Traveling by motorhome, day 18 of our honeymoon, we loved our nomadic experience as we made our way, place to place, one amazing stop at a time. After Memphis, TN we decided that we didn’t have enough time to make it to Las Vegas, so we decided to slowly start heading back home. I called a friend and said, “We’re in Memphis, what do you thing we might want to see next, having decided to turn around.” He said “what about Pigeon Forge, TN? There’s a lot to do there!” We made a reservation to “camp” at a local RV park that evening. The thing was, it was it was September 16th when we arrived, but so did 20,000 other visitors for the Fall Pigeon Forge Rod Run. What the heck? Sounds like fun, so off we went.
Hot Rods, Junkers, Hobby Cars and More
If I told you that you would not believe how many cars were there, lining the streets for miles, I don’t blame you. I’ve never seen so many people sitting on lawn chairs next to their pride and joy. You tell me, would you buy this?
OK, really…. we had no idea this was going on, but it was a lot of fun to walk around and take photos, talk to the owners and discover just how crazy about their cars they really were! We called this one “The Creamsicle” since it looked just like one. Yet, finished with precision. While odd, it was beautifully done.
Some brought back memories, some were just weird but I loved the 50-year-old (or older) cars that were painstakingly restored by hobbyists who just wanted to do it. Yes, they spent a fortune they knew they would never recover, they didn’t care. You can see the reflection of the owner sitting on a lawn chair in the lower left front fender.
The Funniest Car at The Show
As we wandered through the crowds for several evenings, as the sun was setting, we came across some cars that were just hilarious. This one in particular, had what looked like past family members in the back seat of a car built just for them!
The Car I Could Drive Away With
Forgive my childhood ramblings but if I had THIS car, I would have dated a lot more in High School, no kidding. This was THE car to own in 1972 and it was the envy of every pimple-faced teenager in the neighborhood. No exception here, pimples and all.
As it turned out, taking a tripod was nearly impossible, with so many people crowding the streets. I had to hand hold every shot. I was using a relatively slow Sony FE 16-35mm zoom lens on my Sony A7MkII. Both have incredible stabilization and I was able to expose at a 1/15 of a second and still get some sharp images, but it was hard. Some cars I photographed did not come out because my aperture was down to F3.4/F4 and that means shallow depth of field. So some apologies up front. Some images are crowded with neon lights, people and other cars, I still had fun and found a few I think you will like.
Who doesn’t love Ferris Wheels?
After one of our walks through the Detroit Iron wasteland, we decided to check out the local action. We noticed a monster Ferris Wheel in the distance. Yet the crowded streets, even at midnight, were really difficult to navigate. Off in the distance, there it is, take a right, no left, no right… Hmmm, this wasn’t getting us any closer. Finally, we found a restricted parking lot across from where the Ferris Wheel was. I gave the keys to Carol, grabbed my camera bag and tripod, I was gone in a flash while she managed the guard already heading in our direction. A smile and a few kind words and she’s in!
Guess how many of these time exposures I made? Nope, try again. Nope, not even close. I was at it for hours. Once again my sweetheart was happy finding the ice cream stand and hung out with me as my camera clicked away. Every time I exposed, the colors and patterns were completely different.
The End is Near
After several nights of awesome cars, silly horse shows and several great southern meals, it was time to move on to the next stop. That’s the beauty of being a turtle, you always have your house with you. For my more stationery friends, you don’t know what you are missing! See you next time!
All of my photographs are now shot with the Amazing Sony A7rII and two lenses: The Sony/Zeiss FE 16-35mm and the Sony/Zeiss FE 24-240 mm. They are solid metal, no plastic. Yes, they are heavier than Canon lenses, but optically they are stunning. The Sony A7r series can accept other lenses of any make just by mating it with a small adapter, and I use other lenses from time to time. But when I travel and have to carry my system with my into the field, I use just those two lenses, and I have everything I need to explore the world around me.
OK, just one more thing. Subscribe to my blog or I sell your car next year in Pigeon Forge. You don’t want that to happen, right? 🙂