July 26, 2005
|HIKERS - Don Alducin, Sharada Alducin, Ray Hopper, Dick Metzgar, Steve Metzgar, Wanda Miller, Wayne Miller, Bob Presley, Donna Presley, Tony Presley, Dan Ross, Doug Russell, Bob Thompson.
TRAIL INFO. - On this hot summer day, we decided to hike on four short trails in the Highlands, NC area.
We first visited Dry Falls, then the Highlands Botanical Gardens Nature Trail, the Sunset Rock Trail, and Whiteside Mountain Trail.
Total hiking distance today - 5+ mi. Directions: Dry Falls is a spectacular waterfall a short drive west of Highlands on Hwy. 64. Highlands Botanical Garden is located on East Main Street, approximately 1/4 mile from the center of town. Sunset Rock Trail is across the street from the Botanical Gardens and the spectacular Whiteside Mountain trail is between Highlands and Cashiers, NC.
Another great day for a hike! mosty sunny with temperatures ranging from the mid 70's to the upper 80's.
FLOWERS IN BLOOM: Teaberry, Heal All, Whorled Loosestrife, Rosebay Rhododendrun, Sweet Shrub, Tall Bluets, Bergamot, Oxeye Daisy, Spikenard, Alum Root, Yellowroot, Micheaux's Saxifrage, Stinging Nettle, St. John's Wort, Hawkweed, Turk's Cap Lily, Bush Honeysuckle, Pale Corydalis, Coreopsis, Heart-leafed Aster, Leather Flower, Starry Campion, Spiderwort, Asiatic Dayflower, Evening Primrose, Whorled Coreopsis.
FAUNA IDENTIFIED: Red Squirrel, American Crow, Towhee, Tufted Titmouse, Blue Jay, Mourning Dove, Junco.
Our first stop of the day - beautiful Dry Falls.
This falls offers a rare opportunity to walk behind the falls
through a cooling mist to the other side.
On the other side of the falls,
we find a very nice viewing platform.
The Highlands Botanical Gardens has a nice network of Nature Trail loops. Here, the trail loops around this nice lake.
We walked the Sunset Rock Trail up to this rock-faced mountain-top that looks over Highlands, NC.
Next, we hiked the Whiteside Mountain loop trail.
One of the most spectacular short trails in the Southeast!
You walk along the top of the mountain
with awesome views of the rock cliffs.
A breathtaking rock cliff!
A few of today's wildflowers. (top left clockwise)
Bee Balm, Turk's Cap Lily, Rosebay Rhododendron, Bergamot.
The OFHC gang for today's hike. (l-r front) Doug Russell, Donna Presley, Wanda Miller, Sharada Alducin, and Tony Presley
(l-r standing) Dan Ross, Wayne Miller, Steve Metzgar, Dick Metzgar, Bob Thompson, Ray Hopper, Don Alducin, and Bob Presley.