Tuesday, October 18, 2011

October 11, 2011. Caryville, TN.

Our friends Tom and Pat own a place in Caryville, TN, and they invited us for a cycling vacation. Of course we are always more than ready for cycling! Fred and Doris (pictured below) and Bill and I drove together and arrived in time for a home cooked dinner and the baseball game yesterday. Unfortunately the Tigers lost that game after 11 innings. Tuesday morning it was raining so we did not ride our bikes as planned. It cleared up in the middle of the day, too late for cycling, but not too late to take a hike! Tom and Pat live within sight of Cumberland Mountain, and Tom (below) took us there to hike a trail to the top.

He recommended we all bring a walking stick, but I did not.... fortunately he had a few spares. We really needed them, as the trail was steep and rocky.

Otis (above) had 2 walking sticks, since he has a bad ankle. Pat did not go on the hike; she needed to go to visit her ailing father.

As we ascended the trail we saw various stages of waterfalls feeding into the river at the bottom.The photos above give you an idea of how steep and rocky this trail is. We followed many switchbacks to get to the top. Tom showed us a very large rock partway up and we speculated on how it got there...We finally reached the summit, where there was a flag already planted. We took a break there and looked down on our surroundings.The colors are just beginning to change here.On the way back down I started picking up bottles and cans that people left along the trail. At first I flattened them and put them in my pockets. When my pockets were full the others helped me carry things, and we put some in the backpacks.... when we were nearly at the bottom I found a plastic bag, which we easily filled.We ended up with quite a pile of stuff... and we did not go far off the trail. We could see more junk on the banks of the river below us; we did what we could. Now if only we could convince people to carry out what they carry in!

We reconvened at Tom and Pat's, showered and went out to dinner at a local Mexican Restaurant. Then we watched another ballgame--this time the Tigers won! Yay! This was the third game of the 7-game ALCS series, and the first win for our home team.

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