Before I had been to Gatlinburg three times on business, but never had time to enjoy the city. One of my bucket list items is to ride a ski lift in this city. No other lift in any other city is on my list.
Gatlinburg is a tourist delight. There are shops and attractions of every description for adults in town. For kids of all ages, there is a ski lift ride to Ober Gatlinburg, a large amusement part on top of the mountain. Dollywood in Pigeon Forge is just over he hill on US-321. In town there are restaurants to tantalize every taste bud you have, and some taste buds you didn’t know you have. There are roller coasters, ATV rides, an upside down building, mini golf, a water park, and Ripley’s Aquarium of the Rockies. We go to Ripley’s Believe It Or Not. I choose to say ‘Not’ for every exhibit. But I was astounded and believe every one.
My bucket list target is the original lift, Gatlinburg Skylift. It starts on the main drag in town (US-441) near the Gatlinburg Space Needle, suspends you over Cliff Branch creek and the Christ in the Smokies Museum and Gardens, up the mountain and through the trees. The upper station is a shop and an indoor and patio café overlooking the city of Gatlinburg as it nestles in its narrow valley. The food is fair, the view spectacular.
But the star of this attraction is the glass bridge to the snack bar. While the bridge deck is only 120 feet above the ground, when I step onto the glass deck in the middle of the span, my survival instinct screams, “It’s 120 MILES deep! Step Back! NOW!” I look up, take the next step and cross the glass section. If the entire span had been glass, my instinct may have prevailed. I’m going to test it on that bridge at the Grand Canyon.
It can happen, with His help.