Tallulah Gorge State Park

We went for a 2.5-mile hike at Tallulah Gorge State Park today – a 1000-foot deep 2-mile long gorge.

We chose a trail down some stairs to the suspension bridge deep in the gorge. Note the sign on the stairway “N5” – each of platforms is numbered as you go down so this one is the 5th platform on the North rim. How many stairs? 530 .. slowly:

Aching thigh muscles by now. The suspension bridge which jiggled and swayed a little bit with every person’s step:

Time to climb the stairs on the other side – 347 steps! The platform numbers now start with an S and go from high to low. At least you got a sense of success and the numbers dropped to zero at the top. There were lots of benches along the way to rest. And we rested a lot.

We walked the South Rim trail back to the start. Nice and flat. Whew!

We crossed the river again along a roadway near the dam.

On the drive home, we stopped to see a local attraction, Goats on the Roof:

And finally, the view from a scenic overlook:

I am going to have some VERY sore leg muscles tomorrow! OMG

Hiawassee GA

We arrived at Bald Mountain Campground yesterday afternoon.

Driving on freeways with many big rigs flying by plus assorted other bad drivers does not make for a relaxed drive. Then we got to curvy narrow mountain roads in northern Georgia which became a different kind of not-relaxed driving. Billie did great – and I was so glad it wasn’t me driving! We got a great night’s sleep and Billie made Belgian waffles for breakfast – yum.

Today we drove beautiful mountain roads to Young Harris and found a great little bakery:

Looking forward to sampling these:

We then drove to the town of Hiawassee, explored some shops, got a few things at the grocery store, and of course, went to Starbucks.

There are quite a few daily activities at this Georgia Winnebago State Rally. Billie went to an RV service/repair/ownership seminar this afternoon. She consulted with a couple of people about several maintenance concerns she has.

Then she went to a “live auction at the pavilion” and, by the time she got back, a little mouse had carefully carved out two small sections from the box of goodies (the lemon bars are in the refrig) ..

Cavendish Brewing Company

A Harvest Host in Gastonia NC. Unfortunately, they are closed on Tuesdays. Darn. Beginning NEXT Tuesday, it will be $1 Taco Tuesday Night. Double darn. Nevertheless, they let us park here overnight.

We were parked at a noisy corner, but it was free, no hookups of course. The noise allowed us to (guilt-free) run the generator to use the AC in the afternoon – it was rather warm. We were parked on the other side of this building:

These pictures turned out pretty good considering I put my camera against the window to take:

Early to bed. We’ll be up early and moving on.

Rainy day

With a day of drizzly rain and thinking to the days ahead with limited amenities, Saturday was a shopping/cooking day mainly. I was the sous chef. To the left, green peppers sent back to the sous chef for a smaller dice (on the right).

Meanwhile at the stove ..

Midway through the process, turkey meatloaf, turkey taco meat, sauteed mushrooms and leftover onions/green pepper for the next creation.

I went to the spice cabinet – quite the selection! – and made the turkey taco seasoning (nine different things to measure).

Little quiches for an easy breakfast. The leftover mushrooms are for Sunday’s baked potato dinner. There are also two turkey burgers in the freezer. Then Billie made dinner ,,

brown beans and cornbread:

“That’s enough butter, Arlete.” Although there might be a few of my relatives who disagree.

On Sunday, it was time for cleaning (Billie) and laundry (Arlete) and generally getting ready to leave tomorrow.

Your bike rides this week

Monday: Carmen, Jane, Leo, Amal, Barbara; photo by Cheryl!

Wednesday: Dani, Barbara, Cheryl, Kathy.

Thursday: Leo, Jonathan, Barbara, Jane, Cheryl, Kathy:

Friday: Barbara, Kathy, Dani, Jonathan, Jane; photo by Cheryl.

Saturday: Amal and Brian:

Saturday: an adventure riding along the Yolo Causeway to County Rd 24 and back: Barbara, Kathy, Leo, Jonathan, Jane; photo by Cheryl. Go team!

Neuse River Trail

We drove to the northern end of the trail in Wake Forest and rode from MM 0-15 and back. The Falls of Neuse:

A covered bridge trail-style, protecting pedestrians and cyclists from debris that might fall from the train tracks above.

Chairs for sale, every one was different:

Perfectly situated near MM 15 was a bench where we had lunch before turning around.

A beautiful day and trail. 30 miles roundtrip.

Rest day

Well, sort of. There’s always a lot to do on days we don’t ride. Errands, purchases, planning, more cooking usually, including prepping breakfast and lunch for the next day if there’s a ride. At the end of the day, Billie said, “We got a lot done today.” And this is the only picture I have to show for it:

Aldi’s has very good wine at $3. It was time stock up. We actually have a wine cellar. You go out the door, down the steps and turn left. Open the passenger door and …

there on the floor of the passenger’s side in a big strong bag filled with Winking Owl.

Life is good.

Walnut Creek Trail

We drove to Poole Rd Park, about midway on the Neuse River Trail. It was a short ride to the intersection with the Walnut Creek Trail.

Back under the bridge we just rode over.

Lots of boardwalks over wetlands. The longest was almost 0.4 miles long.

We rode under the bank of pinkish-white trees in the background. The blossoms were falling and the scent was wonderful.

After a short stretch on Little John Rd and Rose Ln, the trail restarted and changed to a narrow uneven boardwalk with sharp odd turns. Not an ideal surface to ride on!

We slowed way down to let these two families with 8 small children move at their own pace down the trail until they decided to move over to the side.

Our destination was the State Farmers Market – 75 acres with 210,000 sq ft of covered space for local farmers to sell their goods 365 days/year.

We had lunch at the on-site restaurant:

I decided to not go big, just a BLT. Then the free appetizers came: warm biscuits/butter/jam and hush puppies.

The excellent BLT came with hot seasoned salty fries:

Billie decided on a vegetable plate with four items – crowder peas, limas and corn, coleslaw, and fried green tomatoes (the “most scrumptious” she’s ever had):

And finally the complimentary (small, thankfully) banana pudding dessert. Back on the bikes to ride back.

23 miles roundtrip. And we might not have to eat dinner tonight.

Neuse River Trail

We parked here:

The first mile marker we came to:

Behind the sign and fence is a huge biosolids field and all water used to irrigate is reused so none of it flows into the Neuse River.

Our lunch stop and turn-around point was at Anderson Point Park at about MM 17. While eating we were treated to a gymnast/dancer performing various moves while a photographer captured images.

28 miles – another great bike ride!