Chimney Rock

Chimney Rock

Chimney Rock

After a long break for Christmas, I’m finally posting the last of my vacation photos. These are all from Chimney Rock near Asheville. Crazy people can actually hike up the series of stairways (about 500 steps) from the parking lot to Chimney Rock, but I am not crazy so we took the elevator. The actual rock is smaller than I thought it would be and not very flat so it’s difficult walk around on. But since it was almost winter, it wasn’t busy so I really got to walk all around and get pictures from all sides which was nice.

Once you get up to the rock there are even more stairways that lead to other views and the highest peak of Chimney Rock park called Exclamation Point (ha). I wasn’t really planning to bother with that because I hate hiking up stairs and inclines, but the hiking trail to the waterfall I wanted to see was closed so it was either go up or go home after only 15 minutes. So we went up and up and up some more, at least 10 different sets of stairs and I almost died. I guess it wasn’t that bad. Once in high school I had to hike 8 miles up a mountain and it was probably the worst thing I’ve ever had to do (and I love to hike and was in waaayyy better shape back then so that’s saying something). This was only a mile or two so it was doable. Still, I was proud of myself!

After hanging out at exclamation point until I wasn’t going to die anymore we headed back down all those stairs. Then I went crazy and decided it would be fun to go down the 500 stairs from Chimney Rock back to the parking lot instead of taking the elevator. Because going down stairs is so much easier, right? Unfortunately, the muscles in the back of my legs did not agree with that after about 100 steps but thankfully there were places to rest along the way. Hopefully, one day we can go back so I can finally see that waterfall. I’d love to see the view in the spring or summer when all the trees are green.

So, despite a rocky (har har) start to our vacation it turned out to be pretty awesome. Asheville was a nice little town that I felt very at home in. Besides Biltmore and Chimney Rock we ate at some really excellent restaurants. I had pork belly for the first time and now I understand why people on Top Chef always go crazy for it! Ideally, I’d love to come back next year and do it all over again!

Click to view full size photos.

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