It's hard to describe the sensation of walking in a cloud. ⛅️ My better half and I took a trip to the Great Smoky Mountains last month and we spent most of our time with our heads in the clouds - quite literally. (And not just because we were celebrating our anniversary.)😅 Hiking Mt. Le Conte on a party cloudy day gives a whole new meaning to the name "Great Smoky Mountains." The trails appeared almost smoky or foggy but in reality - they were just blanketed in a cloud.
I had prepared my backpack with what I believed to be all of the necessary items for our 15 mile hike. I had bandaids and antibiotic cream in case of random scapes and scratches along the journey. (I'm ridiculously clumsy. 💁🏻♀️) I even packed extra socks and ibuprofen in anticipation of wet feet and muscle soreness. What I didn't plan for was the encompassing moisture that happens when one walks through clouds for hours at a time. Anyone know what one should wear when hiking through the clouds?
Walking through a cloud is like being completely enveloped in a weightless, damp blanket. It's quite a unique sensation really. The low clouds gave a mysterious feel to the trails. Like entering the magical land of Narnia or shire.
I may have been underprepared for the dampness of cloud walking but I was fully prepared for our picnic lunch at the summit. #priorities We feasted on turkey sandwiches, apples, sweet potato chips and ranger cookies. 🍪 Anyone else feel like lunch is the best part of the hike?
My legs felt a whole new level of exhaustion after our 8+ hour hiking day. Ibuprofen helped relieve the muscle soreness but carbs helped with the mental fatigue. 🍝 There's nothing like a big bowl of cheesy potatoes to boost my energy levels. This Cheesy Mashed Potato Casserole is exactly what my body craves after a serious hike or after a long walk to the mailbox. 😂
Cheesy Mashed Potato Casserole
4 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and sliced into 1/2" thick slices
1 teaspoon salt
16 Tablespoons butter
1 1/2 cups half and half
1 teaspoon pepper
1 1/2 cups Gruyere cheese, shredded
1 1/2 cups whole milk mozzarella, shredded
1/2 cup minced chives
3/4 cup panko
1/2 cup Gruyere cheese, shredded
2 Tablespoons butter, melted
Bake 30 minutes at 350. Let cool 30 minutes.
Cheesy mashed potatoes were the perfect compliment to my sirloin and parmesan meatloaf and green bean dinner.
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