Day 218, Year 6 Another Waterfall and a Suspension Bridge
Date: Monday, May 30, 2011
Weather: Yet Another Beautiful, Sunny Day
Location: “Down the Road” Cabin near Blue Ridge, Georgia

Our last day here was spent making sure we have seen all of the local sights. We started with an early morning walk up to Long Creek Falls. The walk was on a trail where the Appalachian Trail and the Benton MacKaye Trail met. It was supposed to be 0.9 miles to the falls, but we managed to stretch that a bit. We saw some rushing water to our left, so we walked down the hill thinking that might be the falls. It was a small falls, but not the 25-foot drop we were looking for. So we hiked back up to the trail and kept climbing until we could see falls to our left once again. But we saw no way to get there, so we backtracked, took a side trail, and ended up at another small falls-still not the right one. We then continued our climb and finally did come to an official sign that said “Long Creek Falls.” We met some hikers and some other tourists at the falls. By the time we got back to the van it was noon. Time flies when you’re enjoying beautiful walks in the mountains. Our next stop was again on the Benton MacKaye Trail where we only had to walk 0.5 miles to a 265-foot suspension bridge over the Toccoa River. People were enjoying their Memorial Day on the river kayaking, tubing, and fishing.

We enjoyed our walk across the bridge and then headed back to the “Down the Road” cabin. Lee and Mary Ellen own the cabin jointly with their daughter Michelle and her husband Jim. When they bought the cabin, it was fully furnished and ready to move into, but they dreamed about future improvements “down the road”-thus, the name. Lee and Mark worked together to clean out the rain gutters, I did a laundry, and all of us prepared for our trips home tomorrow. Late in the afternoon our daughter Heather called and we had a Skype call where Sam and Jonah met Uncle Lee and Aunt Mary Ellen.

We have had a fabulous few days here in the mountains of northern Georgia. Lee and Mary Ellen have been wonderful hosts and have made sure that we have seen everything of interest in the area. If we had more time, we would love to do longer hikes, but the hikes we did take were perfect for the time here. I have enjoyed getting reacquainted with the plants and trees of the Appalachian Mountains. We were so very lucky to arrive here with the Mountain Laurel in full bloom-so beautiful. And the rhododendron on Brasstown Bald was spectacular. So thank you, Mary Ellen and Lee, for a wonderful welcome home.

110530 Day 218 North Georgia–Long Creek Falls and Swinging Bridge