Sunday, July 18, 2010

Hiking Highlights

So I've been a little out of touch recently. I have been quite busy entertaining house guests...quite my favorite thing to do. If you are keeping up with my blog, you know that my father-in-law was in town a few weeks ago, followed by my brother and now my sister-in-law and her best friend are here.

Well, I took "brother bear" to the airport yesterday after nearly two weeks of quality brother-sister bonding time. We talked mostly about the documentaries we watched: about food, oil, directors, musicians, etc. We chatted about Dave Ramsey and budgets, about future plans for him in college and much, much more. However, our best brother-sister moment was on the trails of Grandfather Mountain. Call it a hike, but we called it an adventure: it was an experience I'll not quickly forget!

Check out the trails that we hiked:

So day one we hiked the Tanawah Trail from the Boone Fork Parking Area to the Daniel Boone Scout Trail (.7 miles). We then turned on the Daniel Boone Scout Trail and took it to Calloway Peak (3 miles) where it intersected with Grandfather Trail and took that to the top of Grandfather Mountain at the Swinging Bridge (2.5 miles). We had a yummy lunch of PB&B and granola. After just a short rest we had to head back...the same way we came. Another 6+ miles! We were already so tired and sore and we were only half way there!

Here are some photo highlights of our hike:

This was truly the best experience with my brother. The next day we hiked about 3 miles to the Linn Cove Viaduct...a very gorgeous hike and also checked out Beacon Heights.

And of course I have to show off our vegan camp food. Although vegan, I can't say that it was the healthiest. We ate vegan hot dogs, lots of PB&B sandwiches, grilled "cheese" sandwiches and "egg" salad. For dessert we had vegan smores. We tried two kinds of marshmallows: Sweet & Sara and Dandie's. I can't say which was my favorite. I liked the texture and ease of Sweet & Sara, but I may have liked the flavor better of Dandie's. We used Rice Dream chocolate and Boom Choco Boom bars. We also made campfire "pies" from Ezekiel cinnamon raisin bread with this wonderful Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter and marshmallows. The photo doesn't show how delectable these treats really were!

While on the trail, I got to spend some quality time with my creator. When you look out and see the beauty in the mountains, its easy to know that God exists and he loves us! I sat on top of Beacon Heights and prayed. My brother walked over to a lookout and announced he had never felt more alive! The mountains caught us awestruck and I was on top of the world. God gave us such a beautiful world to live in, and so many days all I seem to do is muck it all up! But for two days on top of the world I too felt more alive than I've felt in a while and it was wonderful! I am so happy I got to spend this time with my brother!

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