Smoky Mountain Sunrise – Santeetlah Gap

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A beautiful Smoky Mountain sunrise from Santeetlah Gap, North Carolina. The valleys have filled with fog overnight, which will soon be evaporated by the sunlight.

This scene is from a part of North Carolina that I rarely visit. We had to leave the house for wedding preparations, so decided to do some exploring. This is a view of Santeetlah Gap, in the westernmost reaches of North Carolina, very near the Tennessee border. It actually felt quite a bit different than the Highlands Plateau, which is where I usually photograph. The mountains were higher, and the foliage less like a rain forest. And with the night came more fog – or at least the fog was easier to see. From high on the ridge near Snowbird Mountain Lodge, you could see all the peaks and valleys below, flooded with fog like like a dammed-up river. It was the perfect depiction of a true Smoky Mountain sunrise. Even though this type of scene might be relatively common in the part of the Smokies that is more western than my own, it was quite a sight for me.

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