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:
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.
The story behind DeSoto Falls sounds like something from legends. Hopefully, you are aware of Hernando de Soto. If you aren’t I’ll give a quick run down about this lad in a moment. The falls were named after DeSoto because of some stories that indicated his breastplate was found at the base of the falls. Pieces of armor, dated around the 16th century, have also been found around the area but it’s not conclusive as to if it was de Soto’s. That of course gives way to the mystery of the falls and keeps folklore in your mind as you hike. Especially since they recovered a sword as well nearby……
Raven Cliff Falls is the number one place I’ve been to so far. The only way to explain it is by telling you that you feel like you’ve been transported into some other world. To me it was like stepping into Neverland where you just may find Peter Pan and the Lost Boys. The trail is 2.5 miles there and 2.5 miles back giving a total of 5 miles. The length may turn some of you off but it’s not a difficult trail at all and you are walking next to pristine water that has several waterfalls dotting along the way. Let’s just say there is so much scope for the imagination that you probably could walk the trail twice and not even realize how long you’ve walked. The trail is also agreeable for even a novice hiker and there were only a few places that were moderately up hill.
Okay, 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.
Tallulah Gorge has been a very popular tourist attraction since the 19th century. When the railway was built, it became one of the busiest tourist destinations in Georgia. They say that during that time, on a Sunday, more than 2,000 people would be seen near the gorge, at the resort or mingling in the bars. Fun fact: Nik Wallenda is taking a look at doing the daredevil tightrope walk across the gorge in the next three years. Karl Wallenda was the second man to walk across the gorge on a tightrope. The huge towers that were used to hold the rope are still there today and make for some cool photographs.
During these times, there wasn’t a dam holding back the water. It was a raw open and incredibly amazing place. Not to say it isn’t amazing now, but they say the tourism died when the dam was built. Prior to the dam you could hear the roar of the water for miles and after it became deafening quiet. You often hear that Tallulah means “loud waters” in Cherokee but in truth, the word has no meaning.
It’s hard to say Blood Mountain without wanting to sound like Dracula. Bloooood Mountain. Say it…….see how easy it is? This was a great quest because it was done with a friend of 17 years and my two most wonderful best friends who are hysterical and awesome. Because of their hysterical tendencies, I also place blame in having my first spill off a rock in which yes, I did bleed a tiny bit.