total mileage: 13.44
time spent walking: 4hrs 1min
other exercise: two leisure strolls after thanksgiving dinners; one strenuous hike.
days off: 25
avg temp: not recorded
trip of the month: grandfather mountain, nc
for (part of) my birthday present from josh, we were supposed to go on a trip this fall. technically we were supposed to go on said trip back in february, then march, then april, and then it was postponed til september/october in which it became my "birthday present". now it's december and our passports are not getting any action for 2011. sigh. i have, however, made josh sign an affadavit that we will take a 2-3 week (hah yeah right) vacation next year.
i did approve the downgrading of the "vacation" from somewhere tropical to somewhere within driving distance because of my skin and it's whole situation. it's just easier to stay closer to home / haul your pharmacy with you in a trailer.
so, at the recommendation of fellow life/home decor/crafty blogger katie of bower power blog (who doesn't know me but i may have stalked her for over a year) i planned a little weekend in the mountains of north carolina. specifically, driving on the blue ridge parkway and going hiking at grandfather mountain.
after a lunch at tupelo honey cafe in asheville, we hopped on the brp to "enjoy the leaves".
(the fail noise again, becoming a recurring theme here)
we made it about 13 miles down the brp before coming to a road closed sign. whoomp whooooomp.
we turned around and took the road more frequently traveled to banner elk a little "ski" town with sugar mountain and beech mountain nearby. i had reserved a night at the little main street inn, a quaint b&b offering single or double suites with jacuzzi tubs and full kitchens (great value at only $89/night!)*.
(photo from their website)
we arrived after 4pm but it was a little too early for dinner, so we tried checking out some of the local shops. apparently in the winter they all close at 4pm. we settled for a beer and wine shop - i guess that's the only thing to do on a friday night - and then went to dinner at sorrentos bistro (carb-loading for all that exercise i do).
the next morning we hit up breakfast at the sugar mountain cafe and then went to grandfather mountain**. here we crossed the swinging bridge, one mile above sea level, and stood on the edge of the mountain. this whole ordeal was big for me as i am a big scaredy cat of heights. i faced some of those fears, but not all of them.
after checking out the bridge, we started up grandfather trail. i'll let the pictures do the talking. it was intense. i ran into a rock wall and chickened out just feet from the summit.
view from almost-the-summit of macrae peak
what the ladders to the top look like from 1.5 miles away
(with some camera zoom)
in summary, grandfather mountain is a worthwhile adventure.
roughly 1.5 miles in 1hr 18mins
*little main street did not compensate me in any way for the pr blurb. in fact they don't even know i blog unless maybe they googled me.
**grandfather mountain did not compensate me either***. in fact it costs $15 per adult to enter the 'park'. you can however hike in for free from a few different trailheads but i hear those are pretty intense hikes.
***while i'm clarifying/disclaiming, no business mentioned in this blog post compensated me. this trip was fully funded by our own personal bank account.