Friday morning after breakfast I got the midgets ready and told them to get in the car for a surprise. I took them to Carrier Park where they have a nifty playground. This park is where we dropped in for tubing down the French Broad. Things are starting to click as far as where I am when I am driving. I am trying to stay off the interstates (where siri always sends me) to learn more of the actual roads. Anyway, the park has a roller hockey rink, a bike track, volley ball and basketball courts, walking trails, some sort of game court…maybe bocce? They played on the playground for almost 2 hours and Ella Kate declared that she was done because she was hot and sweaty.
We headed back in to eat lunch and rest. Michael got to come home early. We had originally planned to stay in and have a movie night as we had a big day planned for the next day. I was texting Anne Marie and she said Patrick was going to play some blues at a country club in a fancy schmancy community in Enca from 6-8 so we decided to go. So we mowed down dinner and packed up and headed out. This place was great! It was on a lake surrounded by mountains and kids were swimming and jumping off a floating dock. So as soon as the girls saw that they asked if I brought their swim suits and I said no, I didn’t get the memo. But they did have a playground directly behind us so they played on that and we watched Patrick play.
Saturday was a big ole day for Ella Kate and Addison. I asked them Friday what they wanted to see while we hiked, Addison wanted an overlook, EK wanted waterfalls…so we found a 5 mile loop that gave us both. Neither one of them had done 5 miles, and as soon as we got on the trail we realized it was closer to 6 since we went to the overlook. Michael left early Saturday morning to run and we were suppose to meet him at 10:30 but he had called and said he wasn’t going to make the full route he wanted to because he had slept in…and I said ok I wasn’t going to make it either because it took me longer than I had planned for to get us all ready. So I got everything ready with a quickness and I still had to go to REI to get Ella Kate a pack. When I picked out my pack we tried on some for kids…she was able to fit into one, but Addison is still to small. She doesn’t need to carry anything anyway. So we got Ella Kate her new purple backpack and she was in heaven. My kids love bags. I did warn her though that she wasn’t going to be playing with it while not in use. Addison was a little sad and poked her lip out because I didn’t get her one. I told her we would get her one when she was older.
SOOOO we drove down to find dad, who was running down a road to meet us…Addison said, “Hey, I think that was Dad!” He jumped in and we headed to Pisgah National Forest and Fish Hatchery.
This is what we immediately saw when we pulled into the parking lot. Yup, we are going up there…super crazy!
The fish hatchery was pretty cool, full of all sorts of trout, the littles loved looking at the fish, but we needed to get going!
We went to the office to get a map and low and behold there is a room full of fish, snakes, and other creepy crawlers so we had to check that out and get a free poster. Boom.
After leaving all that fun, we went back to the van and got all geared up and headed out…6 mile loop. We hiked the John Rock Hike and Cedar Rock Falls Hike in 5.5 hours, about an hour pace a mile. It was well worth it.
When I bought Addison’s little hiking shoes I was talking to the guy about the fit and he said it’s not like she will be hiking 5 miles, and I kinda looked at him funny and thought, she probably will be hiking something close to that. She nailed it.
I have something to admit. Addison littered, not just a little litter, a big one. We ate lunch on that rock, got all cleaned up and were taking in the views and she accidentally kicked her water bottle. It is forever lost. She was so sad. As we were too. We only had one bottle for her. The other two are packed somewhere. But she was excited to use everyone’s camelbaks.
At that point in the hike, we were almost half way there. The weather was okay…the first side of the mountain was a little warm and humid, no wind. So we were pretty drenched. On the other side of the mountain was a little nicer, cooler pockets and wind. There are numerous amounts of campsites scattered throughout the trail. Would love to come back to one! So we headed off to Cedar Rock Falls.
Once we made it to the falls, we were almost in the home stretch, which is good, cause their feet were starting to hurt. The trail to and from the falls and parking lot was super enjoyable. It was cushioned with pine needles. It was relatively flat, which was good for the girls, because the climb up to John Rock was a little strenuous. They did AWESOME…and Michael and I are super proud of them. We have made a list of stuff to bring on hikes to keep them going…mainly candy…Michael had some leftover snickers and treats from running and that kept them going on the trip to the falls.
Today we are going to go check on the house and let the girls go in and look around. We have talking about our hike up to Mt. Mitchell next weekend, and they are curious so we might drive up to the top of it and let them see it. I have been reading several websites and watching go pro videos of people hiking the mountain and when you summit it is super crazy cause because you spend half the day on a trial surrounded by natural beauty and when you summit, its like a carnival. People are everywhere, bathrooms, all kinds of stuff.