No run for this girl this morning, we headed to the mountains to bike and hike instead! We drove past the Franconia Notch State Park the other day and decided that today would be a good day to do our last bit of exploring before we leave tomorrow. Our first adventure was a 5 mile bike ride down the mountain, stopping to hike and take pictures along the way. We weren't really sure what we were getting ourselves into.. the lady at the desk was fairly vague, and we obviously aren't mountain women. We hopped on the trail and got peddling! Our first pit stop was at The Basin.
From their website: This large pothole in the Pemigewasset River, 30 feet in diameter and 15 feet deep, had its beginning some 25,000 years ago as the Ice Age came to a close. Water flowing from the melting glacier that filled Franconia Notch eroded the solid granite bedrock. During the thousands of years that followed sand and stones were whirled around by the force of the river causing a boring action that left the sidewalls smooth. The rock formation seen in the stream bed at the outlet has been known for generations as "The Old Man's Foot". Samuel Eastman in his 1858 White Mountain Guide called this spot "One of the beautiful haunts of Nature, a luxurious and delicious bath fit for the ablutions of a goddess." It took everything in me not to jump into The Basin, it was terribly tempting! Like I've said many times before, the pictures just don't capture the beauty, but I tried!
After spending a little time watching the water swirl in the huge 'bowl' we headed further down the mountain. The end of our bike ride brought us to The Flume Gorge. We got a bite to eat, purchased our tickets, and started on the 2 mile uphill hike to the Flume. Good thing I had on my new hiking boots! I just looked up these shoes online and they're $120! I got them for $109 at the store down the street, what a deal! The hike up the mountain wasn't too terrible.. especially for what was waiting at the top! The waterfalls were spectacular! Yesterday at the baths, the falls were pretty small but had some strength behind them. The falls at the Flume were intense! No way would I want to fall into those! It was extremely beautiful and I'm so thankful that I got the chance to see them.
Before we left the park, we took a short tram ride to the top of the mountain. It was neat learning about all the places we could see from the summit.. including CANADA! The furthest you can see on a good day is around 125 miles. Wow! My camera battery died before we got on the tram so I don't have any pictures.. and the ones I took with my sister's camera weren't too great. The clouds in the distance caused the color of the photos to be strange. Sorry! One funny thing that happened on the way up was we passed the other tram. Our tram was red and their tram was yellow. The guy leading the 'tour' told us to wave hello to 'Mustard!' It was also funny because their tram was packed and our tram was quite comfortable. The guide said that the car can fit 80 people in it! That would have made the trip up the mountain a little more frightening!
Our trip comes to and end tomorrow.. and I'm actually glad that it was as long as it was. When I normally go on vacation I end up thinking 'That trip was awesome but it went just 1 day too long'. I have not thought that yet on this trip. :) Now, yes, I would rather be on the morning flight to Indy versus the afternoon flight, but I think getting to relax before the flight will also be nice. I wanted to thank all my readers again for keeping up with my blog! Who knows where I'll be posting from next.. or what it will be about! :) xo!
While Mom went out and did girly stuff.. SRD and I went waterfall huntin'! I had found a place online called Diana's Baths, an apparently well known place to go and spend a sunny Sunday afternoon. SRD and I drove through the White Mountain National Park to get there. I've never driven through the mountains before.. apparently I'm not very good at it. I was driving 'so fast' that 2 cars pulled off the road so I could pass them.. I guess I'm made for highway driving instead.. and the 70MPH speed limit in Indiana! 90 minutes later we arrived at the parking area. We were supposed to pay to park but 1) it was on the honor system and 2) we didn't have any cash to stick in the little slot. I figured maybe me blogging about it would get some extra folks out there to make up for the $3 we didn't pay. There was a 1 mile 'hike' to the falls. It wasn't really a hike.. more like a nice walk through the woods on a gravel path.
Once the trees opened up I lost my breath for a second. There were about 10 smaller waterfalls surrounded by pools of chilly water. There were tons of people around; playing in the falls, sunbathing on the rocks, or taking pictures of the sights. SRD and I hiked to the highest level of the falls to find that it was a bit more deserted than the rest of them. We liked the peace and quite.. even though the falls were smaller than the rest. My first instinct was to jump in the water, good thing I didn't, it was freezing! After warming up in the sun and working up my courage to get in the water, I got (more like slid/fell) in. Brrr! I had a ton of fun climbing up the waterfall and jumping around on the rocks. After a bit of book reading and vitamin D consuming.. SRD and I decided to get back to the resort.
We went to dinner at Gordi's Fish and Steak House. I wasn't sure what I was going to get.. normally Salmon.. but I wanted something different! As soon as I walked in the door I saw a sign with the daily specials. Swordfish is the catch of the day? Well, I've never had swordfish.. why not try it tonight! Of course.. I ordered the lemon cake as my appetizer and indulged in the salad bar before my entree' came out. After our server literally messed up every single one of our drink orders, our dinner came out. I had no idea what swordfish tasted like but I dove right in and took a big bite. It was very strange feeling.. but tasted just like any other fish. It was very dense.. not like most fish. Most just kinda falls apart when you eat it, but not this! I almost felt like I needed to cut it with a knife! It was a new dish for me and I absolutely loved it!
After dinner we took a drive down the road to find a secret spot to watch the sunset. While Mom was getting her massage, an older lady informed her of the best spot to catch a great view. And what a great view we had! The sun slowly sank for about an hour and then it just dropped right behind the mountains! The sky turned the most wonderful red orange, it was gorgeous.
Tomorrow we bike through the State Park! 9 miles down the mountain! So excited! xo!