Monday, June 30, 2014

Day Hikes on the AT

Two Friday hikes from early June with Newcomers Hiking....

Thunder Ridge to Sunset Fields going southward on the AT:  
Ferns everywhere
We shuttled cars for this hike which was about 4 miles with a slight 500 foot ascent.
The trail passing under "The Guillotine"
Easy to see how it got it's name!
After walking under, looking back down the trail with the "Guillotine" almost at eye level
The next Friday, we went back to the same area 
and shuttled cars for another four mile jaunt. 
Again going south on the AT
this time starting at Sunset Fields (where we ended the week before)
and stopping at the Floyd Field/Mountain area.

I thought this little salamander was cute....
well honestly at first I thought it was a red lizard but then realized it was pretty unlizard-like.
Fact of the day is that this is the "eft" stage for the Eastern Newt 
it stays in this vibrantly red spotted juvenile stage 
for 1-3 years living entirely on land 
and then.... presto-chango,
it becomes brownish green, develops a flat ridged fin tail 
and becomes entirely aquatic (but still breathes air) 
for it's adult life. 
Don't say you've never learned anything by reading blogs!  

The rhododendrons that we'd hoped to see the week before were in blossom
Our already slow hiking turned to glacial speed
because of all the photo taking!
Got to stop and smell the roses though!  
Though it was foggy,
marveled at the view from the Black Rock Overlook
Foggy Blue Ridge as seen from Black Rock
And turned the camera on ourselves
At Black Rock (photo by Debbie Maurer)

1 comment:

  1. What a fun day and a beautiful place to hike. The rhododendrons reminded me of Portland. Enjoyed seeing the red newt...wish I'd see something colorful like that here. Amazing the metamorphosis that takes place with that reptile. Thanks for stopping by. So nice to meet another Louisianian! :)

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