Welcome to JOYFUL REFLECTIONS. My Header this month shows the mountain ranges and a little left-over Fall Color along the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina, 11/1/19.

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Follow Me on a GREAT Birthday Trip!!!!!!

Along Skyline Drive at the Timber Hollow overlook on 8/8/19
Dear Friends,   We are home after an awesome trip to Virginia..... I have a 'gazillion' pictures to go through ---but spent Monday just picking out pictures of me taken this past week ---so that I could take you on my journey today...   Prepare yourself for some EXERCISE --and be sure to take your water!!!!!!!   Here we go........



Our first stop on my Birthday (8/5):    We stopped for one night at the PEAKS of OTTER  Resort on the Blue Ridge  Parkway near Buchanan, VA.   We love that place ---and had time for two walks around the lake  (one before dinner and one after dinner at sunset).    



My delicious Birthday Dinner that night at the Peaks of Otter Lodge Restaurant;   I had a salad,  green beans,  and one of the best Pork Chops I've eaten in a long time....YUM!!!  It was huge ---so a bunch of it went into our cooler to take home for another meal.    BUT---since it was my Birthday and since there are no calories on one's birthday,   I splurged and ate some Blackberry Cobbler with Vanilla Ice Cream for dessert.... (It is a good thing that we walked for 2 miles  after eating that dessert... ha ha)



NO---I'm not burning up in the campfire (although it looks like it)..... We just enjoyed sitting around the campfire --after that big meal and walk!!!!!!



The next day (8/6) ---we were mostly 'on the road' ---but did manage to stop at some overlooks along the Blue Ridge Parkway.  This picture was taken at the Onion Mountain Overlook.   We also took a short walk so that George could get some pictures of  the cascades at Falling Waters Cascade Overlook.



We made it to SKYLAND RESORT  (off of Skyline Drive) near Luray, VA about 3:30 pm...   This was the view we had of the Shenandoah Valley from our room at Skyland.   We enjoyed some hot tea and relaxed a bit before going to dinner.   Isn't this view GORGEOUS?



The next day (Aug 7) ---we took a 1.3 mile hike on the Limberlost Trail off of Skyline Drive not far from Skyland...  What a neat little trail in the woods..... The path was well-maintained,  smooth,  fairly flat,  and there were benches all along the way... 


Along the Limberlost Trail,   the vegetation was so rich and fertile...  Seeing all of the ferns made me think I was in Paradise!




We loved watching the sunsets all three nights we were there... This night (8/7) was definitely my favorite!!!!!   George snapped this picture of me sitting on the steps taking pictures and enjoying God's beauty.


This is what I was looking at in the picture above..... What a gorgeous sunset that evening (8/7),   as it gradually disappeared over the Shenandoah Valley.



On 8/8---we took a couple of hikes... This first one (my favorite hike of the entire week) was  to the summit at   Little Stony Man mountain.   The hike wasn't that long ---but it was UP UP UP.....  I hadn't done any elevation hiking since my Ablation (June 13)---and was so proud of myself for being able to do it... George took this picture of me while we were on the Appalachian Trail on that hike up the mountain.  



We made it to the summit  (Little Stony Man).    SO SO SO gorgeous up there --but VERY windy  (which really felt good after that hike UP)...Elevation here was 3642 feet.... The elevation climb was 450 feet.  I could have sat  up there FOREVER!!!!!!  



After hiking down the mountain  (much easier--ha),   we drove on Skyline Drive and stopped at some overlooks.   This picture was taken when we hiked a short distance and got to Crescent Rock.    (Seems like this ole' mountain gal loves gorgeous views while sitting/standing on some rock cliffs!!!!! ha)



On our 2nd hike of the day,  we went on the Millers Head Trail looking for another overlook.  George took my picture around the pretty yellow flowers   (which incidentally were blooming EVERYWHERE we stopped this week).  WELL--I didn't do as well on this one since the hike was DOWN first and then back UP.... I hike better when I can go UP first.... I was also HOT (afternoon heat) and I was getting tired.   This hike was hard!   



On the Millers Head hike,  We stopped so that I would rest... I sat on a rock with a big hole under my back-side.... I told George I was sitting on the potty.... ha ha ha



Us  at Little Stony Man Cliffs (8/8/19);   A nice young man who reminded me of my hiking son, Mark,  asked if he could take our picture... Of course,  we said YES.  It was so windy that my hair was sticking out all over... I posted a funnier picture showing my wind-blown hair on Facebook last week..... I don't have a lot of hair --but it looked hilarious!!!!
OKAY---enough for today!!!!!   Hope you enjoyed my week with me!!!!!!   There are still two more days before getting home on 8/10.... We drove to Asheville on the 9th,  spent the night in a motel,  and visited BILTMORE on the morning of the 10th before heading home....   As usual,  I  have some great pictures from Biltmore --but I'll show them in another post!!!!!

Hope you enjoyed my Birthday Trip....  Hope you have had a great week.... My advice to all who are trying to stay healthy:   Get out in nature and enjoy this beautiful world.

Hugs,