Ten days ago we confirmed a plan with Jennifer to
use the kids' Veterans Day holiday for a picnic and hike
at our beloved Morrow Mountain State Park.
Lo, and behold. Amanda calls and asks if they could
"drop in" from Georgia and spend a couple of nights with
us. DUH! YES (or weeks)!
The surprise visit happily coincided with the pre-planned
Morrow Mountain visit. So with no more delay, let me
share some of the highlights of that glorious day.
|Before noon it was breezy at the mountaintop, so we decided to|
picnic down by Lake Tillery. Hey, where's Ryan?
|Oh, near the food, of course.|
|Act One, Scene 1: Clair spreads her wings.|
|Act One, Scene 2: Evan follows suit.|
|Act One, Scene 3: Ryan tries HIS wings. Did you ever doubt it?|
|In spite of overnight rain, the trails were dry. We chose the|
Three Rivers Trail, which at 0.8 miles figured to be enough of a
challenge. It was well worth a steep climb for the views we would get.
|The rear guard never wavered.|
|Posing at the top with various specimens. Hunter has a|
granddaddy long-legs. Those were abundant and highly prized
on this fall day.
|Jennifer and Amanda with five of the grandest "grands" ever.|
From here, we could view the three rivers that converge to form
Lake Tillery: the Yadkin River joins the Uwharrie River which
then becomes known as the Pee Dee River.
|Focus on the Hump-backed orb weaver (spider) near center.|
None of our cameras could focus very well.
|Here, the giant arachnid menaces Claire, but she stares him down.|
She is ARTEMIS, and knows no fear!
|We came to a fair-sized ravine which the older kids size up for|
crossing. Meanwhile, Ryan, who never misses a photo op,
steals the show.
|Trees are for climbing, whether they're vertical, diagonal, or horizontal.|
|Anybody have an idea how we'll get back?|
|This nearby fallen tree presented a different kind of obstacle course.|
It was a maze worthy of the Minotaur.
|Dry logs are a welcome rest stop after a steep climb-- AND a|
steep descent. No one said they were tired, though.
|Evan and Hunter thought this tree could be called Zero.|
|The river had an icy but serene look today.|
|Even in mid-November the leaves were more muted than vivid.|
|Here's a look back up at the mini-mountain we had hiked over.|
I think the next time we go, the kids will blaze their own trails.
|Yes, those are lilies in the foreground. I'd never seen them there before.|
A nice view of the shore we had followed.
|Our nature patrol found oddities everywhere they turned.|
|Even at the end of the trail, they wanted to "sign in" to show we|
had been there. Nothing wrong with their "temporary graffiti."
|We relaxed for a while at the park museum. It was Ryan's first time|
and he was spellbound by many of the exhibits. All our kids are
Before heading home, we drove back to the mountaintop
for some final photos. On a future visit, we'll hike the
trail at the top. Only Ryan hadn't done it before, but he'll
get his chance.
|Did you ever sit on a rock wall at an overlook and wonder what|
it would be like to roll all the way down a mountain?
I wonder why these two are smiling so big. Hmm.
|Evan and Hunter display two of their granddaddy longleg friends.|
To the children's credit, none of them tried to scare each other with them.
They simply wanted to hold them and play with them.
|Zooming in on Lake Tillery from the mountaintop picnic area.|
|Hey guys, I'm over here. Behind you.|
|Five grandkids and two granddaddy longlegs.|
|Bri: Everybody flap your wings, like this.|
Hunter: I don't think spiders can fly.
|For me and Judy, this is what happiness looks like.|
|These three moms are responsible for a WHOLE lot of happiness|
for a whole lot of people!