Blog

Road to the North 40

Hiking Mountain View Trail

Spending time at the North 40 is a bit bittersweet. We have this entire wonderful place and Phil still has to work and cannot enjoy it. He rode with me on the trip out and stayed here for 20 hours before flying out to go back to work. ūüôĀ So, as I walked the Mountain … Continue reading Hiking Mountain View Trail

0 comments
Pingue rubberweed

Pingue Rubberweed

I am not sure I have this correctly identified. I is everywhere on the roadsides near White Sulphur Springs in Montana. The leaves don’t look exactly like the pictures I have found online but they are similar and no other flower I can find comes closer to the characteristics of this little clump of flowers. … Continue reading Pingue Rubberweed

0 comments
Coon Tree Loop

Coon Tree Mountain Trail

Today was a very short hike up the right fork of the Coon Tree Trail.  We only hiked to the ridge junction and turned around and hiked down.  Nice day in low 40’s.  The trail was muddy and there were a lot of trees down after the wind and ice storms last month. We passed … Continue reading Coon Tree Mountain Trail

0 comments
Daniel Ridge Loop

Daniel Ridge Loop

Finally! A sunny day on a weekend! We finally got some good weather to go hiking.  The high today was in the mid to upper 40’s and the sun was shining.  That is my favorite hiking weather. Last year, our logged hiking miles were abysmal. It was a rainy year and we had a lot … Continue reading Daniel Ridge Loop

0 comments
Swoon Quilt

Swoon Quilt

Pattern: Swoon by Thimble Blossoms  By: Camille Roskelley Fabric Collection: MODA, “Over the Rainbow” Collection By: Edyta Sitar Thread:  Auril 2370 for piecing and quilting Batting: Quilter’s Dream 80/20 Dimensions: Before Quilting: 95″ x 95″ After Quilting:  92″ x 92″ After Washing and Drying on low in dryer:  85″ x 85″ So, I had a … Continue reading Swoon Quilt

0 comments
Sacajawea Peak

Sacajawea Peak in Bridger Range

A Personally Challenging Hike Stats (Per my AllTrails tracker): Distance: 5.3 Miles Elevation Gain: 2,011′ Difficulty: Difficult Location: From Bozeman, MT take Highway 86 N toward Bridger Canyon.  Drive approximately 20 miles and take Fairy Lake Road on the left.  The trailhead is approximately 7 miles. Be advised that Fairy Lake Road is rutted out … Continue reading Sacajawea Peak in Bridger Range

0 comments
View from top of Mt. Pisgah

Mt. Pisgah

3 mi round-trip Tread Condition: Moderately RoughClimb: Climbs ModeratelyLowest Elevation: 4980Highest Elevation: 5730Total Elevation Gain: 750Configuration: Out-and-backStarting Point: Mount Pisgah Parking Area, Blue Ridge Parkway milepost 407.6

0 comments

ESPN: Thanksgiving in Lake Lure

Article by Ryan McGee of ESPN His Thanksgiving Day spent at Lake Lure and Hendersonville. Highlights from a Wild College Football Rivalry Week

0 comments
Point of View Quilt

Point of View

Quick Project with (nearly) Instant Gratification This block pattern, designed by Terri Vanden Bosch, won the 2016 Accuquilt GO! Block Design contest. It is complicated enough to be show worthy, while at the same time, small enough to complete in a couple of days.  Her fabric choices were not something I would have thought of, … Continue reading Point of View

0 comments

Mt. LeConte, 2017

Trail:  Alum Cave Trip # 27 – November 9 – 22, 2017 Trail: Alum Cave Trail Hiking Time Going Up: 3 hours 7 minutes Hiking Time Coming Down: 2 hours 15 minutes This year we decided to hike up and down Alum Cave Trail. Due to trail closures, we haven’t gotten to hike this trail … Continue reading Mt. LeConte, 2017

0 comments
Grassy Mtn via Trail 119

Grassy Mtn Via Skidway Campground

October 9, 2017 Distance: 5.0 Miles Elevation Gain: 1575 ft. Difficulty: Strenuous (very steep) Park at the back gate boundary of Skidway campground. Follow the forestry road from there all of the way to the top of Grassy Mountain. The road meanders through the forest for awhile and then opens up in a beautiful meadow … Continue reading Grassy Mtn Via Skidway Campground

0 comments
Emilys Wedding Quilt

FINALLY FINISHED!

After 3 years, I have finally finished this quit.  The pattern was found in an issue or Fons & Porter’s Love of Quilting Magazine. I have lost the magazine, so I can’t post the issue of volume number. The name of the pattern is “Emily’s Wedding Quilt” and I think it can be purchased from the … Continue reading FINALLY FINISHED!

0 comments
Skyline Trailhead

Skyline Trail

September 9, 2017 2.0 Miles Round Trip from Exclamation Point – Elevation Gain: 472′ After several years of closure, the Skyline Trail was re-opened in September of 2017. Apparently, the original trail was closed after a toddler fell to its death. ¬†Since then, the trail has been re-routed and fencing was added at the top … Continue reading Skyline Trail

0 comments

A Quilt for Zo√ę

This past summer, I made 2 very colorful quilts for the other 2 grandkids.  I’m trying to find the pictures I took before I can post about them. So, this quilt is for the littlest one of our family.  She has just graduated to a regular bed and loves bright colors. I chose the “Swoon” … Continue reading A Quilt for Zo√ę

0 comments

MTS – Little Sam – Flat Laurel Creek Loop

Park where the Mountains to the Sea Trail intersects Hwy 215 north of the Blueridge Parkway and hike east on the Mountains to the Sea Trail. Hike a little over 2 miles and fork left on Little Sam Knob trail. Hike for approximately 1.5 miles to the intersection of the Flat Laurel Creek Trail and … Continue reading MTS – Little Sam – Flat Laurel Creek Loop

0 comments

Pilot Rock from Pisgah Inn Parking Lot

The idea was to plan a 2 hour hike during the cool morning hours up high somewhere where it wouldn’t be quite as hot. We thought this hike would fill the bill but we were wrong in our memory about the length and the time involved. The hike begins at the Pisgah Inn parking lot … Continue reading Pilot Rock from Pisgah Inn Parking Lot

0 comments

Sluice Boxes State Park

Sluice Boxes State Park is located at 38 Evans Riceville Rd., Belt, MT — Latitude/Longitude: (47.212 / -110.935). The 7.5 mile trail begins at Riceville bridge and hikes along soaring cliffs and precipitous ledges.  Remains of mines, a railroad, and historic cabins line Belt Creek as it makes its way through the canyon carved in limestone. We drove to … Continue reading Sluice Boxes State Park

0 comments
Mountain View Trail

North 40 Hike

Morning hike by myself. I hiked clockwise the Mountain View Trail Loop and the North 40 “T” in 1 hour and 12 minutes. I stopped and took a lot of pictures along the way.  Of course, I had to take pictures of flowers as well as the landscape.  I uploaded the hike on my Ramblr … Continue reading North 40 Hike

0 comments
North 40 Sunrise

Sunrise on June 24, 2017

Well, it’s a few days past the summer solstice, but I finally remembered that I wanted a picture of the sunrise to document how far the sun swings to the north over the Castles.  It looks like the sun goes just to the right of the big knob.

0 comments
Bridger Mountains

Good Morning from the North 40

Good morning Montana!  The temperature at 11 am is 66 degrees and it is a glorious sunny day. The wind is blowing steadily. All of the grasses are beginning to go to seed and it looks so pretty blowing in the breeze. Hopefully, today, we can open the house up.

0 comments
Mt Rushmore

Roadtrip 2017 Mt. Rushmore

Jake and his family wanted to visit the North 40 and in order to make the money work, I drove out with the grandkids and Ash. We drove to Columbia, MO the first day, Oacoma, SD the second day, and had a relatively short drive on the 3rd day to Keystone, SD. We spent the … Continue reading Roadtrip 2017 Mt. Rushmore

0 comments
Crazy Horse

Roadtrip 2017 – Crazy Horse

Crazy Horse Memorial

0 comments

Roadtrip 2017 – Al’s Oasis

Oacoma, South Dakota – Al’s Oasis Al’s Oasis is located in Oacoma, SD.

0 comments
Flat Laurel Creek

Flat Laurel Creek, Art Loeb and MTS Trail Loop

We parked in the grass on the side of the parkway at the intersection of the Art Loeb Trail between the turn off to Black Balsam and the Devil’s Courthouse at approximately mile marker 421.3. We hiked north on the Art Loeb rising over 400′ in the elevation from the parkway .2 miles to the intersection of … Continue reading Flat Laurel Creek, Art Loeb and MTS Trail Loop

0 comments
Mt. Pisgah

Mother’s Day on Mt. Pisgah

We hiked up Mt. Pisgah for Mother’s Day.  It was a sunny day and beautiful, but a bit hazy in the distance from the top.

0 comments

Surprising Flowers

I have probably hiked up Mt. Pisgah trail close to 100 times in my lifetime. Never have I seen the variety of wild flowers that I saw today. I had never seen trillium there before. It is so short lived, that I guess I’ve just never timed it right. Hawthorne was blooming and it usually … Continue reading Surprising Flowers

0 comments
Pisgah

Mt. Pisgah

Another great day hiking up the Mt. Pisgah trail. I passed about 10 people and 1 really big dog. The sun was shining until I got to the top and the clouds had begun to move it. The air was really hazy from the pollen and fire smoke. The rain will be welcome later this … Continue reading Mt. Pisgah

0 comments

Sam’s Knob

From Asheville, follow the Blue Ridge Parkway south for 26.5 miles past the NC 191 Parkway access. Turn right on FR 816 (Black Balsam Road) just past milepost 420; a sign reads ‚ÄúBlack Balsam‚ÄĚ. Follow this road to the end at the parking area. The parking lot gets crowded quickly on weekends, so plan to … Continue reading Sam’s Knob

0 comments
Middle Prong Wilderness

Middle Prong Wanderings

Tailhead: Rough Butt Bald Overlook Blue Ridge Parkway Milepost 425.4 Elevation: 5300′ Park at the Rough Butt Bald Overlook and walk across the Parkway to the Mountains to the Sea Trail. This section of the MTS runs parallel to the Parkway for several hundred yards before it forks right into the Middle Prong Wilderness proper. … Continue reading Middle Prong Wanderings

0 comments
Pisgah Inn Hitching Post

Buck Spring

We were staying at the Inn and wanted to do a small little walk after breakfast. We weren’t in the market for a strenuous hike, and this trail gives the advantage of being able to bite off little bits without and a really big commitment. We started at the hitching post and walked nearly a … Continue reading Buck Spring

0 comments

First Blooms at Rumbling Bald

The past 3 weeks has been unusually warm for February and March. ¬†I have been traveling, so this was the first day I’ve been outside in over a week. The trail at Rumbling Bald in Lake Lure, NC is under 3000′ above sea level, when flowers sprout in western North Carolina,¬†this is where they start. … Continue reading First Blooms at Rumbling Bald

0 comments
Frying Pan Fire Tower

Frying Pan Mtn. Fire Tower

This is a very simple hike. I parked on the parkway by the road that leads to the fire tower. There is a barricade there that keeps unauthorized vehicles on this road. For this hike, you just walk up the road to the fire tower and back down. It is a gentle rise of only … Continue reading Frying Pan Mtn. Fire Tower

0 comments
Buck Springs Trail

Buck Springs Trail

I parked in the first parking lot for Pisgah Mountain off the Blue Ridge Parkway. The Buck Springs trail is easily marked and is very easy for beginners. The overlook is only about 500 feet from the beginning of the trailhead. There are benches there and it is a nice place to sit and read. … Continue reading Buck Springs Trail

0 comments
Buck's T-4

Valentine’s Dinner 2017

While in Big Sky, we reserved a table at Buck’s T-4 Ranch for our Valentine’s dinner. It was awesome, as always. Phil seems to never order anything except Bison tenderloin and he did not disappoint. He ordered Bison tenderloin. ūüôā I, however, stepped out and ordered a wild game pot pie with rabbit and pheasant. … Continue reading Valentine’s Dinner 2017

0 comments
Big Sky Montana

Big Sky 2017

We took a few days and flew to Montana to ski Big Sky to celebrate¬†my 60th birthday. Big Sky Ski Resort has had a lot of snow year and their base was in the neighborhood of 8 feet. As it happened, the weather gave us a bit of a warm up while we were there. … Continue reading Big Sky 2017

0 comments

John Rock

Park at the Pisgah Center for Wildlife Education and the State Fish Hatchery near Brevard. The John Rock trail can be accessed ¬†from either direction from the parking lot. Counterclockwise isn’t quite as steep going up on the rock and the hike along the creek going in is beautiful and serene. The elevation gain is … Continue reading John Rock

0 comments
Chimney Rock

Chimney Rock

It was a sunny day in the upper 30’s to lower 40’s, my favorite hiking weather. ¬†I parked in the upper parking lot and started my hike in the middle. ¬†First, I ¬†climbed the stairs to the Chimney and then onto the Devil’s Head and up to Exclamation Point. It isn’t very far, but almost … Continue reading Chimney Rock

0 comments
Table Rock Trail

Table Rock Trail to Governor’s Rock

This was the first time I’ve hiked the Table Rock Trail since the wildfires in the fall of 2016. ¬†The main trail all the way to Table Rock was opened, but all side trails were closed. ¬†There was no way to get over to Pinnacle Mountain from Table Rock. I’m not sure if¬†the trails leading … Continue reading Table Rock Trail to Governor’s Rock

0 comments
Hickory Nut Falls

Four Seasons Trail to Hickory Nut Falls

Four Seasons Trail:¬†1.54 Miles Round Trip Woodland Trail from lower parking lot to main parking lot Starting Elevation at the Meadows: 1400′ Hickory Nut Falls Trail:¬†2.06¬†Miles Round Trip Branches off Four Seasons Trail to bottom of 400′ waterfall – Elevation 2077′ Breakdown of steps on these 2 sections:¬† 226 steps – Four Seasons Trail to … Continue reading Four Seasons Trail to Hickory Nut Falls

0 comments
Mt. LeConte 2016

Mt. LeConte

This year, it was just me and Phil. We left Thursday morning around 8:45 and drove through Maggie Valley, cut the corner on the parkway to the Oconoluftee Ranger Station going into the GSMNP. Wildfires were burning all around, but most of the s moke stayed below and south of us. You can see the … Continue reading Mt. LeConte

0 comments

Personal Best Week of Hiking

This past week, I hiked more miles than ever in a single week. ¬†Of course, it was LeConte week, so the 16.2 miles going in and out to LeConte helped to rack it up. My total miles hiked this week: 36.1 Total elevation gain this week: 7961′ MT. LECONTE TO NEWFOUND GAP Via The Boulevard … Continue reading Personal Best Week of Hiking

0 comments
Chimney Rock

Fires in Western NC

Our area is experiencing a severe drought. Over the past 10 years, our hemlock trees have fallen¬†to the¬†hemlock woolly adelgid¬†(Adelges tsugae). The dry carcasses of the hemlocks litter the forest floor giving a lot of fuel to any fire danger. There are dead leaves laying in piles and piles everywhere. And, not least, the temperatures … Continue reading Fires in Western NC

0 comments
View of Cold Mountain

Mt. Pisgah

Distance: 3 Miles RT Elevation Change: 750 feet Difficulty: Moderate I got to the trailhead early (before 9 am). It was a cool crisp day and I didn’t see anyone on the trail until I was on my way down. ¬†It was quiet and calm. The fall color is just now showing up. I think … Continue reading Mt. Pisgah

0 comments
Cedar Rock Summit

Cedar Rock Hike

CEDAR ROCK VIA CAT GAP LOOP Distance: 7.1 Miles RT Elevation Gain: 1843′ Difficulty: Moderate Check out more about this hike by clicking here. We began this hike clockwise from the parking lot. The wind was fierce but we didn’t feel the effects of it while we were down in the cove. ¬†The temperature was … Continue reading Cedar Rock Hike

0 comments

The College “M”

The view of Bozeman is breathtaking and it is well worth the hike. Note to self: make sure to carry water. The trail is almost totally exposed and it can get really hot in the summer. I set off with heavy boots and my feet were HOT. The sun is daunting and although this is … Continue reading The College “M”

0 comments
Mt. Hardy

Mt. Hardy

We parked at the Rough Butt Bald overlook and walked across the parkway to the trail.¬†Note to self: ¬†It was really weedy. ¬†Put this hike on the rotation for Labor Day Through Mother’s Day. Another note to self: watch for yellow jacket nests in the trail.

0 comments

Flat Laurel Creek Loop Hike

Total Distance: 5.3 Miles RT Total Elevation Gain: 679 ft. Highest Point: 5935 ft. We parked at the Black Balsam Trailhead parking lot and walked down the road to the Sam Knob Trail to start the loop. 

0 comments

Flat Laurel Creek Loop

Total Distance: 5.3 Miles RT Total Elevation Gain: 679 ft. Highest Point: 5935 ft. We parked at the Black Balsam Trailhead parking lot and walked down the road to the Sam Knob Trail to start the loop.

0 comments

Elk Pasture Gap

We caught the timing right to see the bluets! Their seeds wash into rock crevices and the sides of the trail where they are caught by brush and plants.  They are one of my very favorite wildflowers. Their blooms are no larger than a dime and look like little blue stars.

0 comments

Stoney Bald Overlook to Elk Pasture Gap

This segment of the Mountain to the Sea Trail is fairly easy walk in the woods. This particular day, there were more trillium blooming than I’ve ever seen on a trail. It took longer because I kept stopping to take pictures.

0 comments

Avery Creek Ridge Loop

Today Phil and I hiked the¬†Avery Creek Loop¬†… 10.8 miles, with 3162′ of elevation gain. It was our second time to hike this particular loop. It is a hard hike. We took a couple of PBJ’s for lunch and lots of water.¬†We didn’t really make good time because we had to keep stopping for mountain … Continue reading Avery Creek Ridge Loop

0 comments

Chimney Rock State Park

It was another great day at Chimney Rock. I feel so fortunate that this is practically in my backyard.¬†I keep taking the same pictures each time I go. ¬†I guess I keep thinking that each view is prettier than it was the day before. I’ve walked by these birdhouses for years and not really paid … Continue reading Chimney Rock State Park

0 comments

Two Little Pillowcase Dresses for Summer

0 comments

Easter Bunnies

Pattern: bunny girl in a dotty dressby: Julie Williams Published in: Little Cotton Rabbits (on Ravalry) I fell in love with these little knitted bunnies. I knitted several of them for the little “Grands” for Easter. But, I can’t stop. ¬†I’ll be knitting more of these as times go along with seasonal clothes as the seasons … Continue reading Easter Bunnies

0 comments

Spring at Biltmore

Spring at Biltmore is a flower fanatic’s dreamworld. The gardens are brimming with daffodils, hyacinth, forsythia, tulips and periwinkle, just to name a few. Today, the tulips were up, but they had not quite bloomed out. Maybe next week, I can go back and take tulip pictures. The current exhibit in the mansion and on … Continue reading Spring at Biltmore

0 comments

Redbuds

I guess I’m trying to make up for sitting on my butt all winter, but over the past 8 days, I have hiked 22 miles! ¬†That is 22 MOUNTAIN miles, folks. ¬†My legs feel like noodles. ¬†Going straight up steps or up steep grades isn’t easy and I realize just how much fitness I have … Continue reading Redbuds

0 comments
Avery Creek Loop

Pressley Cove Trail

Pressley Cove Trail is accessed from Avery Creek Road (Forest Service Road #477). Beginning at 2325 ft. of elevation, the trail climbs steeply for 1.1 miles ( 968 ft. elevation gain) to Forest Service Rd #5022. Turn right onto the road and walk for .2 miles to Pressley Gap, elevation 3328 ft.

0 comments

I Counted the Steps!

So, during my workout hike at Chimney Rock State Park,¬†I counted 1322 steps on the main trails leading from the Lower Parking Lot at the ticket booth to the very top at Exclamation Point. ¬†This does not include a few “detours” through the “Subway”and “The Outcroppings.”¬† I had counted the stairs a few years ago, … Continue reading I Counted the Steps!

0 comments

February Ski Trip at the North 40

¬†Bridger Bowl, Bozeman, MT We had an awesome time skiing with friends in Bozeman at The Bridger Bowl. It is approx. an hour drive from the North 40 so we don’t need to pay for accommodations. The ski resort is municipal, owned by the city of Bozeman. Driving up to the resort from our house … Continue reading February Ski Trip at the North 40

0 comments

Chimney Rock

Getting Back in the Swing of Things The beautiful, spring-like weather was very welcome after a busy, rainy winter. We haven’t had good weather on our off days that have allowed us to keep up our hiking routine. The BRP is still closed for the winter, but¬†Chimney Rock is close to home and open. My … Continue reading Chimney Rock

0 comments

The Thomas Divide

The Thomas Divide trailhead is near the NC/TN border on the Smoky Mountains Parkway. It is a gentle trail that runs the ridge from the parkway out to Kanati Fork Junction. The elevation change is gradual and the hike is relatively short. This is a great little hike for small children and newbies.

0 comments
Mt. LeConte TN

MT. LeConte Trip #24

November 12-14, 2015

0 comments
Mule Deer

North Forty, September 2015

Annual September trip to the North Forty. Phil managed to get enough vacation days to string together 9 days. It was Phil’s first extended visit since the house was finished last year. The 2 sofas had been delivered after my last visit out, so we had a nice comfy place to sit. It was a … Continue reading North Forty, September 2015

0 comments
Godspeed

Godspeed

Godspeed /ňą…°…ídňąspiňźd/ interjection, noun 1. an expression of one’s good wishes for a person’s success and safety Word Origin ¬†C15: from God spede may God prosper (you) This word is most, or only appropriate to say to a soldier, sailor, airman, or marine as they start their military journey. ¬†I have used it more in … Continue reading Godspeed

0 comments

SACAJAWEA PEAK

Great hike up Sacajawea Peak. The weather was warm and extremely windy at the top. We were seriously in danger of being blown off the mountain. It was still scary the last 1/4 mile up the spire.

0 comments
Mt. LeConte Lodge

Alum Cave Trail

Taking advantage of the good weather and lower temperatures, we decided to do a day hike up and down Alum Cave Trail on Mt. LeConte. We left early enough to get a parking space in what is usually a very crowded parking lot at the trailhead. We lucked up and there were still a few … Continue reading Alum Cave Trail

0 comments
National Park Pillows

National Park Pillows

Pillows … in honor of the 99th birthday of our National Parks System. The true wealth of our nation lies in our national parks. The amount of volunteer hours it has taken to create and maintain their trail systems is phenomenal. So, to celebrate our love of that, I’ve made 4 national park pillows to … Continue reading National Park Pillows

0 comments
Cold Mountain

Happy Birthday National Park System!

Today is the 99th birthday of our National Park System! Isn’t that just awesome? Thank you, Teddy Roosevelt, for your foresight in protecting our nation’s most beautiful and sensitive landscapes. Although, I take issue with the fact that the progressive death tax was his idea, and that he over-agressively pursued anti-trust laws bringing about the … Continue reading Happy Birthday National Park System!

0 comments

Charlies Bunion

August, 2015 We parked at Newfound Gap and walked the Appalachian Trail to the Jump Off Rock junction where we turned right. The trail out to the rock is short and runs thru the forest.  It is a favorite for day hikers in the Smokys.

0 comments
Bitterroot

June in Montana

Wildflower season in the Northern Rockies is in full bloom late May through June.¬†This year, I got spent several weeks at our house during the peak of the flower season. I walked all over the property with my camera trying to make sure that I cataloged the species there. A¬†Few¬†Notable¬†Flowers I Found: ARROWLEAF BALSAMROOT This … Continue reading June in Montana

0 comments

Elk Pasture Gap

It was another beautiful day on the ridge. The sun dappled thru the trees and it got a little warm. The ferns were so large, they looked like they belonged in a Jurassic Park movie.

0 comments

NC Wildflowers

Spring has sprung here in the mountains and I’m scrambling to get out and photograph as many flowers as possible before they are gone. ¬†So many of the spring flowers bloom only for a few short days! So, here are a few of the flowers I saw today. Bluets Common Blue Violet Star Chickweed Barren … Continue reading NC Wildflowers

0 comments

Freedom Trail

During a recent babysitting trip to Massachusetts, I had the opportunity to walk “The Freedom Trail.” This walk is 2.5 miles long beginning at Boston Commons and ending at Bunker Hill. It is the Cradle of Liberty … the birthplace of American Independence. It was awesome. Although the history of the United States is relatively … Continue reading Freedom Trail

0 comments
Chimney Rock

Chimney Rock

I bought a new camera. Tired of the limitations of the iPhone and point-and-shoot cameras, Phil thought it was time to get a Nikon D3200¬†digital SLR with a couple of lenses. We go to so many beautiful places and now we can get higher quality photos. Today was such a glorious day! I had errands … Continue reading Chimney Rock

0 comments

Big Creek Trail

Park on the Blue Ridge Parkway¬†by the Little Pisgah Ridge Tunnel to access Big Creek Trail, beginning elevation 4720‚Ä≤. The trail descends 2 1/2 miles down to Big Creek, elevation 2976‚Ä≤. The trail is wooded drops down the spine of the ridge with a lot of mountain laurel at the top and hardwoods at the … Continue reading Big Creek Trail

0 comments

Luke’s Losers …

Regarding an opinion piece published in Yahoo Finance, “Why Elizabeth Warren Is A Threat to America‚Äôs Growth,” Luke had some interesting comments. He said … Like Mark Sanford in South Carolina, she is generally despised here, but is somehow able to maintain a constituency.¬† I like to believe that politicians are making progress toward a … Continue reading Luke’s Losers …

0 comments

Greenbriar Cove at Porter’s Creek

Phil and I use Gatlinburg as a jump off point for hiking in the Smoky Mountains. This year, we left the house early in order to get a hike in before check in time at Gatlinburg Inn. We turned off US Hwy 321 into Greenbriar Cove about 5 1/2 miles east of Gatlinburg.¬†We tried to … Continue reading Greenbriar Cove at Porter’s Creek

0 comments
Snowmageddon Cambridge MA

Cambridge Snowmageddon 2015

The Boston area is getting the brunt of storm Juno.¬†The MTA isn’t running and Boston and Cambridge has totally ¬†shut down. The snow will continue throughout the day. I will update this post with snow totals when the snow stops falling. Here are some pictures Luke took just outside his house near downtown Cambridge. You … Continue reading Cambridge Snowmageddon 2015

0 comments

Chimney Rock

This winter, the park has a lot of work going on. New construction will bring the re-opening of two long closed trails. It is great to see money being spent at the park. I couldn’t get to Exclamation Point because there is still some serious ice up there. I made it as far as the … Continue reading Chimney Rock

0 comments

Chimney Rock

This winter, the park has a lot of work going on. New construction will bring the re-opening of two long closed trails. It is great to see money being spent at the park. Here are a few pictures of some the working being done.  

0 comments
Trombatore Trail

Trombotore Trail

Trailhead Parking: Take Hwy 64 east from 1-26 in Hendersonville, NC. About 2 1/2 miles past I-26, turn left on¬†Fruitland Rd. Next, turn left on Old Clear Creek Rd go only a few hundred yards and turn right on Bearwallow Mountain Rd. Follow Bearwallow Mountain Road and after a few miles, you will have to … Continue reading Trombotore Trail

0 comments

Green Knob

We spent Martin Luther King, Jr. Day up on the parkway near Wagon Road Gap on the Green Knob section of the Mountains to the Sea Trail. It was a bluebird day and the temps warmed to the mid 50’s during our hike. The parkway was closed, so we parked at the parking lot at … Continue reading Green Knob

0 comments

Buckhorn Gap

New trails seem to be “trending” early in this new year. One trail we had not tried yet was in The Avery Creek area that¬†is a great place to hike during the winter months when the parkway is closed. Distance: 3.0 miles to Buckhorn Gap Shelter (6 miles RT) Elevation Gain: 1100 feet Difficulty: ¬†Moderate … Continue reading Buckhorn Gap

0 comments

Twin Falls

Twin Falls is located off a .6 mile spur trail from the main Buckhorn Gap Trail. The falls descend from a horseshoe shaped valley. The first water fall you come to on the left is not one of the “twins.” It is pretty, though. Phil took these pictures of the falls. It is well worth … Continue reading Twin Falls

0 comments

Trombatore Trail

Trailhead Parking: Take Hwy 64 east from 1-26 in Hendersonville, NC. About 2 1/2 miles past I-26, turn left on Fruitland Rd. Next, turn left on Old Clear Creek Rd go only a few hundred yards and turn right on Bearwallow Mountain Rd. Follow Bearwallow Mountain Road and after a few miles, you will have to … Continue reading Trombatore Trail

0 comments

Mt LeConte 2014

It was time for our official 2014 trek up Mt. LeConte. Phil’s brother-in-law was our guest this year. We chose to hike Alum Cave Trail. It was reportedly in the best shape and we hoped that it had minimal icy spots. The Thursday hike up was great. It was a warm sunny day in the … Continue reading Mt LeConte 2014

0 comments
Chimney Rock State Park

Chimney Rock in Autumn

Fall is beautiful and it is especially so from the top of Exclamation Point above the Chimney. I caught the light just right on these pictures. ¬†I hope the web doesn’t blur out some of the beauty.

0 comments

Howling Halloween

Our hike to the lodge at Mt. LeConte TN was one for the record books and will go down in Mt. LeConte Lore to be talked about for years to come. Phil and I have a standing yearly reservation for the Thursday and Friday nights the week of Veterans day in November. However, this was … Continue reading Howling Halloween

0 comments

Sacajawea Peak – Bridger Range

Spending a week at the Grassy Mountain Cabins in White Sulphur Springs is something we have loved doing for the past 10 years. In planning our trip this year, the hike up Sacajawea Peak was on the “must do” list. We did this hike 5 or 6 years ago and have wanted to go back and … Continue reading Sacajawea Peak – Bridger Range

0 comments

Elk Pasture Gap

Lions and Tigers and Bears! Oh My! Today, I ran up on some really fresh bear scat. It was actually fairly large. ¬†This trail is fairly heavily traveled, so bears don’t usually hang around. I never heard him so I guess he was long gone. ¬†So, I kept on going without letting it bother me.

0 comments

AQS Quilt Week in Charlotte NC

The American Quilting Society celebrates it’s 30th Anniversary with “Quilt Week” in 5 different venues! The Schedule: Paducah, KY ~ April 23 ‚Äď 26 Charlotte, NC ~ July 30 ‚Äď Aug 2 Grand Rapids, MI ~ Aug 20 ‚Äď 23 Chattanooga, TN ~ Sept 10 ‚Äď 13 Des Moines, IA ~ Oct 1 ‚Äď 4 … Continue reading AQS Quilt Week in Charlotte NC

0 comments

Chimney Rock

I guess it is a good thing that Chimney Rock State Park is so popular. To view the Chimney and get the most out of the park, you have to climb a whole lot of stairs. The forced exercise is all part of the experience. Today, I waited until around 11 am to go the … Continue reading Chimney Rock

0 comments

Pisgah Inn Retreat

Once again, we took a few days and ran away to one of our favorite hide outs, Pisgah Inn. Going to the inn for a few days is a great retreat from the usual busy-ness of our life. We eat all of our meals in the Inn’s restaurant. Their daily specials are exquisite with a … Continue reading Pisgah Inn Retreat

0 comments
Deer at Chimney Rock

Sightings at Chimney Rock

Mom and new little fawn with wobbly legs. Every once in awhile you get come across a neat little creature.  This doe and fawn was so peaceful until I interrupted them.

0 comments

Mt. Cammerer

Mt. Cammerer¬†is¬†also known as Sharp Top or White Top. The Appalachian Trail traverses it’s south slope and is part of the Smoky Mountain National Park system. Elevation 4928′. We began our trek up Mt. Cammerer¬†at the Cosby, TN Campground in the Hiker’s Parking Lot (else you will get a ticket). This adds about 1/2 mile … Continue reading Mt. Cammerer

0 comments

Cedar Rock

Park in the Hatchery Parking Lot and begin the Cat Gap Loop trail hiking counter clockwise. You will walk past Picklesimer Fields. Continue on this trail bearing right toward Cat Gap at¬†the intersection of the shortcut cut-off trail.¬† When you get to Cat Gap, turn sharply to the right on the Art Loeb. In about … Continue reading Cedar Rock

0 comments

Western Storms

This picture was taken from 7th Avenue in Bozeman, MT looking toward the Bridger Mountain Range.

0 comments

We Have Water

We got a call from the builder Sunday. Apparently, the well drillers had spent a few days drilling for water at the spot that Mr. Bandy (Dowser) had indicated that we would find water. The drillers drilled 400 feet and only found 2 gal/minute. That flow isn’t enough. The builder made the call to go … Continue reading We Have Water

0 comments

Mt. Hardy – Green Knob

Tailhead: Park at the Rough Butt Bald Overlook and walk across the Parkway to the Mountains to the Sea Trail. This section of the MTS runs parallel to the Parkway for several hundred yards before it forks right into the Middle Prong Wilderness proper. Rough Butt Bald Overlook Blue Ridge Parkway Milepost 425.4 Elevation: 5300′ … Continue reading Mt. Hardy – Green Knob

0 comments
Biltmore Rose Garden

Sunday at the Biltmore

Living near the Biltmore House in Asheville has it’s advantages. Bloom reports are sent periodically to all season pass holders. This week’s bloom report was all about the roses. They are gorgeous. Walking out of the green houses, you immediately smell their aroma. Your blood pressure lowers and everything slows down. I imagine what it … Continue reading Sunday at the Biltmore

0 comments

Wolfpen Gatehouse Update

Apparently our homeowners association has found an architect to handle the replacement of our gatehouse. It was just a tiny little nothing shack with fancy rock work. Having a high powered architect seems a little “overkill.” But, since the county water department knocked it down, I guess they are paying and our HOA isn’t that … Continue reading Wolfpen Gatehouse Update

0 comments

My Patterns Were Featured

Three of my sewing patterns for dolls were just featured on this week’s newsletter publication from YouCanMakeThis.com! This is huge in the doll clothes market! So excited. You can find my patterns¬†featured on etsy.com, craftsy.com and youcanmakethis.com as well as my own website at bonnetsandbums.com. The next big thing is to get these ebooks on … Continue reading My Patterns Were Featured

0 comments

Memorial Day at White Sulphur Springs

White Sulphur Springs, Montana is a small town with a ¬†population of approximately 960 people as of 2012. The town’s well tended cemetery is located just a block from Main Street. We were in town over the Memorial Day weekend and were humbled by what we saw there. Several hundred flag topped crosses lined the … Continue reading Memorial Day at White Sulphur Springs

0 comments

And So … It Begins

Over 10 years ago, our family decided that we wanted to build on our dream of a small home in the Montana Rocky Mountains. It has taken years, but finally we broke ground on our house yesterday, Phil’s 59th birthday. We kept our start date a secret from our sons until the shovels began to … Continue reading And So … It Begins

0 comments

Happenings in Wolfpen

It was only a matter of time. Eventually, there would be a vehicle that doesn’t fit through the gatehouse at Wolfpen. To enter the community, a visitor must go under the portico of the gatehouse to get to the box that calls the resident who sends a code to the front gate to open. If … Continue reading Happenings in Wolfpen

0 comments
Sam Knob Trail

Flat Laurel Creek Loop

We park in the grass on the side of the parkway at the intersection of the Art Loeb Trail between the turn off to Black Balsam and the Devil’s Courthouse at approximately mile marker 421.3. Go north on the Art Loeb. The trail accents immediately from the parkway rising over 400′ in the elevation from … Continue reading Flat Laurel Creek Loop

0 comments

Middle Prong Wilderness

We parked at the Rough Butt Bald parking lot on the Blue Ridge Parkway at Howard Gap. On the north side of the parkway, travel east on the Mountains to the Sea Trail to the intersection of Buckeye Gap Trail. Turn left onto Buckeye Gap Trail.

0 comments
Mt Pisgah

Mt. Pisgah

A foggy, but quick hike up Mt. Pisgah. Mt. Pisgah Trailhead is located near mile marker 408 on the Blue Ridge Parkway (National Park). It is heavily traveled. Park in the second parking lot, the first is for Buck Spring‚Äôs Trail. This trail continues onto National Forest land to climb to the summit of one … Continue reading Mt. Pisgah

0 comments

Spring Comes to Chimney Rock

After driving home from Greensboro yesterday, I decided to take a short walk through the woods on the Four Seasons Trail to Hickory Nut Falls in Chimney Rock State Park. As it was Good Friday, the park was crowded. Families were out in droves in the park and at the shops in downtown Chimney Rock. … Continue reading Spring Comes to Chimney Rock

0 comments

Mt. Pisgah

A foggy, but quick hike up Mt. Pisgah. Mt. Pisgah Trailhead is located near mile marker 408 on the Blue Ridge Parkway (National Park). It is heavily traveled. Park in the second parking lot, the first is for Buck Spring‚Äôs Trail. This trail continues onto National Forest land to climb to the summit of one … Continue reading Mt. Pisgah

0 comments

Frying Pan Mountain

This is just a little walk up a wide trail / road to the tower from the Blueridge Parkway. ¬†It’s good for little kids or adults that aren’t used to hiking.

0 comments

Big Creek Trail at Little Pisgah Ridge

Park on the Blue Ridge Parkway¬†by the Little Pisgah Ridge Tunnel to access Big Creek Trail, beginning elevation 4720‚Ä≤. The trail descends 2 1/2 miles down to Big Creek, elevation 2976‚Ä≤. The trail is wooded drops down the spine of the ridge with a lot of mountain laurel at the top and hardwoods at the … Continue reading Big Creek Trail at Little Pisgah Ridge

0 comments

Ivestor Gap – Tenant Mtn.

Distance: 5 miles Elevation Gain: 600 feet Difficulty: Easy to Moderate Our usual plan of attack for this hike is to park in the Ivestor Gap Parking Lot and walk the old roadbed to Ivestor Gap. Next, we hike over the top of Tenant Mountain and then onto Black Balsam and back to the road. … Continue reading Ivestor Gap – Tenant Mtn.

0 comments
Pisgah Inn View

Mt. Pisgah

Another quick hike up Mt. Pisgah. Mt. Pisgah Trailhead is located near mile marker 408 on the Blue Ridge Parkway (National Park). It is heavily traveled. Park in the second parking lot, the first is for Buck Spring‚Äôs Trail. This trail continues onto National Forest land to climb to the summit of one of the … Continue reading Mt. Pisgah

0 comments
Black Mtn. USGS Marker

Pressley Cove to Black Mtn. Trail

Total Distance: 5.2 miles round trip Total Elevation Gain: 1809 ft. Difficulty: Strenuous! Sunday, January 9, 2014 It was a bluebird day as the temperature climbed from the low 30’s to the mid 50’s — a great day to be outside in the woods. We accessed Pressley Cove Trailhead¬†on Avery Creek Road (Forest Service Road … Continue reading Pressley Cove to Black Mtn. Trail

0 comments

BRP Walk

In the winter, the park service doesn’t spend the money to plow the snow and melt ice on the Blue Ridge Parkway. They close the gates to all automobile traffic. We access the parkway off Highway 276 15 miles north of Brevard at Wagon Road Gap and park at the parking lot at the top … Continue reading BRP Walk

0 comments
Icy Waterfall

Gatlinburg 2014

Every year, Phil and I celebrate our anniversary in Gatlinburg, TN. We aren’t really big fans of the tacky little shops, but we do enjoy being close to great hiking trails and good food. Since we had gone there on our honeymoon years earlier, we like the nostalgia of going every year. We got to … Continue reading Gatlinburg 2014

0 comments

Newfound Gap to Indian Gap

The 1.7 miles stretch of trail between Newfound Gap and Indian Gap is a gentle walk along the ridge top with views off both sides. The elevation gain isn’t strenuous. I would say that this short trail section would be a beginner’s trail. ¬†

0 comments

Green Knob

Distance: 3 miles Elevation Gain: 816 feet Easy Hiking The Mountains to the Sea Trail crosses the Blue Ridge Parkway several times. One of those spots is just south of Wagon Road Gap. We hike this little trail when we want something quick and easy to get to. It is accessible when the parkway is … Continue reading Green Knob

0 comments
Table Rock State Park

Table Rock

Bluebird Day! Temperature in the upper 30’s and crisp.

0 comments
Bennet Gap - Perry Cove Loop

Perry Cove – Bennett Gap Loop

Elevation Gain 1135′ Length: 4.1 miles Bennet Gap Trail is accessed off Avery Creek Road near Brevard. The trail ascends 1135¬†feet to the gap. We climbed clockwise to the gap to the junction of Perry Cove Trail. Perry Cove Trail descends rapidly back to the road. The first 1/2 mile or so ascends to the … Continue reading Perry Cove – Bennett Gap Loop

0 comments

Bennet Gap Loop

We parked on the Avery Creek Forestry road near Brevard and began our hike clockwise up Bennet Gap Trail. It was a bluebird day with temperatures in the upper 40’s. The beginning of the trail down along the creek was icy, but that soon gave way as we climbed higher. We intersected the Coon Tree … Continue reading Bennet Gap Loop

0 comments

Jake’s Creek

We pieced together a loop that began on Jake’s Creek Trail intersecting Cucumber Gap Trail after only .7 mile. Turn left at the junction. This section of the trail is 2.4 mile with a steady increase in elevation and is moderately strenuous. Cucumber Gap trail dead ends into the Little River Trail that runs 2.4 … Continue reading Jake’s Creek

0 comments
Mt. LeConte, TN

Alum Cave

¬† My ankle has improved so much, that we decided to put it to the test by day hiking Alum Cave Trail all the way to LeConte Lodge and back. The total distance hiked was 11 miles. Total elevation gain is approximately 2560′. It gets a little steep in places. I would rate this trail … Continue reading Alum Cave

0 comments
Sandy on the Trail

Pinnacle Mountain

October hikes in the Blue Ridge Mountains is one of my favorite things to do. Phil has taken this week off and we have decided to spend it at home resting and doing mini-adventures close to home. On Sunday, we drove down to Table Rock State Park and hiked up to Pinnacle Mountain. The Table … Continue reading Pinnacle Mountain

0 comments
Chimney Rock on 911

Spending 911 in the Park

What Better Place to Spend this Solemn Day Listening to the news this morning and remembering 911 was more than I could bear. It has ¬†been 12 years, but seems only like last week. With all of the craziness in the world, I just needed to be outside somewhere in a tranquil setting. What better … Continue reading Spending 911 in the Park

0 comments
View from Pisgah Inn

Weekend Getaway

One of our very favorite places to spend a quiet weekend is the Pisgah Inn located near milepost 405 on the Blue Ridge Parkway. The rooms are old school quaint. There are no phones and no airconditioning. The tiny little bathrooms are circa 1955. The balconies overlook one of the most beautiful views from the … Continue reading Weekend Getaway

0 comments

Pilot Rock

This hike, we pieced together from the Pisgah Inn Parking Lot to the bottom of Pilot Rock. Beginning along the Mountains to the Sea Trail, turn south and go over Little Bald Mountain following the trail down around Pilot Rock.

0 comments
Spiked Lobelia

Cat Gap Loop

This morning Phil and I hiked Cat Gap Loop. Having hiked this trail many times over the years, summer, fall, winter and spring, we were amazed at how muddy it was. ¬†I guess boggy would be a more appropriate term. The trail was so boggy in places that it was really hard to keep our … Continue reading Cat Gap Loop

0 comments

Shut-In Trail: Pisgah to Elk Pasture Gap

Today Phil took another Friday off and we hiked a new section of the Mountains to the Sea Trail. This section merged with the Shut-In Trail where we began at the Pisgah Mountain Trail parking lot and headed north. The trail immediately started up, gaining 300′ feet of elevation in just a few hundred yards. … Continue reading Shut-In Trail: Pisgah to Elk Pasture Gap

0 comments
Hickory Nut Falls

Hickory Nut Gorge

Over the past few days, we have gotten a lot of rain in Western NC. We thought we would drive down to Chimney Rock to check the condition of the river. The creek beside Hwy 64 going down to the gorge had a lot of water and was running really fast. The Rocky Broad River … Continue reading Hickory Nut Gorge

0 comments
Maxwell Creek

Pressley Cove and Maxwell Cove

Last week’s hike around the Avery Creek Drainage left us curious about the forest road toward Maxwell Creek Cove. For this hike, we began at the trailhead for Pressley Cove where we ended our hike last week. About 25 minutes into the hike, we turned left on a foot path. Approximately 200 feet from the … Continue reading Pressley Cove and Maxwell Cove

0 comments
Four Seasons Trail

Hikes, April 8-13, 2013

Monday, Chimney Rock State Park After taking Sunday off, I didn’t want to completely seize up. I ran over to Chimney Rock and did a quick up and down. This time, I counted the steps. I only counted an official step. Not all steps up were official steps. My feet were hurting after Saturday’s 10 … Continue reading Hikes, April 8-13, 2013

0 comments

Avery Creek Loop

The Avery Creek area near Brevard is an area that both Phil and I have driven by our entire lives but never stopped to investigate. We turned right off Hwy 276 just past the rangers station on our way out of Brevard. The dirt road through this low valley has several roadside camping sites, horse … Continue reading Avery Creek Loop

0 comments
Christmas with Daddy

February Trip

0 comments
Gatlinburg

Gatlinburg

It was time for our yearly anniversary trip to Gatlinburg. The drive to Gatlinburg on Friday was difficult. It was 27 degrees when we left our house with freezing rain. It drizzled freezing rain the entire way. Thankfully, Interstate 40 had been pre-treated so the icy spots were minimal. We had good light all the … Continue reading Gatlinburg

0 comments
Mountains to the Sea Trail, Blue Ridge Parkway

Mountains to the Sea Trail

On Sunday, we decided to hike a section of the Mountains to the Sea Trail that runs the ridge line overlooking Avery Creek Basin and the Shining Rock Wilderness. The Parkway was closed due to snow and ice. We could took 276 to the parkway access at the Wagon Road Gap overlook between mile marker … Continue reading Mountains to the Sea Trail

0 comments

Mt. LeConte

The annual trip to Mt. LeConte is logged into memory! Our guests this year included Bo and Kim! It was Kim’s first trip up the mountain and to the Smokies! This trip was full of “firsts!” We hiked up on Trillium. We ran into snow about 2.5 miles in. The higher we got, the deeper … Continue reading Mt. LeConte

0 comments

Dowsing

Phil and I had the pleasure to meet Vernon Bandy, a gifted dowser that has gained national acclaim with his skills. It was such a pleasure just to meet him and spend time watching him at work. Mr. Bandy says that he was born with this “gift” and that he believes it is a “God … Continue reading Dowsing

0 comments

PGA 2012

Phil and I enjoyed attending the PGA Championship in Kiawah Island, SC. We got to see most of the high profile players. The crowd surrounding Tiger was a bit overbearing. The band of groupies swooped in on us on the 16th hole as they followed him from hole to hole. Sitting on the 16th fairway, … Continue reading PGA 2012

0 comments

Unexpected Happenings

On this past Monday morning, I was engrossed in the latest project to complete for the company that contracts my labor, Traders Press¬ģ which is owned by Peregrine Financial Group out of Cedar Falls, Iowa. This is something I have done every day for the past 15 years. Monday 2:00 p.m. I received an email … Continue reading Unexpected Happenings

0 comments
Hiking with Friends

Trillium Trail

It was my first time to hike Trillium. ¬†It’s a big closed in so the views are as great, but the creeks are pretty and the trail is nice. A juvenile bear made his presence known and had become quite a nuisance. ¬†The staff set a trap for him and we heard the trap trip … Continue reading Trillium Trail

0 comments
Sacajawea Peak

Sacajawea Peak

This was our first hike up Sacajawea Peak. ¬†Looking up from the parking lot wasn’t so daunting. However, after we hiked through the woods to the bottom of the scree field, looking up gave me vertigo. ¬†I wasn’t so sure I could hike up such a steep, exposed trail. But, I kept going and I’m … Continue reading Sacajawea Peak

0 comments
The Crew

Mt. LeConte

Alum Cave Trail Our guests were my brother and two of his sons. The weather was crisp and sunny. The two youngsters enjoyed the dining hall the best, I think.  They drank buckets of hot chocolate!

0 comments

Mt. LeConte Via Alum Cave

Phil’s brother in law, Dale hiked in with us this year. ¬†We hiked up Alum Cave trail. ¬† The weather was cool and foggy. We enjoyed a lot of lodge time and hot chocolate.

0 comments

Mt. LeConte Via Alum Cave

LeConte Trip with friends that had never been there! The weather was awesome. We hiked Alum Cave in and out. We also spent a lot of time with the Llamas. They are so soft but don’t care much for attention. ¬†And … they bite!

0 comments

LeConte Via Rainbow Falls Trail

¬† Distance: 5.4 Miles One Way Elevation Gain: 1685 Feet Starting from Light 8 in Gatlinburg, turn onto Historic Nature Trail / Airport Road. After driving 0.7 miles veer right onto Cherokee Orchard Road, upon which you’ll enter into Great Smoky Mountain National Park. After driving another 2.2 miles you’ll enter the one-way Cherokee Orchard … Continue reading LeConte Via Rainbow Falls Trail

0 comments

Mt. LeConte via Alum Cave

We hiked Alum Cave in and out. ¬†My brother and his wife went with us and it was the first time we have ever taken a trip together. Phil had to sit on an inverted bucket the whole time, and he didn’t like that. I thought it was funny. Anyway. ¬†It was totally awesome.

0 comments

Art Loeb Trail – Black Balsam & Tenant Mtn

Our usual plan of attack for this hike is to park in the Ivestor Gap Parking Lot and walk the old roadbed to Ivestor Gap. Next, we hike over the top of Tenant Mountain and then onto Black Balsam and back to the road. There is a 1/4 mile walk down the road back to … Continue reading Art Loeb Trail – Black Balsam & Tenant Mtn

0 comments

Art Loeb: Graveyard Ridge Loop

This section of the Art Loeb Trail begins on the right of F.R. 816 at the Black Balsam parking area 0.8 mile north of the Blue Ridge Parkway. For the first 10 yards, the Mountains to the Sea Trail shares the same trail before it descends to the right. Staying on the Art Loeb, we … Continue reading Art Loeb: Graveyard Ridge Loop

0 comments
Indian Gap

AT: Newfound Gap to Indian Gap

The Appalachian Trail crosses the Smoky Mountain Parkway at Newfound Gap. Leaving the gap and hiking north on the AT takes you to the junction of the Boulevard Trail up Mt. LeConte to the lodge. Phil and I have taken this trail more times than I can count. This day, we decided to take a … Continue reading AT: Newfound Gap to Indian Gap

0 comments
Avery Creek Loop

Avery Creek Loop

Pressley Cove : 1.1 FR #5098: .2 Black Mountain: 5.1 Buckwheat Knob:  1.5 Bennett Gap: 2.9 This is a VERY HARD hike.  What makes it hard is the elevation gain … going down hill … and having to re-climb the same 500 feet … over and over. In my opinion, it is easier to hike counter-clockwise. … Continue reading Avery Creek Loop

0 comments
Bearwallow Mtn. Trail

Bearwallow Mtn.

Location The trailhead is at Bearwallow Gap, located at the crest of Bearwallow Mountain Road where the road surface turns from gravel to pavement. Park on the graveled area on the shoulder of the road. Directions from Downtown Asheville Take I-240 to US-74 Alt East toward Bat Cave. Stay on US-74 Alt for about 12.5 … Continue reading Bearwallow Mtn.

0 comments
Black Mountain Trail

Black Mountain Trail

The trailhead is located at a small parking lot next to the Pisgah Forest Ranger Station on US 276, 1.4 miles north of the junction with Hwy 280. Begin walking on the gravel road beside the fence past the sign for the trailhead for 0.2 miles where Black Mountain Trail leaves the road and forks … Continue reading Black Mountain Trail

0 comments

Blue Ridge Parkway: Wagon Rd Gap to Pisgah Inn

In the winter, the park service doesn’t spend the money to plow the snow and melt ice on the Blue Ridge Parkway. They close the gates to all automobile traffic. We access the parkway off Highway 276 15 miles north of Brevard at Wagon Road Gap and park at the parking lot at the top … Continue reading Blue Ridge Parkway: Wagon Rd Gap to Pisgah Inn

0 comments
Pisgah Inn Hitching Post

Bucks Spring Trail

This trail travels from the back of the Pisgah Inn down to Hw6 276 just above the pink beds (1.5 miles from the Cradle of Forestry). The entire trail is listed as 6.2 miles one way. We have never done the entire trail. However, it is a very nice walk before or after dinner at … Continue reading Bucks Spring Trail

0 comments

Buckhorn Gap

Trail Information Buckhorn Gap Trailhead lies just 2.6 miles off Hwy 276 on Avery Creek Rd. The road is narrow and there is only room for 4 or 5 cars to park. The trail descends about 50 or 60 feet in elevation and follows a contour line just above the creek and is open to … Continue reading Buckhorn Gap

0 comments
Cedar Rock

Cat Gap Loop

This is actually an easy and quick way to get over 1 thousand feet of vertical. The trailhead begins at the fish hatchery near Brevard, NC. Many campsites are virtually within a few feet of the trail and some are very close to the trailhead along the Davison River. The hike can be clockwise or … Continue reading Cat Gap Loop

0 comments

Cedar Rock Summit

Park in the Hatchery Parking Lot and begin the Cat Gap Loop trail hiking counter clockwise. You will walk past Picklesimer Fields. Continue on this trail bearing right toward Cat Gap at¬†the intersection of the shortcut cut-off trail.¬† When you get to Cat Gap, turn sharply to the right on the Art Loeb. In about … Continue reading Cedar Rock Summit

0 comments

Chimney Rock State Park

Trails Four Seasons Trail: 1.54 Miles Round TripWoodland Trail from lower parking lot to main parking lot¬†‚Äď Elevation Gain: 354‚Ä≤ Hickory Nut Falls Trail: 2.06¬†Miles Round TripBranches off Four Seasons Trail to bottom of 400‚Ä≤ waterfall ‚Äď Elevation Gain: 417‚Ä≤ Visitor‚Äôs Parking Lot to Exclamation Point: 1.1 Miles RT ‚ÄstElevation Gain:¬†558‚Ä≤ Skyline Trail: 2.0 Miles … Continue reading Chimney Rock State Park

0 comments

College “M”

The College “M” trail is a short but steep hike almost within the city limits of Bozeman. It starts at the nose of the Bridger Mountains. It climbs up the first peak to an area where Montana State University students have constructed a large “M” that can be seen for miles. The view of Bozeman … Continue reading College “M”

0 comments

Coon Tree Loop

Phil and I have been driving by the Coon Tree Picnic area on Hwy 276 for over 40 years! It is only this year (2013) that we have become interested in hiking around this area. The Coon Tree Picnic area has a nice safe parking lot next to bathrooms with flushing toilets. It is a … Continue reading Coon Tree Loop

0 comments
Daniel Ridge Loop

Daniel Ridge Loop

This trail is easy to get to in winter months when the parkway is closed. The trail begins on a gravel road for the first .1 mile, crossing a new “bridge to nowhere” then forks left at a carsonite sign. The trail follows the creek for the first half of the loop, passing waterfalls and … Continue reading Daniel Ridge Loop

0 comments

PISGAH PARKING LOT TO ELK PASTURE GAP (MTS)

Around 1890, the Shut-In trail was created by George W. Vanderbilt to link his Biltmore home with his hunting and outdoor lodge at Buck Springs (Near the current Pisgah Inn). While many think of this trail as following the Blue Ridge Parkway, it’s actually the other way around, since the parkway wasn’t built until the … Continue reading PISGAH PARKING LOT TO ELK PASTURE GAP (MTS)

0 comments

Frying Pan Mountain Tower

The hike departs from a grassy parking area just off the Blue Ridge Parkway at MP 409.6, several miles south of Mt Pisgah. (Compared to other popular hikes on the Parkway, like Black Balsam Knob and the uber-popular Graveyard Fields waterfalls, the hike‚Äôs understated trailhead is easy to miss. Park off the Parkway and don‚Äôt … Continue reading Frying Pan Mountain Tower

0 comments
Grassy Mtn via Skidway

Grassy Mountain, MT

Grassy Mountain is located near White Sulphur Springs, Montana just off Highway 12. There are several ways to hike to the top of Grassy Mountain. Homeowners access route from Mountainview Trail Turn right off Shindle Rd onto Mountainview Trail. Drive approx. 2 miles to the community access point. From this entrance, you will walk through … Continue reading Grassy Mountain, MT

0 comments
MTS Trail to Green Knob

Green Knob Near Wagon Road Gap

The Mountains to the Sea Trail crosses the Blue Ridge Parkway several times. One of those spots is just south of Wagon Road Gap. We hike this little trail when we want something quick and easy to get to. It is accessible when the parkway is closed. The trail is less than 1/2 mile from … Continue reading Green Knob Near Wagon Road Gap

0 comments

Jakes Creek – Cucumber Gap – Little River Trail

Leaving Gatlinburg and traveling south on Smoky Mtn. Parkway take a right at the ranger’s station. Drive a few miles and turn left into Elkmont. Follow the signs to Jake’s Creek Trail. We pieced together a loop that began on Jake’s Creek Trail intersecting Cucumber Gap Trail after only .7 mile. Turn left at the … Continue reading Jakes Creek – Cucumber Gap – Little River Trail

0 comments

John Rock Loop

Park at the Pisgah Center for Wildlife Education and the State Fish Hatchery near Brevard. The John Rock trail can be accessed  from either direction from the parking lot. If you are hiking counter clockwise, you will take the Cat Gap Bypass and follow that until the John Rock trail intersects at the gap.  Turn … Continue reading John Rock Loop

0 comments

Jump Off via Newfound Gap

Description taken from the High in the Smokys website. The hike to the Jump Off begins from the Newfound Gap parking area. Hikers will travel eastbound along the Appalachian Trail to reach this rock outcropping. The steady climb over the course of the first two miles of this hike will quickly leave the crowds behind … Continue reading Jump Off via Newfound Gap

0 comments

Big Creek Trail @ Little Pisgah Ridge

Park on the Blue Ridge Parkway¬†by the Little Pisgah Ridge Tunnel to access Big Creek Trail, beginning elevation 4720′. The trail descends 2 1/2 miles down to Big Creek, elevation 2976′. The trail is wooded drops down the spine of the ridge with a lot of mountain laurel at the top and hardwoods at the … Continue reading Big Creek Trail @ Little Pisgah Ridge

0 comments

Little Sam Knob – Flat Laurel Creek Loop

Park where the Mountains to the Sea Trail intersects Hwy 215 north of the Blueridge Parkway and hike east on the Mountains to the Sea Trail. Hike a little over 2 miles and fork left on Little Sam Knob trail. Hike for approximately 1.5 miles to the intersection of the Flat Laurel Creek Trail and … Continue reading Little Sam Knob – Flat Laurel Creek Loop

0 comments

Middle Prong Wilderness Loop

We park at the Rough Butt Bald parking lot on the Blue Ridge Parkway at Howard Gap. On the north side of the parkway, travel east on the Mountains to the Sea Trail to the intersection of Buckeye Gap Trail. Turn left onto Buckeye Gap Trail. The Buckeye Gap Trail has recently seen serious maintenance … Continue reading Middle Prong Wilderness Loop

0 comments

Mountains to the Sea

Interactive Map of Mountains to the Sea Trail Although the trail is still incomplete, the Mountains to the Sea Trail is North Carolina’s longest trail.¬†When completed, it will be over 900 miles long. Starting at Clingman’s Dome (the highest point in Tennessee and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park). It travels over Mount Mitchell (the … Continue reading Mountains to the Sea

0 comments

Mt. LeConte Via Rainbow Falls

Starting from Light 8 in Gatlinburg, turn onto Historic Nature Trail / Airport Road. After driving 0.7 miles veer right onto Cherokee Orchard Road, upon which you’ll enter into Great Smoky Mountain National Park. After driving another 2.2 miles you’ll enter the one-way Cherokee Orchard Loop Road. After driving roughly 0.6 miles on the loop, … Continue reading Mt. LeConte Via Rainbow Falls

0 comments

MP 420 Maintenance Trail

Near MP 420 on the Blue Ridge Parkway across from the Black Balsam Road entrance, there is a short little maintenance trail that runs parallel to the road. The trail is easy and has a really nice spot 5 minutes from the car to sit on the rocks and have a picnic. The views are … Continue reading MP 420 Maintenance Trail

0 comments

Mt. LeConte Lodge to Myrtle Point

Many LeConte visitors get up early and walk out to Myrtle Point to see the sunrise. ¬†It really is spectacular and well worth seeing. Walk up the steps from the Lodge to the trail and turn left. ¬†Follow the trail past the shelter. ¬†Make sure you bear right at the Boulevard trail junction. Follow the … Continue reading Mt. LeConte Lodge to Myrtle Point

0 comments

Mt. LeConte via The Boulevard

Trail Facts The Boulevard Trail is longest route to the summit of Mount Le Conte (elev. 6,593¬†ft (2,010¬†m); 2,010¬†m) The path follows the¬†Appalachian Trail¬†for 2.7 miles (4.3¬†km), between Newfound Gap and¬†Charlie’s Bunion Never during the hike does the trail dip below 5,000¬†feet (1,500¬†m) The trailhead is located at Newfound Gap, off U.S. Highway¬†441 (Newfound Gap … Continue reading Mt. LeConte via The Boulevard

0 comments
Mt. LeConte, TN

Mt. LeConte via Alum Cave Trail

In the Great Smoky Mountains National Park The Alum Cave Trail (also referred to as Alum Cave Bluff Trail) is an American hiking trail in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, in Sevier County, Tennessee. The trail ascends Mount Le Conte, the “tallest” (and sixth highest) mountain east of the Mississippi River and passes by … Continue reading Mt. LeConte via Alum Cave Trail

0 comments

Mt. Cammerer

Mt. Cammerer¬†is¬†also known as Sharp Top or White Top. The Appalachian Trail traverses it’s south slope and is part of the Smoky Mountain National Park system. Elevation 4928′. ¬†Parking Lot Elevation: 2250′ Low Gap Trail: 2.9 miles One Way We began our trek up Mt. Cammerer¬†at the Cosby, TN Campground in the Hiker’s Parking Lot … Continue reading Mt. Cammerer

0 comments
Mt Hardy

Mt. Hardy

Park in the pull off on the west side of highway 215, 0.45 mile north of the Blue Ridge Parkway. There is room here for a half dozen or more cars. A trail heads into the greenery right from this lot, but do not take this trail. Get back onto the highway, and walk about … Continue reading Mt. Hardy

0 comments
Mt. Pisgah Trailhead

Mt. Pisgah

On the Blue Ridge Parkway National Park Mt. Pisgah Trailhead is located near mile marker 408 on the Blue Ridge Parkway (National Park). It is heavily traveled. Park in the second parking lot, the first is for Buck Spring’s Trail. This trail continues onto National Forest land to climb to the summit of one of … Continue reading Mt. Pisgah

0 comments

North 40

The North 40 perimeter loop circles our house on Mountain View Trail. One time around the perimeter is 1.1 miles and climbs down and out of 2 deep draws. The mid point roadside elevation is approximately 6510′. North Property 40 Loop Distance: 1.3 Mile¬†Loop Elevation Change: 230′ Difficulty: Moderate to Strenuous Mountainview Trail Upper Property … Continue reading North 40

0 comments
Bennet Gap - Perry Cove Loop

Perry Cove – Bennett Gap Loop

Bennet Gap Trail is accessed off Avery Creek Road near Brevard. The trail ascends 1135¬†feet to the gap. We climbed clockwise to the gap to the junction of Perry Cove Trail. Perry Cove Trail descends rapidly back to the road. The first 1/2 mile or so ascends to the ridge top and the majority of … Continue reading Perry Cove – Bennett Gap Loop

0 comments

Pilot Rock

This hike, we pieced together from the Pisgah Inn Parking Lot to the bottom of Pilot Rock. Beginning along the Mountains to the Sea Trail, turn south and go over Little Bald Mountain following the trail down around Pilot Rock. It is steep going down, so expect to get tired coming back up. Some of … Continue reading Pilot Rock

0 comments

Pinnacle Mountain Trail

This trail is a fairly strenuous 3.3 miles (one way) trail. Before starting, you should register at the Nature Center. The Pinnacle Mountain Trail begins at the Nature Center. You will take the Carrick Creek Trail to the left when you get to the sign for Carrick Creek and Table Rock trails. You will follow … Continue reading Pinnacle Mountain Trail

0 comments
Porters Creek

Porter’s Creek

Turn right on¬†Greenbriar Road at Park Entrance sign off US Hwy 321 5.9 miles east¬†of Gatlinburg. Continue on Greenbriar Road 4.1 miles to end of loop. Look for trail and trail marker. PORTERS CREEK TRAIL The gravel roadbed ascends to the historic site, John Messer’s Barn built in 1875. The barn is located just off … Continue reading Porter’s Creek

0 comments

Pressley Cove Trail to Pressley Gap

Pressley Cove Trail is accessed from Avery Creek Road (Forest Service Road #477). Beginning at 2325 ft. of elevation, the trail climbs steeply for 1.1 miles¬†( 968 ft. elevation gain) to Forest Service Rd #5022. Turn right onto the road and walk for .2 miles to Pressley Gap, elevation 3328 ft. Some of our Pressley … Continue reading Pressley Cove Trail to Pressley Gap

0 comments

Rumbling Bald

The Rumbling Bald trail in Hickory Nut Gorge isn’t quite finished yet. At present, it is developed for the first mile with a wide gravel trail through the woods.¬†The rest of the loop is there, so we walked it all the way around, but it is a little rough and muddy in some areas. Some … Continue reading Rumbling Bald

0 comments

Sacajawea Peak

A Personally Challenging Hike From Bozeman, MT take Highway 86 N toward Bridger Canyon. ¬†Drive approximately 20 miles and take Fairy Lake Road on the left. ¬†The trailhead is approximately 7 miles. Be advised that Fairy Lake Road is rutted out badly. You will need a vehicle with a lot of clearance and 4WD is … Continue reading Sacajawea Peak

0 comments
Sam Knob

Sam’s Knob

Directions From Asheville, follow the Blue Ridge Parkway south for 26.5 miles past the NC 191 Parkway access. Turn right on FR 816 (Black Balsam Road) just past milepost 420; a sign reads “Black Balsam”. Follow this road to the end at the parking area. The parking lot gets crowded quickly on weekends, so plan … Continue reading Sam’s Knob

0 comments

Shut-In Trail

Around 1890, the Shut-In trail was created by George W. Vanderbilt to link his Biltmore home with his hunting and outdoor lodge at Buck Springs (Near the current Pisgah Inn). While many think of this trail as following the Blue Ridge Parkway, it’s actually the other way around, since the parkway wasn’t built until the … Continue reading Shut-In Trail

0 comments

Stony Bald Overlook to Elk Pasture Gap

This segment of the Mountain to the Sea Trail is fairly easy walk in the woods. This particular day, there were more trillium blooming than I’ve ever seen on a trail. It took longer because I kept stopping to take pictures. Some of our MTS from Stony Bald Hikes:

0 comments
Table Rock State Park

Table Rock State Park

Table Rock State Park has an extensive trail system and is the access point to the Foothills Trail. The trails are as follows (not round trip): Nature Center – beginning – elevation 1160′ Carrick Creek Loop – 1.9 Miles – Mill Creek Pass – .6 Mile Pinnacle Mountain Trail – 4.1 Miles – elevation 3425′ … Continue reading Table Rock State Park

0 comments

Thomas Divide Trail to Kanati Fork Junction

The Thomas Divide trailhead is near the NC/TN border on the Smoky Mountains Parkway. It is a gentle trail that runs the ridge from the parkway out to Kanati Fork Junction. The elevation change is gradual and the hike is relatively short. This is a great little hike for small children and newbies. Some of … Continue reading Thomas Divide Trail to Kanati Fork Junction

0 comments
Trombatore Trail

Trombatore Trail

Trailhead Parking: Take Hwy 64 east from 1-26 in Hendersonville, NC. About 2 1/2 miles past I-26, turn left on¬†Fruitland Rd. Next, turn left on Old Clear Creek Rd go only a few hundred yards and turn right on Bearwallow Mountain Rd. Follow Bearwallow Mountain Road and after a few miles, you will have to … Continue reading Trombatore Trail

0 comments

Near Livingston, MT

Just a neat little building that had been cleaned up and re-stained.  It was just sitting there all lonely on the backside of the Bridger Mountains near Livingston, MT. There are many old churches and schoolhouses like this one scattered through the west. Over the past 15 years, it appears that many of them have … Continue reading Near Livingston, MT

0 comments

Big Sky Late Spring

On a recent visit, we drove up to the Big Sky Resort. The large snowpack is hanging around, it would appear. The sun is bright and warm.  

0 comments
Flame Aza;ea

Flame Azalea

The Flame Azalea is the most dramatic of all azalea and is found in the wild in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Some of the bushes are over 7 feet high and can spread as much as 8 feet. Like most of the flowering plants in the Blue Ridge, it’s blooms are relatively short-lived.

0 comments

Woodland Sunflower

The top of Mt. Leconte, Tennessee is covered in these flowers during the summer months. Apparently, they like that high sunny climate.

0 comments

Periwinkle

Periwinkle: This picture was taken on April 8, 2013 at the beginning of the Four Seasons Trail at Chimney Rock State Park. This was the first time I have spotted it blooming in Western North Carolina. It is such a simple little flower. So very pretty.

0 comments

Bluets

Bluets are my favorite wild flower. These tiny little stars bloom out of cracks and crevices on woodland trails in Western North Carolina. You can find them on almost every trail in the western part of the state during their blooming season.  They are happy little flowers that are tenaciously prolific.  They bloom and reseed … Continue reading Bluets

0 comments
Wood Anemone

Wood Anemone

The Wood Anemone is a member of the Buttercup Family. The flower is approximately 1″ in diameter,white and sometimes pink on the reverse side. Anemone quinquefolia is an early-spring flowering plant in the genus Anemone, native to North America. It is commonly called Wood Anemone, like Anemone nemorosa, a closely related European species. The American … Continue reading Wood Anemone

0 comments
Wild Geranium

Wild Geranium

I was surprised to find that Wild Geraniums grow wild in Western NC! The leaf is classic geranium shape. The bloom is a bit more delicate with less petals and a single bloom on each stalk.

0 comments
Star Chickweed

Star Chickweed

The pictures of this flower are a little ambiguous.  I think it is a star chickweed. White 5 petal starlike flowers about the size of a dime in clusters at the top of an erect stem and rising from the leaf axils. The petals are incised half their length or more so that the flower … Continue reading Star Chickweed

0 comments

Dwarf Crested Iris

See Iris Cristata A low, bearded Iris of southern and midwestern wooded uplands. It is fragrant and grows in peaty soils and pine barrens from Maryland southward. A single, violet-blue flower with 6 spreading petal parts at the top of a short slender stalk. The bloom is about 2 1/2″ wide with 3 broad petal … Continue reading Dwarf Crested Iris

0 comments
Hyacinth

Hyacinth

Hyacinth Triteleia grandiflora See Wild Hyacinth I found a few pictures online that have this flower classified in the hyacinth family. It could be misinformation, however.  I made the final specification based on the shape of the leaves and blooms. We found them sparsely populating our property mainly in the more arid section.

0 comments
Mountain Bluebell

Mountain Bluebell

See Bluebell The small, delicate bluebell seems to be hardy in arid rocky dirt. The leaf is sage colored.

0 comments
Pasque Flower

Pasqueflower

Pasque Flower (or pasqueflower), wind flower, prairie crocus, Easter Flower, and meadow anemone. See Pasque Flower These little flowers look like a wild tulip. The insides are white with purple outer shells. ¬†We found these growing in close proximity to the base of Douglas Fir trees. I don’t know if there is a symbiotic relationship … Continue reading Pasqueflower

0 comments
Wild Phlox

Phlox (Woodland Phlox)

See Woodland Phlox The blooms of Woodland Phlox make this easily identifiable. It grows in clumps all around our property with white, pink or purple blooms. Phlox divaricata (wild blue phlox, woodland phlox, wild sweet william) is a species of flowering plant in the family Polemoniaceae, native to forests and fields in eastern North America. … Continue reading Phlox (Woodland Phlox)

0 comments
Pineappleweed

Pineapple Weed

See Pineapple Weed I am not sure I have this flower identified correctly. My picture matches several online pictures, but the wiki pics must be taken after the petals fall off.

0 comments
Shooting Star

Shooting Star

Shooting Star (Dodecatheon) Common names include shooting star, American cowslip, mosquito bills, mad violets, and sailor caps.

0 comments

Turk’s-cap Lily

It’s tall flowering stem divides into several drooping bright orange flowers. The green streak a the base of each flower segment for a green “star”. Each flower is approximately 2 1/2″ long with recurved petals and petal-like sepals. The Turk’s-cap Lily blooms between July and September and is found in wet bottomland and woods in … Continue reading Turk’s-cap Lily

0 comments
Southern Harebell

Southern Harebell

Campanula divaricata Рa.k.a. Southern Harebell, Small Bonny Bellflower, Southern Bellflower, Southern Bluebell. Southern Harebell is a many-branched, somewhat weak-stemmed plant with many dangling, small, bell-shaped blue flowers.

0 comments
Barren Strawberry

Barren Strawberry

A low growing strawberry like plant with several yellow flowers on a leafless flower stalk extending from a bed of evergreen leaves. It has 5 petals 3 to 6 pistals and many stamens. Foliage divided into 3 wedge shaped, toothed, 1-2″ leaves. Height: 3-8″

0 comments

Hawthorne

The common name of this Hawthorne honors the Biltmore Estate here in Western North Carolina where early studies of hawthorns were conducted.  Small tree with irregular crown, thicket forming shrub. Has 5/8″ flowers with white petals. Crataegus

0 comments

Rhododendron

Catawba Rhododendron “Mountain-rosebay” “Purple-laurel” Evergreen small tree thicket forming shrub with broad, rounded crown and spectacular displays of large clusters of purplish blossoms. Height: 20′Leaves: 3-6″ thick and leathery elliptical, blunt at tip and rounded at baseFlowers are 2 1/4″ wide with bell shaped corolla or 5 rounded lobes. They grown on rocky slopes and … Continue reading Rhododendron

0 comments

Fringetree

“Old-man’s-beard” Shrub or small tree with short trunk, oblong and narrow crown with showy masses of fragrant lacy, white, flowers. You can smell the sweet blooms from 1/4 mile away. Leaves: 4-8″ Narrow, ellipticalHeight: 30′Flowers: 1″ long with delicate corolla of 4 narrow whitish lobes with purple dots inside at the base. Many of these … Continue reading Fringetree

0 comments

Buttercup

The Common Buttercup is a tall branchy plant with glossy yellow flowers that “cup” up.The flowers are about 1″ in diameter and have 5 petals. 1-4″ basal leaves.¬†

0 comments

Common Winter Cress

0 comments

Dandelion

0 comments

Fescue

0 comments
Strawberry

Wild Strawberry

Fragaria /fr…ôňą…°…õ…ôri…ô/ is a genus of flowering plants in the rose family, Rosaceae, commonly known as strawberries for their edible fruits. There are more than 20 described species and many hybrids and cultivars. The most common strawberries grown commercially are cultivars of the garden strawberry, a hybrid known as Fragaria √ó ananassa. Strawberries have a … Continue reading Wild Strawberry

0 comments

Swamp Dewberry

Rubus hispidus, with the common names swamp dewberry, bristly dewberry, bristly groundberry, groundberry, hispid swamp blackberry or running swamp blackberry, is North American species of dewberry in the rose family.The plant grows in moist or sometimes dry soils, ditches, swales or open woods in central and eastern North America, from Ontario and Minnesota east to … Continue reading Swamp Dewberry

0 comments
Wild Oats

Wild Oats

0 comments
Bitterroot

Bitterroot

Bitterroot was Adopted as the State flower of Montana in 1895 Botanical name: Lewisia rediviva and Bitterroot Sand Rose Also called ‚Äúthe resurrection flower‚ÄĚ Fun Fact: In 1805, Bitterroot was first discovered by Meriwether Lewis of the historical Lewis and Clark expedition; thus, the genus name of the flower, ‚ÄúLewisia‚ÄĚ In 1893, after the famous … Continue reading Bitterroot

0 comments
Grass of Parnassus

Grass of Parnassus

0 comments
Jewel Weed

Jewel Weed

Featured Picture Found on Alum Cave Trail, August 29, 2015

0 comments
Bottle Gentian

Bottle Gentian

Gentiana andrewsii (bottle gentian, closed gentian, or closed bottle gentian) is a herbaceous species of flowering plant in the Gentian family Gentianaceae. Plants are native to northeastern North America from the Dakotas to the East Coast and bloom in late summer (August‚ÄďOctober). The flowers are 2 to 4¬†cm long, typically a rich blue color and bottle shaped with closed … Continue reading Bottle Gentian

0 comments
Sunflower

Appalachian Sunflower

Found on Alum Cave Trail, August 29, 2015

0 comments

Bloodroot

Bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis) Herbaceous flowering perennial that is also known as bloodwort, redroot, red puccoon, and sometimes parson. It’s juice is red and poisonous. I see these blooms on almost every trail here in the western part of N.C.  “Bloodroot grows from 20 to 50 cm (7.9 to 19.7 in) tall. It has one large basal leaf, up to … Continue reading Bloodroot

0 comments

Painted Trillium

Trillium undulatum, the painted trillium, is a wildflower of the genus trillium found from Ontario in the north to northern Georgia in the south and from Michigan in the west to Nova Scotia in the east.[2][4] It is also known as painted lady or trille ondul√©. It demands strongly acidic, humus-rich soils and tends to … Continue reading Painted Trillium

0 comments

Purple (or Red) Trillium

Trillium erectum, also known as red trillium,[3] wake-robin, purple trillium,[4] Beth root, or stinking Benjamin,[5] is a speciesof flowering plant native to the east and north-east of North America. It is a spring ephemeral, an herbaceous perennial whose life-cycle is synchronised with that of the deciduous forests where it lives. This plant grows to about 40 cm (16 in) in height with a spread of 30 cm (12 in), and can tolerate extreme cold in winter, … Continue reading Purple (or Red) Trillium

0 comments

Trillium grandiflorum

Trillium grandiflorum is a perennial that grows from a short rhizome and produces a single, showy white flower atop a whorl of three leaves. These leaves are ovate (i.e., egg-shaped) in outline with pointed tips. They lack petioles (or have extremely short ones) and measure 12‚Äď20 cm long by 8‚Äď15 cm wide (5-8 in long by 3‚Äď6 in width), with very prominently engraved venation. The leaves and the … Continue reading Trillium grandiflorum

0 comments

Little Sweet Betsy

Earliest to Emerge in WNC Trillium cuneatum, the little sweet Betsy, is a flowering perennial plant which is native to the southeastern United States, with a few scattered populations naturalized in the midwestern part of the country. It flowers in early March to mid April. It is also known as whip-poor-will flower, large toadshade, purple … Continue reading Little Sweet Betsy

0 comments

Larkspur

There are different types of Larkspur and I am struggling to classify this particular variety.  It looks a lot like the “Spring Larkspur” picture found in the Audubon Field Guide. Online resources are contradictory. Delphinium is a genus of about 300 species of perennial flowering plants in the family Ranunculaceae, native throughout the Northern Hemisphere … Continue reading Larkspur

0 comments

Alpine Aster

Oresostemma apligenum A widespread flower in drier meadows and stony slopes (common in the Sunrise area). Distinguished by a single flower head per stem, with a few small, narrow leaves along stem. These are all over the North 40. 

0 comments

Rocky Mountain Iris

Iris missouriensis On or around June 6, 1806, Captain Meriweather Lewis collected this flower on his return trip to Washington. This very interesting story can be read in it’s entirety on the Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks website. Rocky Mountain iris, a member of the iris family, Iridaceae, is a perennial with sword-like blades for … Continue reading Rocky Mountain Iris

0 comments

Wild Blue Flax (Prairie Flax)

Prairie flax grows 18‚Äď20 inches tall. It rarely stands straight up, but rather leans at an angle. Flowers are pale blue, with 5 petals about 1‚Äď1 1/2 inches across, veined in darker blue. Each  stem produces several flowers, blooming from the bottom upward. The seeds are produced on the lower flowers while those above continue to bloom. … Continue reading Wild Blue Flax (Prairie Flax)

0 comments

Blue Flax

0 comments
Painted Trillium

Trillium

Trillium is such a beautiful and delicate spring flower. The most common color in the Blue Ridge and Smokys is white. Pink and Red are pretty, too, but harder to find. Plants of this genus are perennial herbs growing from¬†rhizomes. They produce¬†scapes¬†which are erect and straight in most species. There are three large¬†bracts¬†arranged in a … Continue reading Trillium

0 comments

Eastern Redbud

Redbud. Glorious purple-pink blossoms brighten early spring in many North American forests. Available in a range of graceful forms, redbud is adaptable to a wide spectrum of garden climates ‚ÄĒ in California it performs more dramatically than the native California redbud. Botanical name:Cercis canadensisCommon name:¬†Eastern redbudUSDA zones:¬†4 to 9Size:¬†Up to 30 feet tall; compact varieties are … Continue reading Eastern Redbud

0 comments

Mountain Laurel

Mountain Laurel bloom late spring – early summer in Western North Carolina in the wooded high altitudes. Their blooms are a delicate washed out pink with darker veining within the bloom.

0 comments
Common Blue Violet

Violets

The leaves of this tiny little spring flower identify it to us as a violet. It grows in wet wooded areas and can be purple, white or yellow.

0 comments
Table Mountain Pine

Table Mountain Pine

Table Mountain pine, Pinus pungens, also called hickory pine, prickly pine,[1] or mountain pine, is a small pine native to the Appalachian Mountains in the United States. Pinus pungens is a tree of modest size (6‚Äď12 m), and has a rounded, irregular shape. The needles are in bundles of two, occasionally three, yellow-green to mid … Continue reading Table Mountain Pine

0 comments
Halberd-Leaved Violet

Halberd-Leaved Violet

Viola hastata, commonly known as the halberd-leaved yellow violet, is a perennial plant in the violet family found in the eastern United States. It blooms from March to May with yellow flowers. It one of the “stemmed” violets because its leave are all on an above ground stem. It is easily recognized because of it’s … Continue reading Halberd-Leaved Violet

0 comments
Ground Ivy

Ground Ivy

“Gill-over-the-Ground” Mint Family Flowers are 1/2-3/4″ long 2-lipped, the lower lip with 3 lobes and 4 stamens that do not protrude. The leaves are 1;2-1 1/2″ long with  wavy, margined edges.

0 comments

WNC Blueberries

See North American Blueberry Apparently, Hammonton, New Jersey claims to be the blueberry capital of the world but if you have visited Ivester Gap on the Blue Ridge Parkway during the months of July and August, you may beg to differ. There are blueberry thickets so dense no one can walk through them. There are … Continue reading WNC Blueberries

0 comments
Carolina Spring Beauty

Carolina Spring Beauty

Claytonia caroliniana, the Carolina springbeauty, is an herbaceous perennial in the family Montiaceae. Its native range is eastern and central North America from Newfoundland west to Ontario, Minnesota, and the Ozarks and south as far as northern Alabama. Claytonia caroliniana is a perennial herb producing spherical underground tubers. Its flowers are white or pink, sometimes … Continue reading Carolina Spring Beauty

0 comments
Witch Hobble

Witch Hobble

Viburnum lantanoides (commonly known as hobble-bush, witch-hobble, alder-leaved viburnum, American wayfaring tree,[2] and moosewood[3]) is a perennial shrub of the family Adoxaceae (formerly in the Caprifoliaceae), growing 2‚Äď4 meters (6‚Äď12 ft) high with pendulous branches that take root where they touch the ground. These rooted branches form obstacles which easily trip (or hobble) walkers ‚Äď … Continue reading Witch Hobble

0 comments
Mountain Doghobble

Mountain Doghobble

“Leucothoe fontanesiana, the highland doghobble, fetter-bush, mountain doghobble or switch ivy, is a species of flowering plant in the family Ericaceae, native to the southeastern United States. It is an erect evergreen shrub growing to 1‚Äď2 m (3‚Äď7 ft) tall by 3 m (10 ft) broad, with laurel-like glossy leaves 6‚Äď16 cm (2‚Äď6 in) long, … Continue reading Mountain Doghobble

0 comments
Pink Shell Azalea

Pink Shell Azalea

Rhododendron vaseyi is a species of flowering plant in the heath family known by the common name pinkshell azalea. It is endemic to North Carolina in the United States, where it is known only from the southern Appalachians in and near Great Smoky Mountains National Park. This deciduous shrub may grow up to 5 meters … Continue reading Pink Shell Azalea

0 comments
Blanket Flower

Blanket Flower

Gaillardia /…°e…™ňąl…Ďňźrdi…ô/ Gaillardia is a member of the sunflower and is common in North and South America.  The common name refers to the resemblance of the color to Native American blankets. It grows wild on our Montana property and the surrounding area. These little gems grow all over the North 40. They come up in … Continue reading Blanket Flower

0 comments

Old Butt Knob – Shining Creek Trail Loop

8.5 Mile Loop with 2890′ Elevation Gain Make no mistake. This is a hard hike either way you do it. We hiked this loop counter-clockwise so we could get most of the elevation gain done in the beginning of the hike. We parked at the trailhead and walked in .7 miles to the junction and … Continue reading Old Butt Knob – Shining Creek Trail Loop

0 comments

Leave a Reply