I didn’t really want to be home on the one year anniversary of Trinity’s death, and I really wanted a God beam photo for week 9 of 52. We’ve had so much rain that I took the two chances I had last week to capture a sunset, hopefully with crepuscular rays.
First up was Jump Off Rock. No luck on the sunbeams, but I did see a sign for trails that I didn’t know they had, and spotted another fire from the viewing platform.
Second up, a few days later, was Mount Pisgah on the Blue Ridge Parkway at milepost 408.6. Hubby swears we’ve hiked it a long time ago but I didn’t recall it—and I have no photos. Yep, Shannon, just like we joked about, if I have no photos it didn’t happen 🙂 Hubby’s knee was hurting him but he said we could still go. I think he knew how much I really didn’t want to be home at the exact time I found Trinity had died last year on March 2nd 2018.
I read it took 90 minutes to go up the 712 feet in elevation gain and half that to come down the 1.6-mile one-way hike. My sister-in-law had been up there for sunset and said it was beautiful. We left our home around 3:30 and headed to the Mount Pisgah parking lot between two of the many Blue Ridge Parkway road closures.
The forecast said cloudy but it didn’t look too cloudy. Then again it didn’t for Jump Off Rock either, and it was a bust. We packed a snack, flashlights, walking sticks, and my side camera bag. I took along some old photos that I don’t know where they were taken, in hopes if hubby was right, they were taken on that trail, and I could take a “dear photograph” photo with them. Turns out we didn’t pass anything like the scenes in the old photos.
Here are the old photos taken somewhere around WNC, probably in the late 80’s or early 90’s if any you know where they were taken I’d love to go back to the same spots.
We hiked up as fast as I could go, look at the old photo above, I couldn’t hike when I weighed 90 pounds either, stopping several times for me to slow my heartbeat and catch my breath. His knee seemed no worse but his hip and low back were not enjoying the hike. He said we could keep going. It took us 62 minutes to go up the 1.6 miles to the summit. Oddly enough it took us 50 minutes to come down and I thought we were on a much faster pace on the return.
Here is one photo of the rock steps, just repeat this about 8x and you get an idea. The first third to halfway point didn’t feel like we were gaining much in elevation, but boy, in the midway to endpoint I could sure feel it.
Even though our glasses prescription is not the same I took his lined bifocals to see if I liked them better or worse than my new progressives. I think I’ve decided for driving and hiking with my camera I prefer mine and I’ll still just take them off to read more than a glimpse of the camera back because the field of close up vision is less than 3″ wide. I have to turn my nose/eyes just to read my 3″ wide darn cell phone, and they seem to fog up worse. In hindsight, I should’ve carried my distance single vision for the trip down because progressives are not good on stairs, much less rocky uneven ground going downhill in the dark. Okay off topic here.
We got there about 6pm, with sunset happening around 6:20. I had this on my possible list for visiting family to see even though it was listed as strenuous, but I don’t think my mom, aunt or uncle would enjoy it with all the rock steps. Plus now that I know I’ve been there I don’t care to go back while there is so much new stuff I have yet to see. I do wish I’d remembered to try Facebooks 360 view app. I never have used it, but there was almost a full circle view. Here is my video, which is not 360 because I even though I would’ve liked to ask the couple to stand behind me as I panned around… I didn’t know them. All were handheld as steady as I could be since I didn’t carry the tripod.
Neither of us recalls ever being at the base of the 339′ tall WLOS tower. In the hazy distance, we could see a storm that looked like it was behind Biltmore, near Asheville and I think we could see the smoke from Canton. In the one photo above with the equipment on the right-hand side, did you notice the big shadow Mount Pisgah made on the land below us? We could see Frying Pan Tower (another photo op idea there for the future). We could see several flashing lights on various towers on other mountain tops. I was surprised that the cables, bits of metal and broken looking stuff at the tower base. I was also surprised it was not blocked off and I could capture a photo from the center of the tower.
There were trails that went off in a few directions out from under the tower and hubby said there was a building. I read that it is the transmitter building and that there is a cable car that can bring equipment up from the valley for the engineers. They could modify that and charge for a lift!
My legs had the shakes so I didn’t continue to explore as much as he did. There were few clouds in high in the sky but there was a layer down at the mountain tops. We brought flashlights and planned to watch the sunset and hike down in the dark. The temp when we left the house was 62. The temps at the top (elevation 5722) had dropped into probably the 30’s and it didn’t look like it was going to be a stunner of a sunset when the last colors were covered by clouds so we started back down before the sun set behind the mountain.
On the ride back home off the parkway, we passed lots of bike riders pedaling up in the dark with super bright headlamps. In my “pot calling the kettle black” moment I wonder why anyone would ride a bike up a hill in the dark. Instead of just buying another flashlight, I may look into the bright lights the bikers had. I will also be packing extra batteries. Our flashlights didn’t die but if they had I carried no backup batteries and even though we each had a flashlight, one was pretty wimpy. Hubby had his cell phone with him and we could’ve used it, but I had left mine at home. A guy who ran up to the platform at the top asked me to take a photo of him and his large dog. We didn’t hear him coming back down behind us. It made me think about how important it is to get a dog that matches your activity level. I mean we’ve seen plenty of dogs on hikes that looked miserable, this one looked fine but if Tyler was a dog, that we took with us, he’d probably be wishing he’d been adopted into a family that didn’t hike.
I really would love to know if the rest of you with heavy image blogs pay for your site or you just keep filling it up like I am?
I am finally wrapping up year-end paperwork, but in addition to doing the entire year all pressed for time after December (my fault completely) I ran into yet another computer issue. I use Thunderbird email because it is the closest I could find to Outlook Express and it has always managed my many email accounts pooling them all to one folder on my computer. Now, if you’ll remember I switched from the working HP, to a new Dell, got a lemon, then switched again to the replacement I have now. My email folder did not take all the moves in stride. I thought it had until I began searching emails for dollar amounts to match to an item while doing year-end work. Entire years were gone from the inbox folder. All the mail folders are IN the folder on my hard drive but Thunderbird is not showing them all. I’ve deleted all the *.msf files so it could rebuild itself. I’ve chosen repair on each folder. I’ve done everything I know to do, yet it is just still a jumbled mess of emails with some items showing and some not with no rhyme or reason. I really don’t like computer work!
I need to make Tyler’s annual vet appointment, and I need to get back to Walmart for my eyeglasses to be adjusted within 30 days of whenever I picked them up, on top of the regular work stuff. At least it quit raining even if the temps plummeted it looks better to see the sunshine and be cold than just dreary gray skies and more rain. On the bright side- we should have a lot of May flowers if they are dependant on lots of rain 🙂
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