Sunday, May 31, 2009

Hiking in the Mountains -- Spring 2009 Cherohala Skyway

One of the things Phil and I enjoy most about being at our cabin in North Georgia is being able to take walks in the woods. Since buying the cabin, I have dealt with problems that prevented my taking long walks -- first an arthritic hip that finally was replaced and then a pesky stress fracture in my foot that took nearly two years to heal. Now that I can walk comfortably again we are combining our hobbies of geocaching, bird watching and wildflower identification once again with physical conditioning.

Cherohala Skyway North Carolina to Tennessee, May 30

1. Spirit Ridge Accessible Trail .7 mi RT
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Rhododendron Phil at Overlook
Teeth of the Lion

2. Huckleberry Knob -- Geocaching and Hike 2.61 miles

Phil heads off the end of the world
This trail, an old road, took us up 300 ft. to 5500 ft -- we were higher than Denver. Two lumberjacks in 1899 are remembered here on top where they froze after too much whiskey.
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View from the top
3. Mud Gap Trialhead .7
We chose to walk a bit here because it included a little bit of the new addition to the Benton MacKaye Trail.
In keeping with our gruesome meanderings, we stopped at a memorial to a"an unknown man killed by the Kirkland Bushwackers."

Friday, May 29, 2009

Hiking in the Mountains -- Spring 2009 Bear Hair Gap Trail

Another day that threatened rain, but Phil picked a trail that looked easy in Vogel Park south of Blairsville, GA. What was supposed to be a 3 mile hike turned out to be 5.2 from the car and about 700 feet change in elevation. I'll admit we took a short nature trail loop as well.
The views were fantastic from the overlook at the top where we had no trouble locating a geocache that had somewhat disguised coordinates. Coming down afforded some real challenges to balance that Chloe would have had not problem with. We had to cross the creek several times on logs.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Hiking in the Mountains -- Spring 2009 Big Cedar

Trail head at Woody Gap in Suches, GA.

Bear alert
We used The Best of the Appalachian Trail Day Hikes book to find a 2 mile round trip hike on the AT from Woody Gap to Big Cedar Mountain, an elevation change of 600 feet. There were tons of flame azalea lining the route.
Trailhead on AT to Big Cedar Mountain

Flame Azalea
It threatened rain the whole while, but we did get some spectacular views from the top of Big Cedar.
We also met four through hikers 3 with Wizard of OZ names and Papa G, a CPA from Montana.
Arrowwood Flower

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Baby Wrens

Carolina Wren Babies in Hanging Basket on our back deck