Hiking in January

Howdy Ho! How’s your weekend going? If you’re in the south you’ve probably been enjoying our *almost* 70 degree weather here, like we did.

We got up this morning and packed a backpack to go hiking at Hanging Rock State Park! It’s only an hour away, so we took advantage of the weather and got to explore an area we’ve been meaning to visit for a while now.

It was pretty obvious when we started getting closer to the park, winding roads and our ears needed to pop. It was a pretty drive though and couldn’t wait to get on the mountain!

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Since we’d never been to this state park before, we stopped at the visitor’s center for a map. Someone was ready to go!

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But we made him wait in the car while we planned our route.

Then it was time to start hiking!

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We followed the Moore’s Wall Loop.

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It was so fun! We stopped and let Owen drink and play in the streams along the way and we posed for some pictures ourselves.

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We kept meandering along until we spotted a monkey..

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Apparently they’re not all that common in North Carolina. Who knew?

After more hiking and picture taking, we were almost to the top!

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Owen enjoyed being off the leash and able to run ahead of us until we caught up. Just making sure the path was clear!  Pack leader for sure.

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He even found a stick as wide as the trail, which he ended up clearing us both out of the way in order to get by with it!

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After about 1.5 hours, we made it to the top!

What a sight it was…

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We stopped and had some trail mix that I made this morning before running out the door and Owen had some doggie treats and water while we took in the view.

So peaceful and amazing that a view like this is only an hour away from everyday life!

Can you believe that while we were up there, we met a guy that is from the same town we grew up in from Indiana?! Small world.

There was a nice couple also enjoying the view that offered to take a picture for us. Too bad my devil horns are showing. Can you find Owen?

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Then, of course, I had to proclaim my love for North Carolina.

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I love you THIIIIIIIS MUCH! (and then some)

Finally, we made our way back down the mountain, still with plenty of beautiful nature scenes to take in.

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Balancing Rocks

Another stream for Owen to play in.

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We weren’t far from the bottom after that, but man was that descent tough! My quads are going to be screamin’ tomorrow!

Once we made it back to the car and started the drive home, we had a pretty tired pup on our hands.

Awkward sleeping position..

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Just checking to see if we’re there by chance?

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In that case, I’m out.

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The whole hike took about 2.5 hours, not including our time at the top of the mountain where we rested and ate. Brandon brought along his Garmin watch to track our hike. Here’s what it looked like..

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It felt good to be working hard again. We definitely worked up a sweat going up that mountain! Can’t wait to get back in the gym tomorrow and this week; doctor said I can still do elliptical and other exercise as long as nothing hurts.

Now it’s time for a night of relaxation with wine, a movie, and my boys!

Owen’s asleep on his bone as we speak..

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How did you enjoy this beautiful Saturday?

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