Black Rock Mountain State Park – Edmonds Backcountry Trail Revisit

Black Rock Mountain State Park – Edmonds Backcountry Trail Revisit

I did say that I would never hike this trail again but I did. I am very glad I did because it was a totally different experience this time around. Not only was the trail easier but I shaved a few hours off my time too. If you want to know about the trail, you can read my first post about Edmonds here. I just wanted to revise my previous statements in that the trail was not actually the entrance to hell. I would rate it as moderate to difficult depending on the area. Minus the time at the top, it took about three and a half hours but they say to give yourself at least four. The only thing that stayed murderous and horrible was the last mile and a half of the trail. Just when your energy and legs are feeling tired you get to climb, nay, claw your way to the parking lot for 1.5 miles. I resorted to saying “left, right, left, right”. You should find some repetitive phrase to help you during this hell mile. Besides that, the trail was much easier this time around and here are the key reasons why:

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Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park

Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park

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Nephew of infinite energy

Kennesaw Mountain is a very popular mountain to hike just out of Atlanta. It’s a very pet and kid friendly trail so if you’re looking for some introvert time on a mountain, make sure to go early in the morning or you’ll be met with half of the city. On the other hand, if you’re an extrovert, hike during people hours and you’ll meet all sorts of dogs and humans. I shudder at the thought of meeting lots of humans when hiking, dogs are fine though. I did this hike at 8:00am on a sunny but cold day with a tiny human this time around. My tiny human hiking companion was my nephew who probably could have run up and down the mountain three times without getting out of breath. Nothing shows your age or lack of fitness level like hiking with a tiny human. I’m fairly strong and I run from zombies four days a week (Zombies, Run app – don’t run again without it). So when my nephew slayed me on the trail, it wasn’t awesome. Well, it was for him.

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Black Rock Mountain State Park – Edmonds Backcountry Trail

Black Rock Mountain State Park – Edmonds Backcountry Trail

Hello again fellow adventurers! You may have noticed my long absence over the last part of Summer. I did not give up hiking rather an injury that I made worse through stubbornness prevented me from doing anything physical. Lessons learned: 1) When you have a sport injury, see a sports doctor not a regular doc. 2) When you have a groin PULL do not wait two weeks and immediately jump back into exercising full strength. This results in a complete groin tear and a pelvic stress fracture. I am indeed a genius.

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Stone Mountain State Park

Stone Mountain State Park

Let me first start out by saying I fully understand why everyone in this state loves to go to Stone Mountain. There are a lot of things to do there and I still have to go back to experience the laser show and some kayaking but I will say that I’ll be procrastinating on those quests. Stone Mountain is just so packed and it’s a family destination trap so you’re almost always around slow moving people that you have to politely and briskly try to maneuver past. It’s a heck of a workout and if you really want to add some adrenaline, go in the rain. I am kidding about that, I actually did Stone Mountain in the rain but I had no choice. I had about two days left of March to finish the Monadnock Madness Challenge. So here is the final part of the March Monadnock Madness 2014.

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Panola Mountain State Park

Panola Mountain State Park

Diamorpha on Panola Mountain
Diamorpha on Panola Mountain

What a gem of a park and so close to Atlanta, you really have no excuse for not checking this one out. Panola Mountain is another monadnock in the three-part Monadnock Madness. It has so many different things to do here for every age, you could go every weekend and not be bored. Zumba Fitness, Beginners to Intermediate Archery Lessons (good for Zombie preparedness), archery camp, moonlight hikes, tree top excursions, Junior Ranger Day Camp, bike tours, geocaching, fishing, camping! That’s just a few of the many things that Panola Mountain State Park offers.

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Arabia Mountain

Arabia Mountain

Oh Arabia Mountain, I wish I could explain how fun this place is. It’s a great place for a short hike or for a long day of exploring.  This quest was done on the day of my birthday, March 21st and was the first of three monadnocks. The next two blogs after this will be the other two monadnocks I visited in the month of March during Monadnock Madness.

What exactly is a Monadnock? It’s a defined as a small mountain that rises abruptly from a level surrounding plain or an isolated rock hill, knob or ridge. It’s actually a Native American term for an isolated hill. Atlanta has three monadnocks, all very close to each other. Can you guess which ones they are? Arabia Mountain, Panola Mountain and Stone Mountain.

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Mount Yonah

Mount Yonah

Yonah in the DistanceOkay, whatever plans you have this weekend, drop them. I mean it, drop them now and put Mount Yonah in your sights. Now I’m sure you know that I am behind in updating my blog by a few quests so this picture was taken in the middle of March. Which I would call Spring but since Winter decided to be a school yard bully, Spring has really only recently taken hold. It turned out to be a great photography experience because everywhere I looked it was like Spring and Winter were in an epic battle against each other.

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