In keeping with a tradition we started last year, C and I planned a hike for Easter afternoon. We wanted something a bit out of the ordinary than our usual hike through the woods so we headed up to North Georgia to hike into see Keown Falls in the Chattahoochee National Forest.
**M heads out
The trail is very steep and rocky for the first half into the falls with a lot of switch backs.
I think I struggled more than A- did even though she was hiking in her crocs and often finding interesting surfaces to slow her gait.
The trail led up to an overlook with gorgeous views of the Johns Mountain area or down to a trail that goes behind the largest of the falls. L&M were the only daring ones to go in and they reported that ...
... the water is COLD!
This is as close as A- would go - trying to catch some water on her tongue.
The crew - some happy and some not so happy - to be on a family hike, but willing to cooperate for a photo.
**Under the rock ledge behind the falls.
The trail from the falls leads by some pretty streams and more rocky paths. This time we were going down fairly steep paths - a bit less taxing on the respiratory system but more trying to the ankles.
**L is amused by this tree.
This is definitely a great place to go hiking with the kids, esp in the spring when the falls are probably at their best.
Location:Paynes Prairie State Park, Micanopy, FL: This park is in a perfect location for stopping along 75 and it is beautiful. There are many hiking and biking trails throughout the 21,000 acres.
The goal was several days of good family time full of activity and laughter. Well, we did persevere though there were times of conflict as we have so many ages all having different ideas of what it means to "vacation." Traditional camping activities were enjoyed by most - hiking, biking, campfires, games in the camper...
***L finds a seat on our hike into see the visitor center and climb the 50 ft observation tower.
After receiving a bike for her birthday, L was enthusiastic about biking on this trip. She and her mom took a morning bike ride along some paths that ended up being quite waterlogged. Arriving back at the campground site weary and muddy, we joked we had ridden on the Erie Canal.
Our Easter breakfast highlights. Happy to be reunited (C and J had come home from FL early). Flowers were gathered from our yard to make the center pieces. The chocolate eggs were preferred over the natural ones. A's red Christmas sweater and M's red tie (gone are the days of Mom dressing everyone in cute matching Easter outfits). The Love Amoeba.
Worship filled with inspiring music and a message on Phillipians 3:10-11.
...that I may know him [Christ] and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.
A Family Hike at McIntosh Reserve Park **A crosses the stream the first time without getting wet. **L made a hobo pouch to carry her water bottle. **Hiking **By #4 crossing A thought nothing of stepping in the water as much as keeping out of it. Skipping Stones
Whittling Posing (some willingly, some not so..) Collecting Resting (Phew! We can't hike like we use to!) Picnicking Bug hunting?
Let the games begin!
Long jump contestant #1 Long jump contestant #2 And the winner by a long, long jump!
And to end the day... A quick surprise visit with good friends who welcomed us enthusiastically.
Hmmm… Since most of the museums we’ll
see will be influenced solely by the uniformitarian view, we toured one of the
few museums in the U.S.that
wholeheartedly embraces the catastrophist view - the Creation
Museum in Northern KY (http://www.creationmuseum.org/). On the
car ride north, we boggled our minds with the audio version of the Apologia
General Science chapters on geology. This
museum presents an abundance of information favoring the catastrophism view.
One of our favorites is the fish fossil
caught in the act of eating a fish. Could
this have happened in a catastrophe or in a slow process over time?
**Phooning on a suspension bridge on the grounds during our lunch break. The kids' enthusiasm was caught by my sister's family as well.
The camper stood in our cul-de-sac for a day and we couldn't stand it anymore. We took our first trip Easter eve to F.D.R. State Park. Being able to flip on the heater when the temperature dips to a chilly 28 degrees does shed a new light on the meaning of camping. For our family it did what we envisioned. We enjoyed being together hiking, stargazing, campfire-ing and learning how to live in the new camper.
Picture: M finds what he is sure is the spot Jesus gave his sermon to his disciples.
60 Hikes within 60 Miles by Randy and Pam Golden has led us to many adventures exploring Georgia and conditioning our hiking legs. At the beginning, 5 year old M cried at every incline. Now in February, he is able to hike happily and even climb (more happily than not)!
Kids playing on a log across a creek in the Chattahoochee National Recreation Area in Palisades East.
A dream of mine was to climb Springer Mt to see the terminus of the Appalachian Trail.
C leading the kids over Little Bear Creek on the Cochran Mill Trail.
L studying a beaver dam at Reynolds Nature Preserve.
S, A and M on top of Stone Mountain.
Photography continues to grow as an interest in our family. J getting an unique angle on top of a bridge at Sweetwater Creek State Conservation Park.
Inspired by the book, Wild Days, by Karen Skidmore Rackliffe we began bi-monthly hiking days. Partly it was to get our bodies in shape for the more rigorous out west hikes and partly to work on our nature journals.
As the author writes,"We need time away from our hectic lives, to connect with ourselves, our world, our creator and one another. Where in our planners do we fit the nourishing expansive delights of writing down our thoughts about life, watching a spider build his web, praying, or looking into the eyes of a child to find who lives there?"
For more info about the book see www.pennygardner.com/wild_days.html
*photo: E working on her nature journal near the Chattahoochee River.