Saturday, May 16, 2015

The Botanical Gardens at Asheville

We finally had a weekend to get out together as a family and enjoy the late spring weather. Our previous two weekends our plans were thwarted, due to Sierra being sick. Today she seems well on the way to recovery and so we headed over the mountains (luckily without any instances of car-sickness) into North Carolina to explore Asheville a little bit. Our destination would be the Botanical Gardens which we had never before explored.

The Botanical Gardens were very pleasant. We stopped at the gift shop to use the restroom and then headed over to an interesting bird feeder that was suspended by a cable and had small tree branches attached to it that birds could perch on.
looking at bird feeder
We then headed over to the main trail, a half-mile loop that passes some of the most interesting attractions in the gardens. We immediately crossed an interesting wooden arch bridge
bridge over creek
crossing bridge
and then made a right at the trail junction. There were lots of wildflowers in bloom. Some we could identify, like Carolina allspice,
Carolina allspice
Jack in the pulpit,
jack in the ;ulpit
flame azalea,
flame azalea
fire pink,
red flowers
and mountain laurel.
mountain laurel
Sierra even found a tulip poplar flower lying on a rock wall.
Sierra and tulip tree flower
 Other flowers we were not successful in identifying. 
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pink flowers
white flowers

The trail passed under a rustic looking shelter.
walking under shelter
Then, at about the half way point of the hike, we found the Hayes Cabin.
Sierra and Noelle at hayes Cabin
Just past the Hayes Cabin we took a detour into a field
hiking through field
which Sierra enjoyed running in.
Sierra runs through field
We then found ourselves close to a small creek. There was a set of stone stairs that led down to the water. We took advantage of them and looked for small fish in the stream.
standing near water
We also enjoyed the ambiance of the location for a bit before moving on.
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We passed a small rock shelter that Sierra said "looks like a cave". There was some interesting stratification in the rock here.
cool rock
Soon we found ourselves back at the start of our hike. We would continue into downtown Asheville to eat lunch and walk around a bit. Then it started to rain on us and so we headed back to the car for the drive back to Greeneville. 

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