Wednesday, October 01, 2014

More Waterfalls, and Tornado Damage


Blairsville, Georgia (high 81, low 58)


Happy Fall Y’all

Fall is my favorite time of the year here in the north Georgia mountains.   People around here really get into decorating for fall, me included.

Here is a picture of our fall decor. 


It’s hard to believe that we’ve been here almost three months and that our time is winding down.   We have a lot of exploring to do before the end of the month.

On Monday, we went into town  and had lunch with Merikay and Craig.  We did a little exploring and then home for happy hour out on the deck.  One of these days, I will remember to get their picture.

Yesterday, we decided to do some hiking.  It took us a while to make up our mind where to go, but finally we decided on Desoto Falls.  We headed south on Blood Mountain aka hwy 129. 

De Soto Falls

There was a nice parking lot, with a very clean and well maintained restroom.   We found out why , later on.  I’ll get back to that story later.

We jumped out of the car, grabbed my camera, phone, Al’s backpack, and went over to read the sign showing  a map of the area.

Fortunately, Al , noticed a sign saying you could get in free with the Golden Age/geezer card.   It’s a good thing he saw that, because we hadn’t even thought about paying the normal  $3.00 parking fee.   We discussed whether or not anyone ever checked some of these remote parking to see if everybody paid.  I didn’t think so.

Then, Al started to laugh and ask me if I had forgotten anything?   I looked down and realized I still had on my sandals!  Duh.

After changing shoes, off we went to find the trail head and passed a nice remote campground.

wooded campsites

a stream….of course


and finally to the trailhead.

Legend has it that a piece of armor was found near the falls that may have been from explorer Hernando Desoto.


You can go to the upper trail which is .75 mile or the lower which is .50 mile.  We decided to go to the upper trail first.

This next picture is a mushroom that almost looked like a small furry animal. 

furry mushroom

It was an easy walk, with only short areas where you had to climb, and fortunately not too many acorns in your path.

The waterfall was a little sparse, and not one of the prettiest we’ve been to, but that’s  okay.  You can’t win them all.

Upper waterfall

Don’t you just love the people that feel the need to leave their name all over public grounds?

Thanks Greg Weaver from Wasilla, Alaska.  Glad to know you were there!


also glad to know Ashley Owen loves Wendi Strickland



We walked back down, and then did the lower falls.   That was a shorter hike, but more strenuous. 

The forest was pretty.



I’m always fascinated by the knobs in the trees.  This looks like a face of a bulldog to me.  See the crooked tooth?

tree knob

see the resemblance?


When we got back to the parking lot, we noticed this fellow giving out a ticket to someone who has forgotten to pay their $3.  He took down all sorts of info, including the vin.

ranger giving ticket at Desoto Falls

Phew….it’s a good thing we remembered to put our geezer pass, or this could have been us!   The ranger told us the ticket will cost these people $50!   Wowzer!   We wondered which of the people we met on the trail was getting this little surprised.  NOW, we see how they can have such a nice bathroom and parking area. 


After, we left Desoto Falls, we decided to head down the road to Little Ridge Creek Falls.  It’s in the Boggs Creek Wilderness area right off Hwy 129  (note to self…don’t bother going back)


We had our little trail guide which told us how to get to the trailhead.  Unfortunately, the directions in the book didn’t match what we saw in the park.

searching for Little Ridge Creek Falls

We came to a fork in the road.  One direction required you to drive over the stream, and the other had a blocked gate.  There was a forest service guy parked on the other side of the gate, so we asked him if he knew where the trail was located.  He didn’t but mentioned a tornado did a lot of damage there last year and things had changed.

He said we were welcome to walk down the gated road, but we couldn’t bring the truck.

We parked and walked a ways up the gravel road.  There was supposed to be 4 waterfalls.

searching for Little Ridge Creek Falls

We walked a ways and came across some pretty flowers and butterflies.




and lots of damage from the tornado.

tornado damage



It wasn’t the most interesting hike we’ve ever been on.


We finally reached what we think was the actual trail head, that we were supposed to have been able to drive to.  By this time, we had lost our enthusiasm for this hike,  so we headed back.

How about this tree knob?   Can you see the nose, eye and snaggle tooth on this face?


We ended up with about a 4 mile hike by this point, so we decided to call it a day.


searching for Little Ridge Creek Falls


Although it wasn’t the best day for waterfalls or hikes, we had a nice day, and I’m sure we’ll find something else to do today. 


  1. Summer just slipped into fall without a word. Here in CA, fall doesn't show itself very well. Weather pretty much all looks the same!

  2. What a wonderful little hike and that waterfall was so cute!

  3. We too have enjoyed the hikes in this area. Great to have you out there one step ahead!

  4. When you're seeing the Monarchs watch for a small circular dot on their lower wing... even if they're deceased. Our oldest son was just involved in catching, tagging and releasing some of them as they're migrating through here. Kansas State is doing a research study on their migratory habits and how to root finding one is on the little dot!

  5. I definitely see the bull dog. Very cool! I'm surprised that any waterfalls in the mountains of the southern Appalachians have water this late in the year. Score for you guys remembering to put your pass in the car and avoiding the ticket.

  6. Yep, we've been running into people here at the COE that didn't pay the entry fee. Wish we had the authority to write some tickets. Always somebody trying to get something for nothing.

  7. It usually does not pay to try and beat the system, we either pay the fee or we don't go.


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