Sunday, August 22, 2010

Falling Water

Yesterday was all about falling water.  One of the main reasons we come out this way is to see waterfalls.  We were very successful with that on Friday in seeing the three that are very close to where we're staying.  Since the weather looked a little iffy for tubing we chose to venture out to see some of the best waterfalls out this way.

We started with a trip out to Whitewater Falls.  I was rather proud of myself for getting there without having Amanda obsessively check the map.  The problem was that it was raining when we arrived.  We hung out in the car for a while, but we eventually decided to just go out and see the falls.  It alternated between light drizzle and fairly heavy rain.  Amanda took an umbrella and I had a hat.  The falls were completely worth seeing, but we didn't go down to the river or do the short hike to another waterfall because we knew that the trail would be fairly treacherous.

We were going to try to see Rainbow Falls, but that involved a 3-mile round-trip hike.  That would not normally be a big deal, but it didn't sound like much fun in the rain.  We skipped that and went past Bridal Veil Falls (driving behind it, of course) to Dry Falls.

We ended up waiting in the car for quite a while as the skies had completely opened up.  Think Caddyshack when Carl Spackler caddies for the bishop, except we didn't have as much thunder and lightning.  We did have a little bit of it, but nothing too scary.  We ate our picnic lunch in the car and waited some more.  I had enough coverage on my blackberry to see that the storm was in no hurry to pass through, so we just went for it.

I was completely drenched in about 30 seconds.  We got bonus waterfalls as we watched water stream down the steps and out of the side of the hill.  We also got a bonus in that the flow over Dry Falls was quite spectacular.  I was raised on Niagara Falls, so my image of a waterfall is a LOT of water going over the cliff.  Here the waterfalls tend to be more broken up with less water, but very pretty in a different way.  Dry Falls kind of gave us the best of both worlds.  Despite the description you read in the link, we actually were much drier behind the falls because we were shielded from the rain.  We stayed for a few minutes, but left when we were getting cold.  It was strange to be cold on August 21 in North Carolina, but we were.

We finished the evening with a very nice dinner.  Overall, it was a good day, though the weather was not ideal.  Today is not shaping up to be much better, but it should not hinder our drive home.