Throwback Thursday #9 – October 17, 2017

We’re not traveling as much in our fifth wheel anymore so I thought it would be fun to relive some of our most memorable days from previous RV trips.

We spent this day two years ago, October 17, 2017, on scenic mountain roads visiting waterfalls in Nantahalla National Forest in North Carolina, and Sylvan Falls in Georgia.

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Dry Falls near Highlands, NC in the Nantahala National Forest
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Fall Colors in the Nantahala National Forest, North Carolina
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Behind Bridal Veil Falls near Highlands, NC
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Small waterfall beside Hwy 64 between Highlands and Franklin, NC
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Sylvan Falls in Mountain City, GA

There’s more about these and other mountain adventures two years ago at Wandering in the Georgia and North Carolina Mountains

 

 

 

 

 

 

First stop on our Fall Football Road Trip

After enjoying a relaxing summer at home, we are once again on a fall road trip to watch the Georgia Bulldogs play an away football game. This year we are on our way to Oxford, Mississippi to see the Dawgs play the Ole Miss Rebels. But in true Wandering Dawgs fashion, we are not taking a direct route to get there.

We started the trip in Oak Mountain State Park in Pelham, Alabama, a few miles south of Birmingham. This is Alabama’s largest state park and it has something for everyone – mountain bike trails, golf course, lake with a beach, hiking trails, a scenic drive, a beautiful campground and more.

Wandering Dawgs in Oak Mountain State Park Site A28
Wandering Dawgs in Oak Mountain State Park Site A28

Every day Blondie and I walked on the trails around our campground loop.

Early Morning at Tranquility Lake
Early Morning at Tranquility Lake
Moccasin Nature Trail behind our campsite
Moccasin Nature Trail behind our campsite
Early morning walk in the woods
Early morning walk in the woods
Spotted this Heron on our last morning
Spotted this Heron on our last morning

One day we drove to the dead end of Peavine Falls Road on Double Oak Mountain. As we wound our way up the narrow road I was reminded of some of the drives we have made in the Great Smoky Mountains.

This sign was at the parking lot at the dead end at the top of the road
This sign was at the parking lot at the dead end at the top of the road
We had a picnic at the Peavine Falls Overlook
We had a picnic at the Peavine Falls Overlook
View from Peavine Falls Road Overlook
View from Peavine Falls Road Overlook

We enjoyed our stay and were even able to do a little shopping in nearby Pelham and Birmingham before continuing our journey west to our next destination.

Blue Ridge Parkway, Creek Side Camping and Barbeque in North Carolina

After two days of elk watching in Cataloochee Valley we packed a lunch and set out from our campground in Waynesville for a 40 mile drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway in search of fall colors.

The Blue Ridge Parkway is a 469 mile scenic parkway through the southern Appalachian Mountains in Virginia and North Carolina. The northernmost point of the parkway is Mile 0 in Rockfish Gap near Waynesboro, Virginia. The southernmost point is Mile 469 near Cherokee, North Carolina. There are scenic overlooks, picnic areas, hiking trails, and campgrounds all along the way.

Although we have traversed several sections of the Blue Ridge Parkway in the past we had never been on the area in North Carolina north of the Highest Point at Mile 431. On our journey this time we traveled south from  Mile 408 at Mount Pisgah to Maggie Valley at about Mile 455.

The first order of business was a picnic at the Mount Pisgah picnic area at the top of a short paved trail. After lunch under the trees we started our journey south, stopping at several of the scenic overlooks. It was too early in the year for the peak autumn colors but a few of the leaves were beginning to change.

Fall Colors on Blue Ridge Parkway in NC
Fall Colors on Blue Ridge Parkway in NC

Looking Glass Rock got it’s name because sunlight will reflect off the granite when there is water collected on it.

Looking Glass Rock Blue Ridge Parkway in NC
Looking Glass Rock Blue Ridge Parkway in NC

There was beautiful scenery every where we looked.

Beautiful day for a drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway in NC
Beautiful day for a drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway in NC

We found a few more fall colors.

A few fall colors on the Blue Ridge Parkway in NC
A few fall colors on the Blue Ridge Parkway in NC

There are many folktales surrounding the Devil’s Courthouse. It was getting late and we decided to skip the trail to the top.

Devil's Courthouse Blue Ridge Parkway in NC
Devil’s Courthouse Blue Ridge Parkway in NC

The picture on the left was taken 8 years ago when we first stopped at the Highest Point of the Blue Ridge Parkway at Mile 431. The one on the right from this visit.

The photo below is the view from the Highest Point.

Highest Point Blue Ridge Parkway in NC
Highest Point Blue Ridge Parkway in NC

A few clouds rolled in as we continued south,

Blue Ridge Parkway in NC
Blue Ridge Parkway in NC

Our home base for exploring Cataloochee Valley and the Blue Ridge Parkway was Creekwood RV Park a few miles north of Waynesville and Maggie Valley. Our site backed up to a beautiful creek. It was a perfect place to relax after a day of wandering.

Of course we had to try some North Carolina barbeque while were were there. The Heywood Smokehouse in Waynesville was recommended and the spareribs, chicken, and brisket were done to perfection. And it turns out the owners are originally from Georgia!

Heywood Smokehouse in Waynesville, NC
Heywood Smokehouse in Waynesville, NC

Beautiful fall weather, bugling elk, scenic drives, camping beside a creek, and delicious barbeque. It doesn’t get much better than that.