Sunday, October 11, 2015
Bye Bye Watson Mill Bridge, Hello Newport Tennessee I-40 KOA
On Friday morning, we packed up early and bid farewell to Watson Mill Bridge State Park. One last ride through that beautiful old bridge, and we were off towards another adventure. Our next stop would be in Newport, Tennessee, but not before 198 miles of twisting mountain roads passed under our wheels. Going through those mountains was a lot of fun for me, but not so much for Dodge. He is definitely a flat land vehicle, and not at all geared for climbing hills. He struggled considerably, and I could feel his transmission downshifting into lower gear as he pulled me and Gary and all of our stuff up those inclines. He never complained though. He never does. He just gets us from place to place with little reward for all of his hard work. I hope he knows how much we love him and appreciate him. We finally arrived at the Newport I-40 KOA, and nobody was happier about that than Dodge. We checked in at the office, Gary got me set up in our campsite, then he was off to explore the place. This is your typical KOA. It's pretty well kept, and the campers are all pretty close to each other. There are some nice trees here providing a good amount of shade, though one of the ones hanging over me is obviously dead and more than a little scary. There's a pool here, a large picnic pavilion, a playground, and a recreational area for basketball, volleyball, and horseshoes. One thing that we found funny is the signs for the restrooms, marked as Hillbillys for men, and Hillfillies for women. Gary tells me that the restrooms are nice and clean. There are several little camping cabins here too. This is far from being a picturesque state park, but it's a nice enough place to hang out and relax. One drawback for a lot of people, according to the many online reviews, is the excessive road noise from nearby Interstate 40. It doesn't bother us though. Gary has been hanging out with an old friend of his while we have been here. She knows every inch of Newport and the surrounding areas, and they have spent a lot of time antique shopping and reminiscing about the old days back in St. Petersburg, Florida almost 26 years ago. We have WiFi here at the campsite, and the greatest thing for me has been the many channels of cable TV I've been checking out while Gary and Laurie have been out having fun. As I write this, it is early Sunday morning. We have one more day here. Tomorrow morning, we head west to a state park near Chattanooga, Tennessee. We're taking I-40 to I-75 to get there, and hopefully Dodge will have an easier trip than he had coming up US441 and US74 to get here. He's rested up, and he's ready. I'll write from Chattanooga. Have a great day, and enjoy the rest of your weekend.