Tuesday, November 11, 2008

North Georgia Mountains

Most people would never guess that just a few miles north of where we live in our Atlanta suburb is the North Georgia mountains where the Appalachian Trail begins/ends, depending on where you're coming from.

And just one hour from our house, we drove this past Sunday into those mountains, to one of Georgia's most popular state parks: Amicalola Falls. Amicalola is the Cherokee Indian word for "tumbling waters." That's because they do!

And if you're willing to take your eyes off the falls and do an about-face, there you see from whence you came!

The falls themselves are 729-feet high, the tallest east of the Mississippi. You get your choice: start at the top and walk down the 425 steps (with views of the falls all the way down)...

...or start at the bottom, the base of the falls, and walk up. We decided to do both, parking at the top and walking down and then turning right around and walking back up.

The sweetest thing about walking back up is that we were behind a 6-year-old boy who has non-paralytic cerebral palsy. Because he was a bit wobbly (but still very energetic!), his pace ended up being exactly the right pace for us 50/60-something women! And the interchange we had with him and his parents was more than enough to make us forget we were climbing back up the 425 steps. It was wonderful.

I wonder if these boys, back at the top, know how lucky they are!

After the falls, we went into another part of the state park to find a spot to eat the fabulous picnic lunch Donica had packed for us. After that, we continued along a one-lane gravel road to find the High Shoals Baptist Church we kept seeing signs for. We eventually found it and were glad we persisted. It's as "country" as they come, with services held every 3rd and 5th Sundays of the month at 3p. 5th?? How many of those would there be in a year, I wonder!

Then it was time to head back home and catch even some more sights.
Always be cautious of pumpkin pickers!

Just a few yards away from that sign was this 1955 Ford Fairlane Crown Victoria, enjoying its retirement in the woods. Donica was the one who did the research to find out exactly what year and model it was! When I retire from everything, I'd like to live in the woods, I think! OH! That's right...I DO! :)

On the way up, we had made a mental note of this little treasure by the side of the road, selling ice cream treats. So, yes, we stopped on our way back.

Eat, drink and be Merry.
Relax and Enjoy Yourself

We did. I couldn't have said it better myself.

What a great day in the Georgia mountains! You know what they say about your own backyard....


Later this afternoon Donica and I will be flying to Zürich, Switzerland, returning on Sunday...just a quickie. She'll be there for business meetings on Thursday and Friday and I'll be there on...a PHOTO HUNT, of course! I'm so excited because it'll be my first time ever in Switzerland. Not only that, on Friday we plan to have dinner in nearby Basel with CS and O-X, blogger friends for a long time now. YAY for when the virtual world becomes REAL!


  1. Thanks for capturing this special day. It was so much fun to just relax and let the day happen.

    If we had taken the truck instead of the car we really could have explored all of those winding gravel roads without the hesitation we had with the BMW.

    Looking forward to seeing Zurich...outside the airport for a change :) And, this time I get to meet CS and O-X too (I missed them when they were in Amsterdam because of work :(

    Great pictures..the color, the comp, the textures and everything! Just like I saw the same with my very own eyes!

  2. Oh Ginnie- what wonderful photos!! I'd never have guessed that you lived so close to the mountains!

    Have tons of fun in Switzerland and meeting CS and O-X too!

  3. Fantastic pictures of a gorgeous part of our country, so close to you. Maybe you'll teach me how to set the camera shutter speed right to get the water to do that. :)

    Was this just one day then? Was this the place you were going to spend the weekend?

    Oh man, I'm jealous about Switzerland! I was stunned the first time I got out of our vehicle there. Enjoy, and I can't wait to see the photographs you get. Yay!

    Travel well, you two.

  4. The pictures are fabulous, Ginnie! Such beautiful colours. What a great way to spend the day relaxing.

    We're soo looking forward to seeing you again and finally meeting Donica! I'll send you both an e-mail with details.

  5. Have fun in Switzerland.......I am itching to travel myself.....just about anywhere..... in fact, right now sitting in my cubicle, just outside office would do ..... :)

    The fall colors are mostly gone in our parts so this post is all the more welcome :) Love, love , love that retired Ford shot........

    Will love to see your images from Switzerland.....:)

  6. Ginnie, I loved all these photos but especially the ones of the falls and the Ford Fairlane Crown Victoria. Great shots!

  7. Ginnie, What a beautiful day you had. Our trees are just now getting to look like this. I am so excited for your trip to Switzerland and your "meet up". How special. Enjoy!

  8. Ginnie these pictures are stunning what a great back yard you have:):)
    I know you will enjoy your time with fellow bloggers its what you do best along with taking great pictures of course.
    Take care Musketeer you are in my thoughts.

  9. Great pics again Ms. Ginnie!! I was last there in 2003, and made only one "lap" up those stairs and look at the energy of you two on this trip. Impressive!
    I'm eager to see your photo shoot from Switzerland while your other half is at work. :-) Welcome back to your life of abundance being retired. You'll both be giving and receiving more to each other travelling together again.

  10. Ok - I'm behind on reading but not that badly! I'm so happy you are experiencing Switzerland and what a great place to see first!!!

    Your pics were incredible and if I had more time outside, I'd wish the same.

    I'm sure you are going to find so much on your photo hunt!!!!

    Make sure you give CS and OX a hug for me!!! I know you will thoroughly enjoy your dinner with them!

  11. Gorgeous photos! Looked like a fun day, especially ending with ice cream!

  12. What a nice story and trip out in the nature and what breath taking photos. You know I love to be out in the mountains and we have a lot of it in Norway - actually I felt very much like home when reading and watching this.
    It really shows the golden beauty of autumn too!

    Have a lovely trip to Europe and give my regards to Donica.

  13. Ginnie, I enjoyed this cyber tour of the park. Someday, I wanna do my own photo hunting in that part of the country.

    M'roy :)

  14. Wow, these photos are amazing. It looks like you had such an amazing day. Happy travels! I have a cousin who lives in Switzerland. I've never been but hope to visit her one day.

  15. Oh it's getting closer to meeting time and thinking about you guys!

  16. Stunning! I love how you attract people from all over with your talents and personality and openess.

  17. Fabulous pictures, those colours, ontzettend mooi, geweldig.
    This is a treat to have this so closeby, it must be nice all year round to walk here...
    The waterfall is beautiful, the car...as I said before..is in it's own autumn years...too bad that nobody takes care of it...it deserved so much better after all those years of good service (I guess).
    I will keep your words in mind...work and..........relax....it is important.
    Thanks for sharing this very soulful place.

  18. I keep coming back and waiting.. ;-) I've heard the virtual report... But no Ginnie report yet.. hehe

  19. Hope things are going well for you. I'll come back later to hopefully see more posts from you. :)

  20. Thanks to everyone for your wonderful comments! WHERE HAVE I BEEN??!!

    Donica: Your car did just fine on that bumpy road, tho' it was scary in spots. The truck would definitely have been better! Oh well. Next time. It was a great day.

    T1: We actually can see the mountains from certain spots in our little city! They really are nearby.

    Ruth: Ohhhh. The shutter speed happens automatically! All I do is set the ISO to 100, put the mode to AP, and then make the F-stop high (like 18/20/22). The rest just takes care of itself. And yes, this was just one day, for several hours. A FUN day!

    CS: Can you believe we did it! :) It was a wonderful get-together!

    Moi: I know that feeling of being cooped up inside. I hope you CAN travel soon...anywhere.

    Tim: It was YOUR kind of place, for sure!!

    Judy: We in the south are definitely later on the fall colors than others. We're still seeing the beautiful colors here in Atlanta. I love this time of the year!

    Lurch: Those places that are at our fingertips are often the ones we never go to, Tracy, right?! I do love meeting up with fellow bloggers, for sure. It makes the world go 'round. :)

    Bob: The traveling part is definitely back in full swing! And you are so right...it's up my alley. :)

    ET: As you know by now, Jen, it was a fabulous time. I loved every minute of it. And yes, I did think of you often. :)

    Katy: Ice cream was the proverbial frosting on the cake. :)

    Renny: You could have written this post because of how much YOU love nature! :)

    PC: How fun to have you stop by here, Maria. THANK YOU! :)

    Mad: My wish for you is that you will one day get to go see her!!!

    ET: I can feel your excitement. :)

    Susan: Thank you for your kind and sweet comment. That means a lot.

    Astrid: We both know how important Nature is! If we don't have it, we die a slow death. Ontzettend bedankt, mijn vriend.

    ET: You are not THAT impatient, are you, Jen??? :)

    Tim: I'm doing just fine...as you can see, now that I have finally published a new post. Thanks for checking back in.

  21. What a beautiful place...very nice!