Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Today (Wednesday, April 11th) was chilly with showers of grainy ice. The heaviest of these even accumulated. Just a little reminder that I'm not in Georgia any more. I traversed three bits of high ground and two flat lowland stretches - sure signs that I'm getting close to the Cumberland Valley.
Of the three highland stretches, two were 'same old' ... and then there was Rocky Ridge. It's an unusually steep climb on either side, and it felt good to be working those muscles again -- first genuine vertical challenge since I flipped north. And on top is a quarter mile of gleeful playing among the boulders.
If ever there was a bit of trail designed just for the sheer fun of it, the Rocky Ridge summit traverse is it -- rock scrambling for its own sake - prepositions sans destinations: in and out and up and over and down and around! I loved it as a kid, and Rocky Ridge brought that kid out again. It doesn't have to have any other purpose for being ... although if you're looking for a 'point' to all this effort, Rocky Ridge does offer a couple of limited winter views. Here's the best of them, looking north to the Cumberland Valley:
I took an hour to go a mile over Rocky Ridge, not because it had to take that long, but because I stopped to marvel. Sometimes this trail is not about long distance hiking. It's about living in the moment. It's about a smile. It's about a flower.
Thank you, Rocky Ridge. And kudos to the trail maintainers at the Mountain Club of Maryland, who obviously had a lot of fun blazing every second rock and every third tree through this delightful maze.
Here's a map with the track of my hike today. The long straight line segment is a glitch that is there because I parked in and hiked from two different locations - the line connects the two parking locations, and I don't know how to delete it. Sorry. Click on the title to look at the whole selection of photos taken today. I usually photograph every road crossing, interesting stream crossings, and anything else that helps document the trail or just strikes my fancy.
AT Day 91 - Rocky Ridge at EveryTrail
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