Last week my husband and I took our children up to the beautiful state of Tennessee. We were visiting my sister and brother-in-law on their farm for eight days. There were so many memorable adventures that I have made them into separate posts. You can see our first day on the farm here, our hike up Margarette Falls here, our day at Brights Zoo here, our Dinosaur Adventure here, and fishing at the Pond here.
The last few days of our vacation my Mom, aka Nana Dinosaur to the kids, came up from South Carolina to visit. While she was visiting we decided to go hike Viking Mountain. During my first year of college, many years ago, my Mom, sisters, and step father lived on this mountain. They only stayed up there about 6 months so I never got to visit them there. Mom wanted to go and revisit it. Viking Mountain is part of the Cherokee National Forest and is one of the tallest mountains in East Tennessee.
The drive up the mountain was rough for me. I don't do well on rocky, bouncy roads in a contained vehicle. So after a panic attack, half way up, I had to get out and hike the rest of the way. This was totally fine with me. I love hiking! Jade found snail shells and praying mantis egg sacks on the hike up.
Uncle Joe told us about edibles on the mountain like ants and their white larva, wild carrots, and black berries. I hope I'm never in a position to need to eat ants or their larva.
My Mom told us about using the bark of birch trees for writing paper.
We didn't quite make it to the top. We had about a mile to go, but the view was still lovely. We hung around for a while just drinking it all in. The kids were tired so we headed back down.
The flowers and streams were beautiful and I loved hiking with the family.
But the most awesome part of the hike was on the way down when this lovely butterfly landed on my shoe, mid stride. How could do anything but smile and feel happy about our lovely time here on the mountain, panic attack and all.
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