Plans are nothing; planning is everything —Dwight D. Eisenhower
On June 24th my hubby injured his finger, before that June and I had a long photo outing but I didn’t get to the pics and post until now. The plan was to see if the rhododendron were still blooming at Craggy Gardens. On the way up to it, we pulled off at a few overlooks. I wish I’d noticed which one we saw the incredible crepuscular rays traveling across the landscape. I have never seen such a site. It was just so incredible to watch. I thought I made two videos but in my haste, I guess I only got the button pressed once.
I’ve heard luck favors the prepared, but boy did I feel lucky to see such a sight!
If you know which overlook we were at with the sunbeams, I’d love to know. It was before and the opposite side of the road than Craggy’s trails parking lot (the one big lot, past the one with the building with bathrooms). We were headed North on the BRP when we saw the sunbeams on our right and pulled off, before we got to Craggy on our left, so probably MM 380 – 364? I tried to look online but couldn’t decide.
Craggy was socked in fog, wind and spitting rain. I got out to do a video and it wiped my hair right out of the ponytail. We said we wanted to go to cooler higher elevations in summer. It was in the upper 40’s that day while down at Mountain Home it was in the 80’s. I’d rather be cold than hot.
We’d planned an early lunch at Mt Mitchell but since we skipped Craggy we were too early. We walked to the viewing platform and could see Table Rock and Hawksbill when the clouds broke, both on my “to see list” soon. I remembered to get out my dads compass and took a photo since we had the platform to ourselves.
We parked at Green Knob Overlook and walked up the road a bit to the trailhead to see the Green Knob Fire Tower. We past several flowers I’m not quite sure what they were. I’ve been to Pisgah Tower, Fryingpan Tower and now this one all this year. It has less of a view to see without climbing the tower than Fryingpan did and even though it was windy, it was less so than Fryingpan was. Just an FYI the handrail has metal poking where your hand wraps around it so grip lightly. I know I’ve seen this tower from the road, but even though I was looking for it, I missed it this time.
On the way back to Green Knob Overlook and my car, I saw the tree in the curve. I just had to take a photo of the tree and the black tire marks punctuated by the dashed yellow line. The tree was my favorite shot of the day, even though I really liked the dead tree we saw later.
The dead tree is at Laurel knob was neat but I didn’t take the time to walk around and hunt the best angle. We could see Table Rock from this overlook too. I’m guessing it was at Laurel Knob overlook mm349.
So now we were hungry but so was everyone else. We found a table for lunch in Little Switzerland where I tried Hummingbird cake for the first time. I felt rushed to give up our table for those waiting. Christy, I doubt you read my blog but if you do our waitress looked like she could be your sister. Same mannerisms and everything. When we left the phone directions to Dellinger Grist Mill took us in the opposite direction of that fun curvy Rattlesnake road.
Dellinger Grist Mill is in Hawk NC. Our GPS didn’t know of a Hawk NC.
We spent a long time lost and looking for this mill! I tried to call to get directions but no one answered the phone. When we finally got there we found Jack Dellinger there ready to tell us all about the mill. He is the fourth generation and it is listed as a historic site. He said he worked for NASA and restored the mill himself.
We contemplated going back to Craggy even though it was now 100% sunny and not ideal for photos. If we went back that way, I wanted to stop at Greybeard and find the Pixie Forest that has been on my “to-see” list for quite some time. With no cell service to help us, I saw a road with the name Roan Mountain on it. I took it. I felt sure we’d pass Elk Falls, Toms Creek Falls or Emerald Villiage. If I had a better sense of direction we may have found them all. We ended up coming to Carvers Gap on our left so that explained why we never saw Elk Falls or Roan Moutain Visitor Center Grist Mill.
The rhododendron were done for the year but I was able to show June where you went and pointed out the grassy balds across from Carvers Gap.
I’m sure I forgot stuff I wanted to write with it being so long before I started typing this post. I will have to say it’s not every friend that will so easily go with the flow from not doing what was planned to an eleven-hour full day of looking for stuff to capture.
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