A few months ago, I blogged about a trip to DeSoto Falls in Northern Alabama, and also reminisced about the grandeur of my native Niagara Falls. Last week, I hiked a steep trail & seemingly never-ending stair steps to view Amicalola Falls, a 729’ beauty located in Northern Georgia. It is the tallest cascade in the Southeastern U.S. The $5 parking fee was a bargain in exchange for entrance to the well maintained Amicalola Falls State Park and Lodge.
My companion had hiked the trail dozens of times before, but I reveled in the newness of the experience. A three generation Latino family leapfrogged us all the way to the top. The little boys kept at us like taskmasters, bowing from the waist and saying “Ladies first”. The little girls shyly waved as they passed. Grandma made small talk as we caught our breath on benches along the way. A young Mom cuddled her newborn in a front pack, while Dad held his toddler firmly by the waist band as the tyke climbed a few steps using all fours. At the top of the waterfalls, my heart rate was sky-high, but Grandpa literally ran circles around the bigger kids, in an impromptu game of tag. I want his kind of energy when I grow up!
We all oohed and aahed as a shaft of sunlight sent a shower of sparkling diamonds down the waterfall towards us. Which was outdone only by the panoramic view of the Blue Ridge Mountains during our buffet dinner in the lodge. Someday I’ll return to hike the 8.5 mile trail to the start of the Appalachian Trail at Springer Mountain. I’ve enjoyed hiking about 175 of the 2,175 miles of the AT, and appreciated a talk at the local library this week about the history of the trail.
It’s so important to our psyches, families and world community to appreciate and preserve the natural places around us. My wish is that this blog inspires you to get off the beaten track, explore, and be awed.
Think: Where are your favorite places to roam? Where are the places you’ve been meaning to check out, but haven’t yet?
Say: Make a list of all the adventures, experiences, and places you want to discover for yourself.
Do: Choose one item from your list, and make a date with yourself or a loved one to visit that place within the next 2 weeks. Then, check a new item off the list every few weeks. Dare yourself to go places you’ve only dream of!