Sunday, June 26, 2011

Hiking Chimney Rock State Park

It's been a GREAT weekend!
Brad and I were very productive on Saturday and ended our day with dinner and drinks with new friends.
Then today I got an early start and hiked Chimney Rock State Park with a co-worker.
I had been here once before but during the winter.
It's much different in the summer.
More trails are open and there are a TON more people in the park.

A view of the top of Chimney.  Gorgeous or what? That's Lake Lure down there -- one of the areas the movie Dirty Dancing was filmed.
When we arrived we saw people rappelling on the rocks.  Something I have no desire to do.
At the entrance there was this guy playing music.  I later read in the brochure that he's the official park musician.  He's there every day playing.  Interesting, huh? State Parks have musicians?
The park is made up of lots and lots of stairs in order to get to the top.  They have an elevator too but they're making some improvements so it's shut down until this next Spring.
We ducked into this cave on our way up.
I'll never forget when Brad and I visited the park.  He freaked out inside of the cave. He's claustraphobic.
There's not much down there to see but it was cool which was nice since it was a bit hot today.
This picture is a little overexposed but you can see how gorgeous the views are on the way to the top. we are at the top of the Chimney.
But.. our hike wasn't over.  See those stairs in the distance. We ventured up those and onto the Skyline Trail portion of the park which takes you to the highest point in the park.  Yes, we got a workout when it was all said and done!
When we arrived there was a park ranger up there guiding people around a big copperhead snake.  YIKES!
Gorgeous views!
We hiked all the way back down and decided to hike out to Hickory Nut Falls. 
When Brad and I were here in the winter the falls were frozen.  Much different this time.
Very pretty!
Afterwards we headed out of the park and into the town of Lake Lure where we enjoyed some lunch, shopped and then headed back to Charlotte.
I suggest Chimney Rock State Park to anyone looking for a fun day trip from Charlotte.  It's only a 2-hour drive and a lovely way to get out of the city and into the mountain air.
Sunday Funday!
How was your weekend?


The Jones Family said...

I'll most likely never get out to do such stuff but but your pictures are beautiful and you sure make it look easy! Thanks for doing all the work :)

starnes family said...

Absolutely gorgeous! Love your sense of adventure and that first picture is fabulous!

Dirty Dancing? One of my all time favorites.

Jo said...

The view is amazing ~ your photos are great.

This is something my son would really enjoy. I'll have to suggest it when I'm visiting him this summer.

Have a great week ~

April of Smidge Of This said...

You know, I've never been to Chimney Rock! I'd like to go sometime. It would be a nice break from the hot summer days we've been having in Charlotte.

I Do Declare said...

What a hike! Pretty pictures! I love Lake Lure! Of course I went back in the day b/c I was obsessed w/ Dirty Dancing!

The Lenzers said...

gorgeous!!!! Makes me hate living in the middle of the country, all though I am sure there are beautiful natural places near here, my hubs is not into that!

Nikki said...

Beautiful views! I'd love to hike it someday. I've always wanted to visit the area dirty dancing was filmed. Classic summer movie.

The Official Chimney Rock'er said...

Yes, great photos Dee! We're glad you enjoyed the Park and we love to hear about people's experiences here. We look forward to seeing you again!
-Chimney Rock State Park staff

Mary said...

Beautiful views! What a fun adventure, copperhead snakes aside. I bet the cave felt great but I'm a tad claustrophobic myself :-)

Just Add Walter said...

I had no idea that is where part of Dirty Dancing was filmed... you learn something new everyday!