Friday, March 25, 2011

Lake Lure Shoreline in Spring

Sometimes I just have to turn off the TV, put the newspaper away and get away from it all.  Yesterday was one of those days.  It was a cool blustery day but the skies were deep blue and the sun was out.  My husband and I took a drive down to Lake Lure, dropping about a thousand feet in elevation.  Spring is further along here and trees were leafing out.  Azaleas, red buds and maples were showing their colors and some daffodils still held on. We even saw some wisteria in full bloom - in March no less!


Boathouse with deck and the island to the left.

The cottages along the lake are built into steep hillsides with no yard to speak of - just the lake.  Most have boat houses and build decks on top of them.  We drove out to the far reaches of the lake and onto a small island.  One lone boat zipped under the bridge as I stood in the howling wind to take photos.

Yellow for FMTSO!

Many of the homes here sit well below the road.  Parking is above the house and stairs take you down to the entrance and multitude of decks over the lake.  It must be lovely to look out over the water from every place in the house. The sizes range from tiny bungalows to sprawling mansions.

A tiny island home.

A mansion on the mainland.
Another island home.
What a view!
The day was ending as we headed home but my spirits were lifted after this excursion to another world!  Hope you enjoyed the tour too.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Welcome Spring!

Spring officially arrives today March 20, 7:21 P.M. EDT.  Our yard and neighborhood are ablaze with color - sunny yellow forsythia, tiny violets, pink, lilac and fuchsia phlox, rosy cherry blossoms and daffodils in every shade of yellow and white.  Wishing you all a very warm wonderful spring!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Happy St Patrick's Day!

This was not an easy capture - my cats are very skittish of any new object and will run in panic from a simple hat.  My trick is to sneak up on them sleeping, try to gently place something on them, and  take a quick picture before they freak.  Georgie, on the right tolerates things better than Sam on the left.  He looks a bit nervous and if I put the pin a little to his side he backed away!

Chica my 20 year old cat was more than happy to oblige!  She doesn't get too upset about much of anything!

On St Pat's and always...

May the Irish hills caress you.
May her lakes and rivers bless you.
May the luck of the Irish enfold you.
May the blessings of Saint Patrick behold you.
~Irish Blessing

Friday My Town Shoot Out
Camera Critters

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Daffodils and More.....

I love spring in the mountains.  We are situated so that we have  the most northern of the southern plants plus the most southern of the northern plants which makes for double the color in spring.   It seems like every place you look there is a riot of flowers, shrubs and trees in bloom.

With almost an acre of woods and cleared area, my yard has many clumps of spring blooms still coming up and opening.  Right now I have several varieties of daffodils with more to come.

My favorite are the double daffodils and the pastel varieties which have yet to bloom. I also have phlox blossoming in shades of pinks and purple along with the Lenten roses really visible now. Our forsythia is not quite there yet even though I have seen more in bloom in town.  The red bud tree is coming along nicely and will be budding in a week or so.

Our neighbors' goats have been escaping almost daily but today the owners checked the fence thoroughly for holes and found the goats around the bend in another neighbor's pasture.  Hopefully this will keep them contained! What lovely spring flowers are coming up in your yard?

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Scenic Drives, Waterfalls and Heights

On my birthday last week we took a drive to Highlands situated in the Nantalahala National Forest at 4118 feet.  It is a resort town for the Atlanta area with plenty of outdoor activies.  On the way home, we took a scenic drive along the Cullasaja River which runs between Highlands and Franklin on Highway 64 west.  The river offers waterfalls, deep pools for swimming and lots of rapids.

The first falls we got to is Bridal Veil Falls which cascades over old 64 West.  At one time (and we actually did it 15 years ago) you could drive under the falls but in 2003 a large boulder fell from the cliff above and they have roped it off for safety!

See the rainbow?

The next falls we came to was Dry Falls and they were anything but dry!  When we came thru here years ago, my husband stood under the falls and I took his photo.  Today they did not let anyone down to the trail as the water was coming over the falls too heavily.  You would get drenched walking behind them. I had to take my shots from the overlook above. The name comes from usually being able to walk behind them and stay dry!

The walkway is barely visible!

The river just roars through the gorge and at times it was very scary to look down.  The narrow two lane road  is cut into a rock cliff with just a metal guardrail between you and a serious drop of hundreds of feet.

We were looking for the final falls on the road and somehow missed the turnoff.  We turned around once out of the gorge and headed back up.  No wonder we missed the tiny overlook barely big enough for one car!  Don parked the car and stayed with it while I ran over to get a shot of the Cullasaja Falls.  The brochure warned about being very careful here and I can see why but the falls were worth it.!

Now that we have been to Highlands from our present location, we will be going back more often as it is much closer.  Just an hour and a half drive brings us to another world!


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