the isolation.  Even though the hike in to the campsite is only about .5 miles (the folks with babies know this is plenty far), there hasn’t been anyone else there any time we’ve gone.  Additionally, because there are virtually no towns for miles in this area, the light pollution is nil resulting in stars so crisp and bright it feels like you reach out and grab them.


After getting our fire going, we made dinner while the kids played in the area around camp.  We tried to get to bed kind of early because we intended to hike the great stone door trail the following morning.  Our friend Amy is below and made the eggs in the morning and I made some camp bacon over the open fire.


On the hike in Erin and our friend Jennifer chit chatted along with Meredith trailing behind.


Incredible sunset on our way out from the Gulf lookout.


We didn’t get the hike in that we wanted to because we had a ton of young kids with us that had a tough time getting down the stone door.  Next time we’ll take the slightly older ones only so we get to the bottom of the gulf, but we had an awesome time with friends and family.

Categories: Family, Hiking | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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