A weekend that changes. Instead of elk, we ended up in Boone again, since I hadn’t planned anything, we searched for a waterfall I had not been to, this is Laurel Creek Falls (I think) but we rock hopped up the creek for a long ways looking for more. Either way this is an awesome swimming hole.
A corn dog and loaded fries with a gose beer at The Cardinal in Boone! Yum!!!
No sunset tonight, only fog!
Today started with a hike to Devils Bathtub. This hike requires at least 11 creek crossings and had been on my to do list for years.
Most pictures of Devils Bathtub show this turquoise pool, but it is a great swimming hole just 100 yards from the actual “bathtub”
The “bathtub” is a 3 foot wide by 9+ feet deep pool at the base of a small waterfall.
I tried to touch the bottom… it’s deep!
The next stop, Stony Creek Waterfall
This one is awesome, you can swim behind the falls!
My cooking success tonight – I melted Hersey Miniatures in a double boiler and poured over cheesecake and strawberries!
Another day in the Jefferson National Forest and the Falls of Dismal
We had the place to ourselves, we hiked up the creek, explored the rocks and I swam around to see if I could jump from the top (I couldn’t) This is a great spot on a warm day to swim and picnic!
The afternoon was spent packing up camp to move further west, getting stuck behind an accident and waiting for Lifeflight (which circled and left) setting up a new camp, and visiting High Knob Lookout Tower for the sunset.
I always tell my students, when photographing a sunrise or sunset, turn around and photograph what is being illuminated by the light!
Good morning from Jefferson National Forest, a rainy and foggy morning!
The whole site! 2 Tacomas, a tear drop, Flippac and Sam’s tent.
A cool log on the way to Cascades Falls.
the 4 wheel drive trail to Butt Mountain
The fire tower was on top Butt Mountain, but you couldn’t climb to the cab.
On the way down, we took a different trail and James slid into a hole,
on Butt Mountain : )
luckily Maxtrax worked again… no damage! (other than a mud flap)
Keto Taco Tuesday. Chicken on bell peppers, cheese and sour cream.
I was up early but couldn’t run since the trail into the camp spot was under water from last night’s storm, good thing there is a waterfall to photograph. This is teh top of Wolf Creek Falls.
Just trying different angles
Sadly I chose to only bring my mirrorless Panasonic and couldn’t get the wide angle I wanted
That did force me to climb to a place I have never photographed the falls from.
Sam is ready to go…..
But even to leave, we had to use a chain saw.
Whenever we are here, we hike up Max Patch
Sam took off and hiked up alone, when I found her, this is what she was doing, I love she is happy in the moment and not because she hiked to the top.
Rain or sun?
Back to driving dirt roads.
a railroad bridge over the French Broad River in the Cherokee National Forest
of course we all crossed the bridge like in “Stand By Me.”
Camp site #2, on the banks of the French Broad.
Mini-moonshine, beer and shots of whiskey around a fire = a great night!
The day started early with a trip to Wolf Creek Falls.
We had the waterfall all to ourselves.
After lunch, we hiked to a 2nd waterfall – Little Fall Branch.
Then on to Max Patch for a sunset and Milky Way viewing party. Lighting plays in the clouds.
the sunset was amazing!
But the Milky Way was awesome with lightning still bouncing around the clouds below it!
Day 2 – DuPont State Forest. No bike pictures, but after the ride I hiked to Triple Falls
and Hooker Falls for a quick swim
Then to New Belgium Brewery for recovery fluids.
and the drive home sunset.
An Instagram follower asked me for interior shots of the Flippac
Save the best for last…. DuPont State Forest and last trail of the day, the super fast and flowing Ridgeline Trail.
Grassy Creek Falls
There are a lot of road closures due to recent rains (221 south of Blowing Rock) and teh Parkway was closed at the Viaduct. SO I spent the middle of teh day driving dirt roads and exploring on my way to….
Upper Creek Falls….
and a swimming hole. The water was VERY cold!
Finished the day with a sunset on the Blue Ridge Parkway
I slept in this morning and decided to ride Tsali’s Left Loop the recommended direction, then turn around and ride it race direction as a negative split. I then rode Right Loop as a cool down, before taking the fire road back.
Fontana Lake is low….
After riding, cleaning up and packing up I did some exploring. First was the tunnel on the Road to Nowhere…. I was disappointed, first it is a short hike, the tunnel isn’t long enough to need a light, but it is still a cool story. I wanted to hike further down to a waterfall, but I misread the description, not a 5 mile round trip, but 5 miles each way…. opps!
Tom Branch Falls in the Great Smokey Mountain National Park.
Juney Whank Falls
After a quick bite in Bryson City I drove around a bit looking for primitive camping, but gave up and started home. A great weekend!