Today we all set out to hike around Mt. Pisgah, but since it's dipped below freezing lately, the Blue Ridge Parkway was closed and we couldn't drive up to it. Instead, we hiked the Mountains-to-Sea trail that runs along the parkway. We hiked up and over two tunnels. One one side of the ridge, it was cold and windy. On the other side of the ridge, it was cold and windy, but you could feel the warmth rising from sun baking everything around you.
That there's the mountain we wanted to tackle. We were at the turnaround point and decided not to press on and hike Mt. Pisgah. Some other day!
On the way back we decided to walk the Parkway. While I like getting out and taking pictures and posing in front of overlooks, hiking doesn't really get me jazzed. Most of the time I was just watching Robb's feet and trucking along behind him, not really looking much at Nature. So, walking a closed-down road through a National Forest seemed like a good idea to me.
It was pretty cool. The two tunnels we had hiked over we now hiked through, on an abandoned highway. It was neat to see the new growth on the trees damaged in the ice storm a few years ago. Most of the tree trunks are covered in a mint green lichen, and some of them had new red branches growing up from the forest. There's always neat moss to check out, and we got a great view of the mountains as we walked along.
As we neared the car, I saw a bluebird and pointed it out to Robb. Soon we realized there were lots of bluebirds; eight at least, and they flew along from branch to branch in front of us. Such intense blue. At first it seemed like we were scaring them off, but they flew along in front of us for 10 minutes, and when we crossed the road to go to the car, they hopped the road, too, escorting us along.