This weekend I spent some time in the mountains. I love the mountains. Being from the coastal-ish region of South Carolina, I don’t get to see mountains very often. The highest elevation I usually get to see is around 500 feet above sea level, and that’s on the interstate going to Columbia. But two years ago my father (who lives in Florida) decided it would be good to get everyone together in the mountains so we could do the winter holiday in one place. The result was less than ideal. Great place to be, good food, enjoyable times, and a foot of snow.
We weren’t prepared for a foot of snow. So unprepared for a foot of snow we wound up being helped down the mountain driveway by a Bobcat and a tow strap. Helped to not slide off the cliff, mind you.
So this year, when it was suggested we go to a different section of the mountains, it was with a little trepidation that we agreed. Thankfully, the weather looked cooperative. Last winter was so exceptionally mild, it didn’t seem like winter at all. Hoping this would at least be the case through Christmas, we made the drive to Brevard, NC.
What we found this time was slightly disturbing. Great location, but it was up a winding twisted drive that would make even a rough tough mountain man a little skeered, if there was to be snow and ice. What was a little MORE concerning was the forecast. That night it was supposed to be around 20 degrees, with maybe some snow. Oh – and it had been raining all day.
Thankfully, we had two days ahead of us, and the temperature on Saturday was supposed to be 54 degrees, so any ice and snow may have had the chance to melt.
It turns out we didn’t need it, as despite the all day rain, the roads were pretty much dry the next morning. And the snow they promised us? While it DID snow, it never really stuck. So we woke to this:
That was our snow. It blew around all day, and was pretty in the air, but it behaved itself and never did concern us.
The bad thing was, I had promised my daughter a trip to the top of Pisgah mountain, or even to Dupont Forest where they filmed “The Hunger Games”. Unfortunately Friday was very cold and windy even where we were. The top of Mount Pisgah was supposed to have a high of 19 degrees, with 70mph wind gusts and a wind chill of -6. No thanks! I’ll stick to the lower elevations. I don’t think I have ever felt six degrees below zero in my life. The coldest night I remember in the last ten years was around 17, and that was overnight with me inside the house at 70 degrees.
I don’t give free ads to anyone, but I WILL say this was on Eagle Lake Drive in Brevard, NC. It is a nice little place, if you want an out-of-the-way place to spend a few days.
My original plan was to bring my hiking stuff and test out my sleeping system in 20 degree weather. My wife had other ideas, however, and I wound up inside. It was just as well, with the rain and the fact I have been sick and coughing up green slime for a few weeks, being out in the cold would probably not have been in my best interest.
I did get to hunt for a geocache in the mountains, and got to see a waterfall along highway 276, and even got to go into a couple of hiking stores (yay!). We returned to looking Glass falls one afternoon, while the snow was blowing. That was nice to do, as in the summer and fall the place is packed, but in freezing weather we had the falls to ourselves.