Thanks to my new status as unemployed, on the first beautiful day after I turned in my equipment, the Lidkids and I headed for the mountains. We opted for Stone Mountain, which we have done a few times before, and is about 4.5ish miles and 1000 feet of elevation gain. Hazel had never gone with us before, so I was a little worried, but I shouldn’t have been.
We have done the trail starting from the upper lot, hiking counterclockwise. Awful. And from the lower lot, hiking counter clockwise. Also awful. This time we started at the lower lot and hiked clockwise, starting off with a steep climb up most of the elevation in the first 3/4 mile. Hazel led the charge, while the rest of us huffed and puffed and begged for respite.
One of our favorite trail amenities is cables. I don’t know why. They signify danger and/or extreme exertion. We are gluttons for punishment, I guess.
Once we were safely at the top, our fearless leader allowed us to take a break. We took in the views. Took some photos. Some selfies. Etc.
And then we began the journey down, which consists of a series of switchbacks that I was glad to be traveling down instead of up this time around.
We spotted a bit of spring wildlife on this hike, including but not limited to this orange lizard type creature and what we think are some sort of eggs in a puddle.
After passed the upper lot, we came to the top of the waterfalls and began the trek down the approximately nine billion stairs. Once again, so glad to be going down and not up.
We took the little detour down to the bottom of the falls, to cool off in the icy mountain waters.
Our last hiking amenity was the old homestead at the bottom of the mountain. We were pretty tired so we didn’t stay long, but some lovely fellow hikers that we met along the way passed us and offered to take a family pic, so I took them up on it, to prove that I actually participated in this hike.
From here, it was a pretty flat and easy trail back to the lower lot and we decided that this was the best direction and starting point for this hike. Or maybe I decided.
Anyhoo. We stopped for the mandatory ice cream at the Stone Mountain General Store on our way out and it was a lovely day. So much better than virtual teaching.