Hybrid trillium blooming in the Pisgah National Forest, NC
Adventure Village Camping Trip With Gabe
Thursday May 5 through Saturday May 7, 2022
We took a camping trip with one set of grandchildren back in March. We owed our grandson Gabe a camping trip. We worked it out where we could take him for some quality time camping. I also timed it to coincide with the bloom time for hybrid trilliums I was wanting to see. I figured we could camp, see hybrid trilliums, go to O.P. Taylor's Toy Store, and work on hiking to the easier waterfalls I still needed to visit on Kevin Adam's list of 100. All those things would be doable and fun with Gabe.
We got to Adventure Village and the first morning it rained like crazy.
We filled up our day with a visit to O.P. Taylor's Toy Store. I visited Local Color, my favorite store for arts and craft items. We had a great time and Gabe picked out a blue Brüder van as his toy from the store. He has played with that thing nearly every day since! Great choice. We got a new Fuzzy the White Squirrel. The day still was nasty so we ate lunch and tried to wait it out. I got on my phone on google maps and began looking for indoor playgrounds for kids. I found one in Arden called Mountain Play Lodge which was open! We headed that way immediately. It was a great decision. Cost was $15 for all day. They also allow you to get a hand stamp or bracelet and come and go throughout the day freely.
He was playing in that part of the building when a little curly haired girl about his age noticed him. She went and laid down blocking the end of the slide. She just grinned at him. He backed up and went to try to come down the steps. She moved over and blocked him going down the steps. Back and forth she went until she had him laughing like crazy. He was saying "Nanny, make her stop?!" and I said "I cain't do nuttin' wid her." She clearly liked him and wanted to play and her sense of humor lines up very closely with everyone in our family. We like to aggravate one another a little. I let it go on quite awhile. Finally he asked me again to help him and I said loud enough she could hear me easily. Okay. I grabbed her and restrained her for a few seconds and said Now go! and he got out the slide and ran. She got tickled and started laughing. As soon as I released her she took off after him and chased him all around the playground. She had a little crush on Gabey and wanted to keep him. It didn't hurt him to get the Sadie Hawkins treatment. He was smiling about it when we left and did not even care when I teased him about it. He was worn out so we went back to the camper.
Day Two - Bubbling Spring Branch
We got up and went hiking after breakfast. Everything we did today was off the Blue Ridge Parkway. We packed us a picnic lunch. We started off by hiking to Lower and Upper Bubbling Spring Falls. It was not a long hike to either one, and I believed we'd enjoy it. We sure did. The weather today was pretty and up high it was cool. It was long sleeves or jacket weather. The pink shell azaleas were blooming in shades of deep pink and white. Sarvis berry trees were in bloom.
We found no one else hiking to the falls except us today. The trailhead is a busy one as part of the Mountains to Sea Trail, but we had the falls to ourselves today.
The boreal forest makes for soft tread under foot. The streams here are glittering with mica flecks and rocks streaked with all sorts of colors. We also saw painted trilliums blooming in several places.
Below: crossing Bubbling Spring Branch below a small cascade. The water is shimmering and the rocks have so many shapes, colors, tones and textures.
Below: This is the cascade and plunge pool from a different angle.
Below: Gabe and Fuzzy the Squirrel in the woods along the trail. Fuzzy hiked inside Gabe's shirt most of the time! He is even more tender hearted than I am. He makes everything into a pet. Right now he wants a squirrel, a cat, and an octopus for a pet.
Below: one of many easy creek crossings of Bubbling Spring Branch. All were rock hops. Gabe delighted in the creeks today.
We enjoyed how easy this hike was. It gave us plenty of time to hang around enjoying the scenery. We listened to the sound of the falls and the birds singing.
- The hybrid trillium site Jim put me onto was far larger than even he knew.
- I have only begun to scratch the surface of the hybrid trilliums in the Pisgah National Forest region.