Published: November 13th 2008November 6th 2008
This looks like I messed with the coloring, but it's the way it turned out. It's quite dark in there (duh!) and the flash reflected off the falls this color.
Happy Birthday, Lisa and Sara!
We spent two days in Chattanooga on the way to our next project, and as many areas as we’ve seen, this is one of the most stunning. We spent the first day driving around the downtown area, and along the river, and then we took the incline railway to the top of Lookout Mountain. Marvin and Jackie traveled with us, but they only stayed one day, as they used to live near here, and have seen the sights. Of the three major sites we had planned, they most wanted to do the incline railway, and that’s how we decided to do it first! There were many times we were viewing the area through the roof!! The railway has been running since 1895, and is not only for sightseeing, but also for transporting people down the mountain for work and school. What a way to travel!
The second place we visited was Ruby Falls inside Lookout Mountain. We took an elevator down 260 feet, and when we walked deep enough into the cave to find the water fall, we were over 1100 feet below the top of the mountain. (We didn’t walk that that
This kind of gives you a look from near the top. There is only one track, so the train coming up and the train going down meet in the center, where the track splits into two for enough time for them to pass. They operate on a cable pulley system. It's 72.7% grade near the top of the mountain.
far~~the mountain rose above us.) The water fell 140’ inside this cavern…not along the side of the cavern, but straight down. We walked full circle around the waterfall. Incredible. We both would have liked more time to look at the formations in the cave, but everyone had to travel with a guide, who kept us moving right along. There wasn't much space on the trails, so that's probably why we weren't allowed to go on our own. And it did give us more time to spend at the water falls. Not enough time, mind you, but more time than if we'd wandered at our own pace.
But the most
incredible place, in my opinion, was Rock City. It’s atop Lookout Mountain (are you surprised?!) and there are paths going among and around the natural rocks~~they're like streets, with walls on either side! (That’s how it got the name Rock City; in the early 1800s sightseers used to ride their mules down the streets and avenues, and they told others it was a rock city.) Some places were wide enough to walk side by side, and some places you had to nearly squeeze through…not quite squeeze, but it wasn’t spacious!
This gives you some idea of the slope.
The inside of the car is on levels, so you can stay in your seat. Look at the view from the ceiling! (You don't know her, so don't give it much thought!)
The sign on one of the trails said, “Think thin…suck it in. If you’re still too wide, turn to the side.” I got through by just thinking thin, but I had to think hard!! The paths walk you through gardens, and trees, all in the fall colors. And then there’s the waterfall…..it was breathtaking, in all three scenes. One time the path crossed near it, looking down. Later, following the path that walks through the entire garden, we walked above it, looking directly down. Then later we were on a small platform protruding from the mountain that gave us the picture that you’ll see in a minute. It was so beautiful that I nearly cried. Oohhh…
A fun thing in Rock City is a cavern that was manmade, in which they built Fairland Caverns and Mother Goose Village inside. They have little niches with fairy tales in each, and then in the main part (about the size of a basketball court) is a miniature village with scenes from the different nursery rhymes, and all the Golden Books that you read as a kid…you just walk around the outside and look at each scene, while nursery tunes are playing.
We're in Rock City, on Lookout Mountain.
We were driving up the mountain, and entered Georgia to go to Rock City, and then back in Tennessee when we went down a different road! And the incline railway is in TN all the way up...and it's the same mountain!
So much fun! Boy did that part make me want the grandkids with us! The natural beauty, and then the way it had been developed, just made Rock City a memorable place. If I had the opportunity to go back to Chattanooga, I’d definitely do that one again, if I had to choose only one.
There are more photos below