After the hike we camped for the night, waiting for our morning ferry to Cape Lookout – the South Core Banks. Kodak seemed happy to back at the beach.
We drove around looking for a secluded area to camp and found this fresh turtle track, she must have laid her eggs hours before.
This site is perfect, can’t see a camper down either side!
Clay fishes for bait.
Kay wanted her picture with her fish – then it jumped (or whatever fish do)
Light painting – two Tacomas with Flippacs.
Hike #20 of #52hikechallenge – Neusiok Trail in the Croatan National Forest. The trail is part of the Mountains to Sea Trail and starts along the banks of the Neuse River.
This Osprey chick was calling for diner and hiding behind a stick…
Warrior Creek Mountain Bike Trail.
Everyone sees the big berms, but this was a beautiful view of the single-track.
I had planned two laps of the 12+ mile trail, so I figured a touch over 3 hours.
Six miles in (exactly half way or in the middle of the woods) , I felt this.. a broken seat rail.
My repair kit was sparse, but I had wrapped my CO2 in Gorilla Tape, so I taped a tire lever as a splint. A mile or so later, I passed a campsite and jumped on the road to get back to my truck. Since the trail is almost 2 hours from home, I didn’t want to quit riding, so I drove to Walmart – nothing but big comfy saddles. A quick search I found Cook’s Sporting Goods in Wilkesboro. It is a very cool outfitter place, backpacking, paddling, bike, ball sports, they had it all. On the bike wall all they had was big comfy saddles, dejected I asked the kid working if they had anything else – he asked me if I wanted more cushioning… (how old do I look?) ummm no I want a real saddle. He said he had a box of web sale stuff.
A Giant Contact something was close enough, marked down, it’s a winner.
Back to the trail and another lap. Great day of riding!
Hike #3 of the #52hikechallenge. Raven Rock State Park. The famed rock is 1 mile long and 150 feet tall.
The weather was perfect and I knew it would be crowed, lots of cars, but plenty of trails, so still plenty of solitude.
Northington Lock and Dam remains ripple the water on the Cape Fear River.
“A road that stretched from Raleigh to Fayetteville crossed the Cape Fear River via the Northington Ferry and served as the area’s major transportation route. Locks and dams were built along the river to facilitate navigation by boat, and Raven Rock became an important landmark for river pilots. After a hurricane destroyed the locks and dams in 1859, the structures were not replaced.” From Wikipedia.
Crossing Low Water Bridge in the Uwharrie National Forest.
My friend from my Fayetteville days Chris ask me to join him scouting roads for a gravel grinder ride/race in a couple of weeks.
Not all of them worked out as planned, a little hike a bike, but a great day in the woods!
2017 started with a hike through the trails at Carolina Beach State Park. One of my resolutions this year is the #52hikechallenge – to average one hike a week during the year.
Hike #1 of the year, a big loop hitting almost every trail in the park, 2 hours and 40 minutes and ~6 miles. We had two goals:
Sugarloaf Trail, leading to Sugarloaf sand dune, a 55 foot tall dune used on navigation charts since 1663 for river pilots on the Cape Fear River.
Someone left a rope swing.
and Flytrap Trail, searching for wild Venus Flytraps – thanks to the eagle eyed Clarks for finding a pair of them –
just a cactus, but cool to see it with fruit in the “wild”
On the way back to the start, we saw a bunch of buzzards in the woods – there must be something there – so we investigated….
a fresh coyote
feet and ears
We debated why so many remains in one spot. Choice 1 – Park employees dump road kill here. Choice 2 – Park employees kill problem animals and dump here (but if the fox was suspected of rabies, seems unlikely) Choice 3 – We have entered a VERY BAD place.
Before heading home, we headed back to the beach and just watched the ocean. Welcome 2017!
Sam and I head to the beach to celebrate the New Year. When we arrived on Friday evening, we set up camp, made dinner and walked along the beach on Snows Cut off the Cape Fear River at low tide.
Big trees needed to be walked over/on
and a cold evening around the Little Red Campfire (propane campfire) playing cards.
The day started slow and we got on the road a little late, it was race #2 of the season, but the light was awesome, and we stopped a couple of times for pictures. In fact I had to talk myself into going to the race over hiking and picture taking.
But race I did! The Boone race is always great, a challenging course and free pizza and beer make it an easy choice!
Sam’s picture of this year’s special treat, an of camber greasy turn downhill… lots of falls!
I was happy I rode it all 3 laps, no falls for me.
Me on the run up.
Celebrating my 44th place : P – thanks Sam for the pictures and cheering for me!
It was time for pictures after the race, the Blue Ridge Parkway was busy as near peak color was everywhere!
Price Lake at Julian Price Memorial Park
Jesse Brown Cottage next to the Cool Springs Baptist Church on the parkway.
Cascade Falls, also called “The Cascades“, located at E. B. Jeffress Park
Just a creek
Raven Rock Overlook
Me cycling just for a picture. (Sam picture)
The day started before dawn for the drive to Lenoir and the first race of the 2016-17 North Carolina Cyclocross Series. Turns out tennis does not help one bit for cycling – I finished about 5 from dead last, but this picture from Sam captures the moment… this is the last lap and coming out of the last turn, the lap before I had caught this guy but took a beer hand-up (illegal, but it’s ‘cross) and had to work to catch him again, as I started my sprint, the chain slipped (why I am about to go over the bars) so no fun sprint to the line for us.
Then Sam and I visited Henry River Mill Village (it’s own post) and headed for a hike a part of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail to the Upper and Lower Gragg Prong Waterfalls and Hunt-Fish Falls. We got a late start, and I decided to turn around before it got dark, as it was it was after 5:30 when we got back to the truck.
Cruising along dirt roads in the mountains
Finally we got on the foggy Blue Ridge Parkway and headed for a campground for the night.
Dinner, a small fire, a quick card game and off to bed!