Dry Falls, Whiteside Mountain , Sunset Rock - NC - July 28, 2009

Today, we traveled to Highlands, NC and did several short trails. Starting at Dry Falls then Whiteside Mountain followed by the Highlands Biological Station Trails, Rhododendron Trail and Sunset Rock.

HIKERS - Tonya Andrews, John Bellamy, June Bellamy, Karen Brown, Phil Brownrigg, Pam Euliss, Dave Hinson, Tyler Hinson, Bill Hunt, Jack Jacobi, Bob Magee, Joe Metzger, Bruce O'Connor, Jeanne O'Connor, Don Preece, Donna Presley, Tony Presley, Vic Robson, Dan Ross and Lynne Saporito.

TRAIL INFORMATION - Some of the most spectacular views in the U.S. Dry Falls is a short walk down to a spectacular and unique waterfall. This trail goes behind the falls to the opposite side providing only a slight mist to the walker depending on the wind conditions. Whiteside Mountain is a spectacular loop trail that takes the hiker over the rock cliffs at the summit of the mountain giving great views of the surrounding mountains and views of the massive rock cliffs. The Nature Center trails are very nice and informative and Sunset Rock and Sunrise Rock both provide more nice mountain views.

Today's hiking distance - 5.6 miles total. Difficulty - Moderately easy.

Directions: Dry Falls - From Highlands, take Hwy 64 west for just over 3 miles from it's intersection with Hwy 106. Look for a brown and white forest service sign for Dry Falls and turn left into the parking area. Whiteside Mountain - From downtown Highlands, go east on US 64 for 5.5 miles to the Whiteside Mountain Road sign turn right on paved road NC 1600 and go .6 mile. Highlands Biological Station - From Dillard, GA: Take Hwy 106 to Highlands and turn right onto Main Street. Continue straight through town. Turn left onto Sixth St. and make a right turn into the Station driveway.

Another great day for a hike! Partly cloudy and cool. Temperatures ranged from 68 degrees to 74 degrees

FLOWERS IN BLOOM: Woodland Sunflower, Indian pipes, Spotted Jewelweed, Button Bush, Purple Flowering Raspberry, Teaberry, Pitcher Plant, Spikenard, Alumroot, Yellowroot, Micheaux's Saxifrage, Mountain Hydrangea, Summersweet, Rosebay Rhododendrun, Stinging Nettle, Evening Primrose, Queen Anne's Lace, Bergamot, White Yarrow, Hawkweed, Daisy Fleabane, Yellow Wood Sorrell, Heal All, Lady's Thumb, White Wood Aster, Turk's Cap Lily, Leatherflower, Pale Corydalis, Whorled Coreopsis, Sunflower, Tall Bluet, Starry Campion, St. John's Wort, Angelica, Lantern Vine, Joe Pye Weed, Stacys, Phlox, Evening Primrose, Whorled Loosestrife, and Goldenrod.

BIRDS IDENTIFIED: Rufous-sided Towhee, Gray Catbird, Northern Mockingbird, Dark-eyed Junco.

Other Fauna - Snapping Turtle, Mllipede and Woodchuck.

scroll down for photos.......

Approaching Dry Falls!
A rare opportunity to walk behind a waterfall!
Looking out from behind the falls.
Simply spectacular!
Fungus of the week!
The first viewpoint from Whiteside Mt.
Breathtaking rock cliffs!
North Carolina mountains.
Awesome Devil's Courthouse!
We had lunch at Highlands Biological Station and walked the nature trails.
Beautiful moss covered rock cliff along the Rhododendron Trail.
Taking in the views at Sunset Rock.
A very nice place to relax and explore the huge rock face above Highlands.
The OFHC gang for today's hike. (l-r kneeling) Dave Hinson, Joe Metzger, Bruce O'Connor and Tony Presley. (l-r middle) Tyler Hinson, Karen Brown, June Bellamy, Jeanne O'Connor, Lynne Saporito, Vic Robson, Pam Euliss and Bob Magee. (l-r back) Phil Brownrigg, Dan Ross, John Bellamy, Bill Hunt, Jack Jacobi, Don Preece, Donna Presley, Tonya Andrews.
While we were visiting Dry Falls today, we met Bobby Coggins from Franklin, NC. He was making a YouTube video of the falls. Here is the very nice video that is on YouTube. Some OFHC members are included in the video... He also took our group photo today.

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