This past weekend was another stunner in terms of the weather here in Virginia. You know the type - sunny with a high of 75 and please-get-me-out-of-the-house-and-somewhere-beautiful-and-inspiring! So with not enough time for an overnight excursion but overcome with a raging case of wanderlust, hubby and I decided to drive west past Charlottesville and enjoy a day on the Moorman River up in the Blue Ridge on the southern tip of the Shenandoah National Park.
|The second crossing...and a very reluctant puppy!|
|One of the many swimming holes along the way.|
The river is perfect for a day of relaxation. Plenty of large rocks dot the banks, and some create mini islands in the river. As it's within a 20 minute drive from Charlottesville, the place is popular with students and families alike, so don't expect to have the place to yourself. We saw many sunbathers, picnickers, and fishermen (although the trout population is still in recovery mode from the 1995 incident so I can't attest to whether it's a good place to fish).
|Taking a breather. No, sadly, that's not a beer.|
We also saw quite a few, erm, horse apples, if you know what I mean. Hubby wanted to take a picture, but I wouldn't let him. Still, I don't really know why a horse would be on the trail unless a ranger brought it up.
After walking up the trail, we picnicked at the Big Branch falls, the biggest of the two falls. Of course, "big" is a relative term as it's only about a 25-30 feet drop and not very wide. However, it was beautiful, and the swimming hole tempted us to take a dip. Once in, I was soon back out! It felt like there should've been ice cubes floating around!
|Snake #1 - King Snake only 6" long (so is it just a prince snake? har har...)|
|Snake #2 - Garter Snake that Dixie stepped on.|
|Snake #3 - either a copperhead or cottonmouth, but we weren't going to |
get close enough to tell!
|First glimpse of the waterfall|
|The river just disappears over the edge.|
|Panorama of the river.|
We spent the better part of the day there before walking back to drive home. As we were driving past the Charlottesville Reservoir (the Moorman River is dammed to provide water for the city), I looked over to the right and caught a glimpse of this baby bear! He hammed it up for the camera as we snapped a few pictures. It was the perfect ending to a perfect day.
Have you been to the Moorman River before?
|Linking up with Esther & Jacob for the Local Adventurer link-up!|