Friday, November 08, 2013


A few years ago (2008) I loaded up my backpack and headed to Linville Gorge to go into the wilderness alone. It was in the winter and, as I recall, the middle of the week. I had a couple of days off so I figured I'd have the place to myself. For part of the time the weather was really chilly and everything was coated in ice. Because of that, I did seem to have the entire Gorge to myself.

I took the Pinch-In Trail down to the bottom of the Gorge and then took the main trail along the river until I found a campsite that I liked. Because it was so lonely down there, I ended up building a nice campfire, which is something I almost never do in a wilderness area. But the fire kept me company and created a sense of security for me. There was already a well-established fire ring, so I didn't feel as guilty about making a fire.

The thing that gets me when I look back at the photos I took on that trip is that I don't seem to have taken any photos of my campsite! Very strange, really, considering that I had a pretty cool spot. Oh, well.

My truck was the only vehicle at the trailhead.

I really did need that scarf when I started the hike. The glaze of ice was just then melting from the ground and rocks.

Yes, that's the trail. It pretty much just goes straight down. The Gorge was then still beginning to recover from the second of the two horrible forest fires that had ravaged the area during the long droughts of the early 2000s.

At the bottom of the Gorge looking up at the rim.

Finding firewood was really easy along the river. Tons of dry wood washed up on the rocks.

The following morning I hiked up into the clouds.

It wasn't raining, but everything was drenched in dew.

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