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 > N GA & SC - NOV trip to meet Kohldad

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GoinThisAway

middle TN

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Posted: 12/05/09 07:04pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You've seen Kohldad's trip report where he met his DS at Devils Fork SP. Well, this is the DS with the rest of the story. Before meeting up in upstate SC, the DH and I spent a few days in north GA. This was only our third outing in the TC and was to be our longest at 4 nights. We stopped the first night at Vogel SP on Hwy 129 near Blairsvile. This is one of GA's oldest state parks whose main attraction is a small lake.
[image]
The campground sites are large with lots of trees that would make this a shady place in the summer. I bet it gets pretty crowded then but there were only a handful of campers here in NOV.
[image]
The next morning we hiked a trail along a turbulent creek. Tropical Storm Ida had passed through the area just a few days before and droped a lot of rain. Our timing was perfect though. We had a cloudy drive over from middle TN but the sky cleared out for the rest of the trip. Temps were highs in the 70s and lows in the 40's - perfect camping weather!
[image]
We spotted this little fellow along the trail.
[image]
But luckily no sign of this fellow.
[image]
All right. This is the first post I've tried to put pix in so I'm gonna see how it's working. Oops! Glad I checked. Got it fixed I think. So on with the story ...
After our hike we packed up and headed out. Driving north from Vogel SP we turned off Hwy 180 on a spur road that goes up to Brasstown Bald.
[image]
We gleefully passed by these warning signs at the entrance.
[image]
The road had numerous twists ...
[image]
... and even U-turns ...
[image]
... climbing steadily all the while.
[image]
We finally reach the end of the road but evidently not the end of the trail.
[image]
So we pay a $4 parking fee and head up the trail.
[image]
Near the top we find a sign that identifies this site as the highest point in GA.
[image]
Finally, our goal is at hand ... then we find out that workers are winterizing the tower and we will not be able to go all the way to the top.
[image]
We were still able to go up to the base of the tower though where we find a beautiful view in all directions.
[image]

[image]
Too soon, however, it was time to head back to the camper. Looking at the size of the parking lot, I'd say there must be a crowd of people here during the summer. That's one reason I like winter camping!
[image]
Later, we spot this uniquely detailed car. I just had to take some photos for the pet sitter that feeds our pal, Buddy, when we're on the road.
[image]
Heading down Hwy 348 towards Helen, we cross the Appalachian Trail.
[image]
Sticking with the high country, we set up camp for the night at Black Rock Mtn SP off Hwy 441 near Clayton GA. This park is the highest in GA at 3,640 feet and sits astride the eastern continental divide. We noted that the road in is nearly as winding and steep as the Brasstown Bald road. We also noted that sites in the first loop are at nearly a right angle to the loop road making them hard to back into while those in the second loop are better oriented but this loop is actually a spur that has a very tight turnaround at the end. Thank goodness for truck campers!
[image]
The next morning we go up to the visitor center where the DH finds a nice place to enjoy a cup of hot tea and the view of Clayton.
[image]

[image]
On the way out of the park, we stop at an overlook where I can just see the campground road and a tent on the next hill thanks to another advantage of winter camping ... you can see more with the leaves off the trees.
[image]
Since we had to pay $5 for ad GA parks day pass as part of our campground fee, we decide to stop at Tallulah Gorge SP anlong Hwy 441 on our way to SC. This is one of GA's newer parks and features a gorge two miles long and 1,000 feet deep. Pretty dramatic for this part of the country!
[image]
In 1970 one of the Flying Wallenda's walked a tightrope over the gorge, stopping along the way to do two headstands. This is all that remains of the tower that secured his cable on the north rim.
[image]
We drive on down to SC where I make a brief stop at my alma mater, Clemson University, and visit a few old professors before going on to Devils Fork SP. Our timing was perfect as the DH and I just had time to drive through the campground and pick out two nice sites before Kohldad and family arrived. The DB did a good job with his trip report so I'll just add a few of my favorite photos from this part of our trip starting with a view of the lake and a look at how clear the water is.
[image]

[image]
You have to wear bright colors on the trail during hunting season and Kohldad's shirt sure was that.
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[image]

[image]

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See, we did manage to have a fire one night!
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Unfortunately, our family get together comes to an end and we part ways. The DH and I head for TN, taking one last look back at Lake Jocassee as we head west over the mountains.
[image]

* This post was last edited 12/05/09 08:00pm by GoinThisAway *   View edit history


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sleepy

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Posted: 12/05/09 08:45pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We used to travel some of the same area along 441... you found some nice places that we didn't know were there.

Thanks for posting... now we'll have to go back!


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BradW

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Posted: 12/05/09 10:14pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Cool photos; thanks for posting. I like that area over there in north Ga.

Brad


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c.traveler2

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Posted: 12/06/09 02:48am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Very nice trip you guys had,enjoyed all your photos.


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TwoMaineiacs

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Posted: 12/06/09 06:59am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks for the report and photos. We haven't been down into Georgia yet so marked those places on our "to go see" map.


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silversand

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Posted: 12/06/09 07:04am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Nice Report. Many thanks.

Great to see that Georgia looks like Quebec today in terms of "fall-like" [emoticon] It's completely bare here, the ground does not have permanent freeze yet, and we have one winter flower still flowering! Still looks like mid October out. Hope, and, it looks like we'll see a "green X-mas" this year. The first since '04.

Cheers,
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luv2skyski

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Posted: 12/06/09 09:21am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Great trip report and beautiful pictures. Been to several of the places you visited. Never been to Vogel, though it's on the list.

If you ever head back into GA and the state parks I highly recommend getting a Friends of Georgia State Parks and Historic Sites pass. It give you two free nights of camping in any of the state parks and two passes on the Sam Shortline Excursion Train out of Georgia Veterans state park. Plus you don’t have to pay the daily ($5) visitor pass per day fee.

Over Thanksgiving weekend we purchased our 3rd yearly pass and it paid for itself immediately. The family pass cost is $70. We used our two free nights ($50) and we stayed in the park for 4 nights ($5 per day visitor pass: total $20)

Did I mention that you get a 10% discount on any overnight stay? That means we actually saved $5 (2 nights at $25 a night).

Thanks again for the trip report.

Happy camping, Dave.


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GoinThisAway

middle TN

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Posted: 12/06/09 08:20pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

sleepy wrote:

We used to travel some of the same area along 441... you found some nice places that we didn't know were there.

Thanks for posting... now we'll have to go back!


I grew up just over the line in SC and didn't know these places were there. We used to head up to the mountains all the time but I remember it being mostly NC or VA. A pretty good piece of the area we were in is part of the Chattahoochee National Forest. Next time we'll have to check that out!

GoinThisAway

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Posted: 12/06/09 08:33pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

luv2skyski wrote:

Great trip report and beautiful pictures. Been to several of the places you visited. Never been to Vogel, though it's on the list.

If you ever head back into GA and the state parks I highly recommend getting a Friends of Georgia State Parks and Historic Sites pass. It give you two free nights of camping in any of the state parks and two passes on the Sam Shortline Excursion Train out of Georgia Veterans state park. Plus you don’t have to pay the daily ($5) visitor pass per day fee.

Over Thanksgiving weekend we purchased our 3rd yearly pass and it paid for itself immediately. The family pass cost is $70. We used our two free nights ($50) and we stayed in the park for 4 nights ($5 per day visitor pass: total $20)

Did I mention that you get a 10% discount on any overnight stay? That means we actually saved $5 (2 nights at $25 a night).

Thanks again for the trip report.

Happy camping, Dave.


Thanks for the tip, Dave. I'll definitely have to get one of those. Most of our camping trips will have to be short ones as the DH and I still work. GA would be a good place to meet up with Kohldad too so I'm sure we'll make more visits to your area. I've got my eye on the Okefenoke Swamp and Cumberland Island. Any suggestions on these areas?
Phyllis

narcodog

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Posted: 12/06/09 08:53pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If you had looked due West from Bald Mtn you would be looking at my house. Did you happen to see it?[emoticon]

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