We packed a lot into the day we visited Grandfather Mountain in North Carolina. If you missed the morning on the swinging bridge you can read about it in Part I.
After we were done with the bridge, we made it to the lower level parking lot and started packing for our hike. We knew that we would be out for several hours, so we packed food, water, and all of Caleigh's meds and formula.
When we approached the trail head we took the Black Rock path. This trail goes out to a scenic view with a loop, and then you return to the parking lot the same way you entered.
Caleigh fell asleep fairly fast since it was her nap time and she was basically in a bouncy, quiet, nature filled environment. Nothing but wind, birds and rustling leaves can be super soothing. I wanted to nap a tiny bit with her!
When we made it to the actual Black Rock we took a small break to explore the stream and climb up under the cool boulder.
About an hour into our hike, we made it to the first scenic outlook at Arch Rock. We had to use cables to scale the rocks up to the view. I went first and then watched anxiously as Eric pulled Caleigh and himself up.
This was a small rock and overlook and we didn't stay too long. Once we got down we headed towards the loop where there was a nice open area that we stopped at. It was almost eighty degrees that day so the coolness of the rocks was very welcomed. We ate our snacks, took Caleigh out of the Osprey Pack and rested for awhile. We chatted with the few passersby and then started packing back up.
When we were all packed up we headed up to another overlook. This one had a great view of Grandfather Mountain and the summit of a much more difficult trail. Actually I'm pretty sure it was called the Grandfather Mountain overlook. To get to this we had to climb ladders and many more cables up steep rocks.
I held my breath while Eric and Caleigh went up. By the way, Caleigh said her favorite part of hiking with her Daddy is going up. Go figure!
The view was wonderful and it was the highest we had been so far in our trip. We stayed for quite sometime taking it all in.
Once on top, I traded camera duties with another family that was already up there. So I give you our one and only family photo from our entire trip........
Our way back to the parking lot seemed like it took less time. Maybe we were more complacent to our surroundings? I don't know. Overall, we were out on our hike for about two and a half hours.
At the end of the day we had enjoyed everything that we wanted to at Grandfather Mountain. I'm sure this visit won't be our last to the mountain and it's trails.