We headed up to Tennessee to check out a house being offered by a fellow homeschooler for a trip I have planned and as a possible place to stay in lieu of camping next spring. I can't say enough nice things about him, if you are headed to South Cumberland State Park and need a place to camp, give him a call it's Carl Conry 931-636-6025. He has teamed up with a couple neighbors and they built a camping cabin right on the Fiery Gizzard Trail. This means you could drive up and set up camp Friday night, park at Fiery Gizzard trailhead, shuttle with him up to Foster Falls trailhead then hike the 8 miles back to your campsite, have a nice lunch and then set off again to the Fiery Gizzard trailhead 5 miles away, stopping to swim and take photos because all you will have is your daypack! Get back to your car, head back to camp and have a nice toasty fire, get up on Sunday and walk out to Raven's Point overlook and check out the privately-owened Anderson Falls via some AWESOME 'hidden' stairs, head back to camp and maybe splash around in the little creek before rolling up your bag and walking back to the car. It's like dream backpacking. Slackpacking. There's a roof over your head, you are off the ground and AND there's a little his and hers privy. And a broom.

Creek right below camp

You can hear this from the cabin. Or better yet, hang a hammock and enjoy the cool breeze, too!

For the more tender types, he has another spot to camp where you can plug in your fan and sleep on your blow-up bed. For those needing even longer accomodations, he is sometimes able to arrange a house rental. I lucked up and he was willing to cut us a great deal if we were willing to be guinea pigs, the rental aspect of the partnership is in it's infancy.

We arrived around 2:30 on Friday, driving up through Huntsville and taking the detour through Cowan to get there. It's such a pretty drive. We had arranged to meet him a little later in the day, so we headed to Grundy Lake and had a picnic before driving back to the house.


Carl showed us around both houses, they are not both available yet, but plans are in the works, so give him a call if you are looking for somewhere to stay-he will work with you if he can! Tell him Esther gave him 2 thumbs up!

After the house tour, we walked around on the property and then checked out the camping cabin and walked to the base of Anderson Falls, all the while he's filling us in on his family history and the history of the area. Someone in his family has lived on that same farm since the 1800's. He LOVES the area and is very friendly and chatty. The final stop on the tour was at the trail junction so he could point out how to get around, though there are well-placed signs if you don't have a personal guide. He headed home, having worked a full day, handing us the house key and making sure we knew where to stand to get a cell signal.

There is no phone, internet, cable or computer at the house, by dark, we had kind of milled around and run out of things to do! The kids located a closet with board games, so we opted to play Taboo until everyone was ready for bed.

Chan and I were team A!