Saturday, December 29, 2012

Winter Wonderland at the Hike Inn

The second part of my winter vacation with my parents was 2-night trip to the Hike Inn.  I was thrilled to share this special place with my folks.  We got an early start the first day by staying overnight at Amicalola Falls State Park.  On the 5-mile hike to the Inn, we had clear views and saw a little snow on the ground.

On our second day, we set out on a dayhike on the Approach Trail towards Springer Mountain.  A mix of sleet and snow made the forest look incredibly beautiful.
My parents hiking in the ice.
A frigid wind was blowing hard at Nimblewill Gap, so we decided to turn around before getting to Springer.  I think I was probably the coldest, with my hands and feet frozen stiff.  Thankfully Dad gave me his mittens, which I layered over my own, finally feeling a bit better.  By the time we returned to the Hike Inn, it was snowing steadily, and we enjoyed soup and hot chocolate in the toasty dining hall.
Returning from our hike to the warmth of the Hike Inn.
One of my favorite things about staying at the Hike Inn is watching the sunrise while sipping hot drinks, so it was exciting that we had clear view on our last morning.
Delicious meals, especially the peach spoon bread.
The sun was finally out for our hike back down to Amicalola Falls State Park, but signs of the winter weather were everywhere.
Needle ice.
Needle ice formations were all along the trail.   They occur when the air is below freezing, but the soil and water in the soil is warmer than freezing.  The water at the surface freezes and pulls up more water via capillary action.
Beautiful ending to a wonderful trip.

No comments:

Post a Comment