Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Running With a Friend on the Appalachian Trail

Earlier this summer my good running buddy, Jody, and I ran the 15 mile stretch of the Appalachian Trail in southern PA from Caledonia Park south to the Rt 16 road crossing at Blue Ridge Summit.

Jody is an excellent photographer and took a number of shots using a high-end pocket camera (sorry, I don't have the make & model handy).  These two photos (of me!) struck me so I'll share them here:

A ghostly chestnut oak tree on the ridge top

On top of Chimney Rocks

The first scene: this site always kinda gives me the willies whenever I run under that particular tree.  This area was logged probably 100 years ago, I'm guessing, but this tree was spared and is now way larger than any other tree along that ridge.  The way the lateral limb hangs across the trail (did you note the white Appalachian Trail blaze, which being out on a horizontal limb has to be an AT rarity?).

For some reason this tree seems eerie, almost, but not quite sinister, and putting it behind me always is a relief, especially if I am running there alone.

Then the lovely vista from Chimney Rocks practically knocks your socks off.  It's well worth the trip.  Heading south you then have a screaming downhill of about a mile and a half that passes the twin Tumbling Run shelters, a mountain brook, and a wonderful spring.

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