Sunday, September 27, 2009

Chimney Rock State Park-September 28

We hiked in this park yesterday afternoon,after touring Asheville. As one tour book describes this park:"it brings the best of the mountains together in one place". It is a very beautiful park,filled with some awesome geological formations. The most famous of these formations is Chimney Rock-which I have pictured here. We took an elevator to the top,but hiked down,taking a detour off that trail to Hickory Nut Falls. I have a picture of the falls here. We also made a stop at Moonshiner's Cave. That was a very deep cave,(actually one could not go very far in it before it dropped off)which had a whiskey still on display there. This park was made possible by a doctor from St.Louis! At the turn of the century Dr.Lucius Morse came to this area looking for more favorable climate. He was impressed by the huge formations of stone found in the park and purchased 64 acres of Chimney Rock Mountain. The park remained in his family until 2006,when the family sold it to the state of North Carolina. By the way,shortly after we entered the park we were greeted by a woodchuck sitting by the side of the road. It did not seemed perturbed by the traffic whizzing by him,he just sat there contentedly munching on the food which he held in his paws. And also today we heard strange noises coming from one tree-sounded like pieces of wood being slapped together. There were ravens in the tree. I did not think they made that kind of noise,but I discovered later that, besides having a variety of vocalizations,they also have non-vocalizations as wing whistles and bill snapping. I am sure it was the later which we heard.

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