Sunday, August 29, 2010

Peavine Falls

Hello! My name is Carrie, and I'll be your tour guide for this outing. Today, we are going to hike down to Peavine Falls. It's a moderate hike, and while it's a bit warm and humid out, I think you'll enjoy it. So c'mon and follow me!

Isn't that a lovely little starter tree?

And what gorgeous dwarf irises!

And the falls themselves.

And I'll let you find your own way back, OK? Just follow the trail...
The Peavine? Oh, I'm not sure what a peavine is, to tell the truth! But it was a nice trail anyways, wasn't it?

On to Oak Mountain

I was able to get us reservations at Oak Mtn once the weekend was over, so we moved over there for a couple nights. First thing? Time to take the kids for a swim!

The dogs really enjoyed themselves.

Can't say the same for the cats... Yeah, we took them in too. That's pretty much The Stink Eye that Tractor's giving me here.

Scratty was none too pleased either. Although Tractor seems to still hold it against us, and steers clear of water now, whereas Scratty seems surprisingly comfortable being around it (not that she wants to go swimming again, mind you).

What did I tell you about the brothers thing?!! These two really like each other. It goes beyond comfort to just plain, well, liking each other! And they're actually pretty alike in ways, in addition to their post-swim grooming techniques.

Pretty road through the park.
Pretty picnic area, wouldn't you say?!

Scratty has forgiven me and finds security hanging over my arm, all the while hanging out the window at 40 mph!

Mt. Cheaha - Bama's highest point

While Billy rode over to the Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum ( to check out their incredible collection of motorcycles, etc., Ouray and I drove up Mt. Cheaha (easy for you to say!), Alabama's highest point at around 2,400 ft.
A pretty driveway along the way.

I love when trees make this patchwork look. You can see it's spring - thus all the differing color shades. Spring...hmm... OK, well, moving right along...!!

The view from above. Pretty peaceful, eh?

Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park

Some fellow campers told us about a few places to go. This was one of them. It tells of Alabama's place in the past with regards to the steel and iron industry. You can see more about it here:
It was a neat place, and Bill was in his element for sure!!

You can just imagine how an engineer could go ga-ga in a place like this! Or a history buff.

And on the natural history side...a very cool moth!! And best yet, a living, uncaged specimen!

One of the many gorgeous trees blooming in the area!

A typical cabin type for the area and period. They used these as rentals!

Just another lovely river running through it... And a very peaceful, wholesome scene with families fishing together along its banks. It was very refreshing to know that families still do these kinds of things together in places.

The blast furnaces.

BAMA or bust!

First stop: Birmingham. Saturday, August 10th. See? We're making progress!
I had wanted us to stay at the Oak Mountain State Park, but it was the weekend, and they were apparently already booked, so we settled for the privately owned Birmingham South RV Park. They had gotten good reviews and were practically the only other game in town. But they also had a secret. A dirty BIG secret!! Behind the campground, hidden by trees, is a train track... Only a short distance away, this track got run over by trains all night, and the conductors particularly enjoyed laying on the horn the entire way through the city!!! I got all of one hour of sleep that night and was fearful that this stop would be nothing short of hell for moi!!! I woke up disturbed and fuming!!! But thank goodness, I found some good earplugs and was so exhausted, I actually slept through the trains the next night! Phew!! And lucky for the campground owners, I held off on doing my review till after our stay (has become my policy), so they ended up with a more positive rating overall, but I certainly warned folks of the train issue!!!!!!
The other exciting thing that started off this stay was Tractor puking all over our bed! He managed to hit the dog throw on top, the comforter, the carpet, and the cabinetry. The guy really gets around... So I was quite busy with laundry that evening... And yes, he was fine. He just manages to get car sick sometimes, even in the motor home. Needless to say, the catfood dish always gets picked up early now on moving days!!!!
He ain't heavy...he's my brother.
Do these two look stressed to you? Do you think cats and dogs can get along OK?
Tractor and Ouray know how to ride in style!!!! They are often on the couch together on our moving days.
A super cool fountain sculpture in downtown Birmingham. We just loved it!! The photos don't do it justice of course, but the artist really captured all the cute critters and set the scene! The creator was Frank Fleming, and the theme was storytelling...

Bill "caught" in the crossfire. :)

Another attempt to show the fountain.

A hilltop look at the heart of the city.

Friday, August 27, 2010

One Mississippi, Two Mississippi - OK, that's it!

One more outing while in MS combined the capitol building in Jackson and a jaunt down part of the Natchez-Trace Parkway (for the second time - we also did that on our 3-week sojourn).
An impressive facade.

And beautiful interior.

I feel dumb, but Bill had to explain this decor to me. Blind Justice. OK, so did you guys get it?

Dragonfly type on the cypress-tupelo swamp stop on the N-T.

No gators this time (we saw 3 or 4 the other time - maybe too early and still too cold for them to be out and about??), but still a gorgeous little swamp!!

Miscellaneous Mississippi

On April 7th, we moved to Roosevelt State Park, in Morton, MS. Enroute, we ran into a bit of a traffic jam. The reason was made clear soon enough though... Poor trucker! We heard that he had been unable to avoid a mattress in the roadway, it had gotten trapped underneath and caught on fire. Not his lucky day, but at least he was OK.

Our campsite was directly across from a lakeside beach. Here, Tractor shows off a bit of his skill set... Impressed yet?

Another tool in his box - sound snoozing!!! There are many of us who wish we could do it this well!!

Wisteria grows unchecked, and quite happily, in many areas of the south!

Yeah, that's me harrassing the local wildlife again...

I rushed out of the camper for this one. The fog was burning off the lake quickly! (quicker than my eyes wanted to open at that time in the morning!!)

Afton Gardens Revisited

In past the little sentry building...
And down the gorgeous driveway, azaleas all abloom...
When Bill and I did our marathon 3-week drive out to SC and back, this was one of our stops. We stayed in beautiful St. Francisville and had our first glimpse at Afton Villa Gardens. The mansion may have burned down eons ago, but the gardens reflect current TLC!

And the ugly (ha-ha!) little place next door too...