August 8, 2006
|This week's hike was on the Smith Creek Trail in Unicoi State Park near Helen, GA. This was an election day in Georgia and a large number of our regular hikers are poll workers and could not hike. Still, a group of six enjoyed another great day for a hike!
HIKERS - Jack Jacobi, Bruce O'Connor, Doug Russell, Bob Thompson, Kurt Volker, and Sharon Volker .
TRAIL INFO. - Due to hot weather, the group decided to hike one way on the Smith Creek Trail to Anna Ruby Falls and on down to the Visitors Center. The trail is mostly in good shape except for a few blow-downs early in the hike. Lots of summertime wildflowers and a great lunch spot at the falls.
Hiking distance today - 5.5 miles.
Directions: Just north of Helen, GA turn right onto Hwy 356 and drive past the lake and take the first left and drive a half mile or so and look for the Little Brook Campground sign.
Another great day for a hike! Mostly sunny and hot, temperatures ranging from the mid 70's to the upper 80's..
FLOWERS IN BLOOM: Alum root, Bear's Foot, Whorled Coreopsis, Elephant's foot, Goldenrod, Heal-all, Mountain hydrangea, Mountain mint, Cranefly Orchid, Ratlesnake Plantain, Spiderwort, Thin-leaved Sunflower, Woodland Sunflower, Tick Trefoil, Dodder, and Joe Pye Weed.
BIRDS IDENTIFIED: American Crow, White breasted Nuthatch, Red-eyed Vireo, Pileated Woodpecker .
Trail-head at Little Brook Campground.
You have been warned!
There were some blow-downs early into the hike.
The Cranefly Orchids are blooming!
Crossing a cool mountain creek.
A Five-lined Skink! (Eumeces fasciatus)
Anna Ruby Falls!
Geology report: The falls are formed by a layer of hard quartzite.
Bears Foot (Polymnia uvedalia)
The OFHC gang for today's hike. (l-r)Kurt Volker, Jack Jacobi, Bob Thompson, Doug Russell, Karen Volker, and Bruce O'Connor.