Good morning. Prepping the Salsa Las Cruces for a gravel ride.
In the end we rode 17 miles of gravel and closed to vehicles but open to bikes Forest Service roads. None of the trails or FS roads were marked, so we had to “guess” and cleaned a ton of spider webs… The webs are one thing, but when the large spider is in the middle of the web and starts crawling on you, it’s less pleasant!
I wanted to try something new this weekend – instead of Photos of Day, I wanted to create a Vlog or Video Blog post. I didn’t take any pictures, only video. I made a bunch of mistakes, and edited this is less than 2 hours after unpacking, but here it is…. CLICK TO WATCH THE VIDEO
Sam and I backpacked this beautiful loop in the Pisgah National Forest. Starting at NC 215 we joined the Mountain to Sea Trail, past Devils Courthouse, Art Loeb Trail to Black Balsam Knob, Sam Knob Trail to Flat Laurel Creek Trail to NC 215 and back to the truck! Hike #36 and #37 of #52hikechallenge
The day started bright and clear skies (we made a great choice) we did a quick hike – Hike #30 of #52hikechallenge on the Upper Chattooga River trail.
After the hike, we claimed the big rock in the middle of the river and I feel asleep on my blanket under a bright blue sky. I awoke an hour later with a chill to a completely gray sky – (we made the wrong choice)
Even in the cloudy woods, as total eclipse started, the woods got as dark as night! This picture is only the start, I gave up it was so dark!
After totality, the sun broke through the clouds for some pictures – it was still so cloudy, this is without a filter!
as the eclipse continued, we saw more and more…
Even Kodak was protected!
James, Beth and my family. We may have missed seeing the totality, but had a blast, experienced the feeling of totality, and enjoyed the long drive home on small back roads, following the Gazetteer.
Where to go for the Eclipse 2017? After studying weather maps, forecasts, cloud coverage predictions, we chose a spot in Nantahala National Forest near the NC/SC line. We found a spot just above Pot Hole Falls.
Sam wades in the water in late afternoon light.
Mini pies and American Honey = a great evening!
Vacation Day 9
Hike #28 #52hikechallenge High Knob Trail to fire tower
We packed up camp in the morning and headed back up 33 to the trail head for one last hike.
Again what won’t Clay do for a picture?
After the hike we had a picnic lunch at the the roadside overlook and said our goodbyes!
What a relaxing and fun week of camping and exploring with friends!
Till next year…
Vacation Day 7
The day started with some pew pew (or bang) Jim and Beth had not shot their new shotgun, I wanted to shoot my 357 and clay brought a fun target 22 with 200 rounds.
The clip is empty Sam!
The main reason we left the southern part of the forest was to drive the well known forest service roads, there were some rock ledges (no pictures, I was spotting) and a little mud.
and some great views. This is Meadow Knob, we finished on Flagpole Knob before heading back to camp!
Butterfly wing macro, just because it was pretty.
Vacation Day 6 – Hike 27 #52hikechallenge
We were not happy with last night’s campsite, muddy, bugs, so we moved again.
Clay, Kay and I headed out for a later afternoon hike on the Sawmill Trail. Lots of blown down trees to climb over, and LOTS of bear scat, no luck seeing one.
Sam and I walked down to the lake for the sunset, nice to have a quiet moment with the two of us! I am glad she suggested it.
Vacation Day 5 – Moving Day. We left the southern portion of the George Washington National Forest and headed north and into West Virginia. Just after setting up camp and eating a thunderstorm hit us, everyone hid in their camps, Sam, Deb and I played cards when the rain and wind stopped suddenly, the pressure changed and the rain fly was trying to lift straight up off the tent? Very strange…. oh yeah, Sam won several games of Crazy 8 in a row!
Camping with Beth and James? Movie night in the woods. Shaun of the Dead
Vacation Day 2 – Staton Creek Falls. A great roadside waterfall that kept going.
You had to bush whack down to see the whole series of falls.
Then back on the road and lunch at Ben Salem Wayside and this old lock
Canal boats used the lock in the late 1800’s on the North River.
A quick stop at Panther Falls. It was too crowded for us, we watched for a bit and decided to come back later. I am counting it as Hike #24 of #52Hikechallenge, it is a short walk, but I did it 3 times this week, so totaled I am counting it!
The end of the day.
Vacation Day 1 – A foggy on top Brush Mountain deep in the George Washington National Forest, in fact only 1 truck passed our site in 3 days.
Camping with Beth and Jim mean you do things like, I wonder if this leads to a overlook as we bush wack through head high brush.
It didn’t, but at least there were butterflies.
Camping with Beth and Jim also mean you eat well – dessert? Bananas Foster flambe.