First off I would like to appologize for my lack or writing the past couple of months. Everything has been crazy busy lately and to be honest, I haven’t really shot a lot of stuff on my own. I have been shooting a lot of weddings lately on top of all the other work I have had to do the past couple of months. Anywho, on to the real story.

Last week my family (girlfriend, mom, dad, sister, grandmom, and nephew) and I took a four day vacation to the North Carolina Mountains. It was everything I needed and more. We stayed in a cabin out in the woods, right near a lake. Our only connection to the outside world was basic cable TV and a land line. No cell phone signal, no internet. It was an amazing way to disconnect from everything else.

The first full day we were there my dad and I rode our bikes to the top of Mount Mitchell 20 miles away. If you are unfamiliar with Mount Mitchell it is the highest point on the east coast, toping out at 6,684 ft. The 20 mile trip to the top of Mount Mitchell consist of about 19 miles of constant climbing (see the graph from my Garmin at the bottom of the page for more details about the climb and my workout). The temperature on the Blue Ridge Parkway, the route we took to get to Mount Mitchell, was in the mid to high 70’s and mostly sunny. When we reached the peak we found an entirely different climate. The top of the mountain was engulfed IN a cloud, wind was at about 10mph and the temperature was 65 degrees. The record high temperature at the top of Mount Mitchell is 82 degrees and the average for July is 68. It was the craziest thing to be so cold my teeth were chattering in the middle of the day in July!

The next day the whole group went to the top of Mount Mitchell and hiked around a bit. Leaving the kid and my grandmom in the care of my dad; Vanessa, my mom, sister, and I decided to hike to Mount Craig, the second highest peak on the east coast (only 37 ft lower in elevation than Mount Mitchell). As we hiked the 1.5 miles through the frasier furs that call these mountains their home, we left behind all the people and noise of Mount Mitchell and found silence. On the way there we ran into a few other folks but nothing like the mad house that we left in the parking lot.

When we reached the peak of Mount Craig we found a view that made the hike all worth it. We all sat there in silence for a while, taking in the breathtaking view. The panorama I took can only give you an idea about how amazing the view actually was. I would highly suggest going to see it for yourself.

The rest of the time we spent in North Carolina we explored the areas near our cabin. Being on the edge of the Pisgah National Forrest meant there was plenty to see and do right at our door step. We rode our bikes to an amazing waterfall, walked along and played in the river, and explored the dirt roads that lead us deeper into the National Forrest.

Like I said earlier, it was a much needed vacation and I enjoyed every minute of it. This trip really reminded me how much I love the mountains. We didn’t even come close to doing everything we wanted to do but that just means we will have to return sometime in the future. Below are some of my shots from the trip, I hope you enjoy them.