Sunday, April 6, 2008

On Top of the World-- and Alone

On Tuesday, we took a day trip to Mt. Mitchell State Park. Though the address is "Burnsville," it took us at least 45 minutes to an hour to get there from the town.  We stopped at the U.S. Forestry office there to make sure of our route and that the roads and park were open. The park was, and some of the roads were, and others were not. It is a state park in the national forest. The only way there is by the Blue Ridge Parkway, which was closed south of the park to Asheville. 

There are a few tunnels on that road. Here we are coming out of one and heading into the next.100_2077

On the park road was where we saw the grouse and several turkeys. We looked for bears but were disappointed. The ranger told us about the foggy evening last fall when she hit one in her small SUV  and she said they were so numerous last summer, the campground had to be closed.

The views along the way were lovely. With the deciduous trees still barren, the contour of the land was so apparent.

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 100_2061 Though we saw few cars on the trip up, we were really amazed that once on the summit of Mt. Mitchell, we truly had the place to ourselves. It was a large parking lot---but completely empty. After all, it is the highest point east of the Mississippi. The observation tower was closed for reconstruction, but no workers were to be seen. We took a quick picture using the tripod, which the wind blew onto two legs before righting itself again. (Here's the cropped version. The original has all of us!)

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When we opened the car doors, the wind blew them shut. Yeah, it was a tad windy. We had a our picnic in the car!

1 comment:

wlhawh said...

I have only been there once and if my memory is right it was wind that dad as well.
(it was a long time ago)