A Wrong Turn Leads to Adventure  

Posted by: Julie

Our day began as planned, a day trip to the WNC Nature Center.

(Petting Zoo at WNC Nature Center)
It is a really neat place and we had lots of fun walking around and looking at the interesting animals.

(WNC Nature Center)
We got to see black bears, white-tail deer (we have these in our yard quite often) Grey wolfs, foxes, bobcats, otters and lots more.

(Up close to a red wolf)

There were LOTS of turns to get to the nature center and I am not known for having the best sense of direction. So when it was time to leave, I sort of got confused *go figure*!

However, it all turned out for good. We ended up following the signs to Chimney Rock and had ourselves a little un-planned adventure!

There was no way I was going to hike up all the stairs to get to the top of Chimney Rock with a grumpy 3 year old so we took the easy way and rode the elevator!

(Waiting for the elevator to take us up to Chimney Rock.
26 stories in 30 seconds...amazing!)

When you get off the elevator you walk out of the gift shop you are way up in the mountains. The next step is to walk up 44 stairs to the top of Chimney Rock. My mom isn't fond of heights so she waited at the bottom of the stairs for us. Daniel went with us to the top, but he wasn't real happy when he got there, so down the steps we went.

(At the top of Chimney Rock)

Next we followed yet more steps up to the Opera Box and enjoyed the view from there.

(The view of Chimney Rock from the opera box)

More stairs? Are you serious? Yep, so up we went to see Devil's Head. I think God's imagination is quite amazing, don't you?

(Devil's Head at Chimney Rock)

Now, we go back down those stairs! This is when things got a little scary. After we walked down the wooden stairs, we still needed to go down the stone stairs. Of course, I'm the slow one, so the kids were ahead of me. I could see them but Andrew went around a bend and I didn't see him for a moment. Jessica turned around to me and said "Andrew fell off the mountian!"

What???? I really didn't believe he fell "off the mountain" and I figured he must have slipped. I then heard him groaning and I picked up the pace to get to him. Sure enough, he took a tumble. I thought he slipped and scraped up his side a bit. What I didn't find out until later is that he actually ROLLED (like a forward head roll) down the stairs and ended up sliding on his back a bit before he stopped!!!!

Thankfully he is fine. He's back is scraped up pretty good and he feels a little banged up, but he's okay. Let me tell you, I've said lots of thank yous to our Heavenly Father for the protection He poured out all over my son!

(All those stairs!)

After we took a break and shopped the gift shop we decided to hike the Hickory Nut Falls Trail. It is a 1.5 mile hike and at the end you come face to face with a 404 foot waterfall! Daniel was just too cranky and tired to make the hike so he and mom waited for us.

(Hickory Nut Falls Trail)

I never thought I'd enjoy hiking (even mild hiking like we did Tuesday) but I DID! It was so nice just walking and talking with the children. They enjoyed it, too. They said that the only thing that would make it better would be having Dad there with us! I agree!

(God's beautiful creations!)

(The reward at the end of the trail!)
We're already making plans to go back and the next time we're taking Dad along!

So, a wrong turn lead to a great day of adventure for us and maybe a whole new world of family fun for the Monroe's!

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Looks like an awesome place to visit! We may have to plan a stop there next time we head to NC to see the grandparents. Thank you for sharing.

Have you been up to Sliding Rock in the Pisgah National Forest. We live minutes from there and its wonderful for kids who can swim. There is also the fish hatchery and the cradle of forestry. You can probably look it all up onnline.

How expensive is Chimney Rock? We are headed that way next weekend and going to the Nature center with our zoo passes so I thought we might could get some other things in. I know we can always go to the Fish Hatchery. My kids don't really like the Cradle of Forestry but we might go tubing on Davidson River. Just wondering about prices.

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