Greg and I found beach-vacation nirvana when we visited St. George Island, FL this week. Quite beaches, miles of bike path, dog-friendly, hiking, and more. It was a wonderful few days.
Today was the perfect day for hiking. The sun was shining, but it wasn’t too hot and there was a lovely wind blowing. Greg and I kept it local and scaled a mountain that’s basically in our backyard – Mt. Yonah. I wish I could post my GPS map, but I screwed it up royally by starting it late and then forgetting to run it off until we were back on the highway. One of the fun parts about Yonah is that near the summit, there are multitudes of trails that interweave around the mountain and cliff face. I think we take a different route up to the top every time. Another fun part is that Yonah has some of the best views around.
Panther Creek Falls is one of our top three hikes. It’s the perfect length to make you feel accomplished. It’s not too hilly. And there’s a gorgeous waterfall at the end. This is the first time our hiking corgi, Scotch came along. There were places he struggled with, especially near the waterfalls, but he pulled through like a champ.
Panther Creek Falls is an in-and-out hike that totals 7 miles. It’s mostly an easy hike until the last half mile or so where the terrain becomes steep, rocky, and there’s one place where the path is completely washed away. It took Greg, Me, and Scotch 4 hours and 35 minutes in total. We stopped for short rests and snacks three times.
Parking is $4.00
So here I was thinking that I was only a couple months behind in posting hiking pics, then I realized I’d completely skipped over posting about our hike on the Logan’s Turnpike trail, which Greg and I did back in November. I’m only 5 months late!
Anyhoo, you may remember our previous trip to Logan’s Turnpike, which was done during the warmer months. Because it’s a little-used trail, it was completely overgrown and parts of the trail had turned into a marshy stream. Oh, and there were bugs, lots and lots of winged things flying around our faces. Needless to say, it wasn’t our favorite-est of hikes. However, we figured that these issues were directly related to the warmer months, and decided to return in the cooler months. So on a pleasant day in November, we headed out to change our perspective of this trail.
Logan’s Turnpike has an interesting history. It’s an old road. You can still find artifacts of this along the side of the trail, old rusty pails and such. The end of the trail/road was so steep that some of the first cars couldn’t make it on their own. In order for a car to top the hill, the driver would have to turn the car around and drive in reverse, preferably with someone else helping to push (which sounds incredibly dangerous, if you ask me).
Anyhoo, this time the trek up and back down the mountain was much improved. We still didn’t see a single soul on this hike. There was little to no growth on the trail, the bugs were in hiding, and the marsh had dried up. All-in-all, it was a good day.
Raven Cliff Falls is one of the most popular hiking trails in the area. At the end of the easy 2.5 mile trail is, well, a rock cliff. This is the third time Greg and I have done this trail and the second time we finished it. (The last time, we turned back due to a yellow jacket nest on the trail. This was literally the week after we were attacked by hornets on the Yellow Mtn Trail, so we were a bit skittish of flying, stingy things.) You can see pictures from our first Raven Cliff hike here.
This time, we took our ever-happy trail corg with us. Scotch loved his hike.
Happy new year everyone! Surprisingly, there were no hangovers this morning, so Greg and I celebrated the new year by going on a hike. We decided to do the full Blood Mountain Loop, which involves the Byron Herbert Reece, Freeman, and Appalachian trails. The hike is a total of 6 miles. There are very few flat spots, with the trail mostly being slightly up or down hill the entire way. We’ve done parts of this trail before, but some parts of it were new to us. We also took our Corgi, Scotch, with us today, and it was all new to him. This hike also marks the first time we’ve ever met another hiking corgi. One corgi on a mountain trail is enough to elicit excitement, but two corgis caused some outright astonishment among fellow hikers (“Are you guys with the other corgi group?” “Did you know there’s another corgi ahead/behind you?” “Wow, I never thought I’d see hiking corgis!” and so on and so forth). A clear, gorgeous day plus a holiday means that the trail was packed (this is one of the most popular trails in the area). Overall, it was a wonderful day and an awesome hike.