My Heart is Happier :)

I find my heart is just plain happier when I’m in the mountains of North Carolina.  There’s a legend that something special is buried deep below the mountains, causing visitors a feeling that can’t really be described, but can most definitely be felt.  I think it’s a feeling of a content heart.  That combined with the framily is bound to make one of the best Easters ever.  A slideshow to come shortly, but in the meantime a random assortment of ratings from the long weekend in Blowing Rock, NC.

THE PUPS: 8

I must say, I LOVE taking Dakota to the mountains.  He’s so good, that when I don’t have to worry about other dogs around I pretty much leave him off leash the entire time.  And he LOVES it.  Sticks right by me, but clearly loves the comparative freedom.  Plus, he’s up for anything, despite being a bit older.

Murph has also turned out to be quite the mountain dog.  While I still have to keep him on leash almost all the time (his nose is known to lead him far away at quick rates), his endurance is INSANE.  We took him on a six hour hike on Sunday to the highest peak on Grandfather mountain, and he was still pulling on the leash at the bottom.  Pretty impressive 🙂

All in all the three pups got along fabulously, minus a little humping, a little whining and some minor growling… overall a huge improvement 🙂

SATAN’S BALLS: 9

In the downtime between climbs/hikes, we hung out at our super chill cabin and enjoyed some delicious food.  My favorite had to be Laura’s homemade Satans Balls.  Made out of cake mix and icing, dipped in melted chocolate and then add sprinkles, they were HEAVEN.  Except for the fact that they were small and there were a lot.  Pretty sure I made myself sick off them on Saturday night.  Although that didn’t stop me from eating more for breakfast on Sunday morning…

CALLOWAY PEAK: 9.5

On Sunday Scott, Laura, Mazzi, Paul and I headed out to tackle Grandfather Mountain. After a couple side stops along the way, we finally found the entrance we wanted.  We hiked as a group for awhile, and about 2.5 miles in Laura, Paul and Mazzi headed back while Scott and I went on a search for the summit.

While it ultimately took about 3 1/2 hours to get to the peak, it was TOTALLY worth it.  The highest point on Grandfather Mountain, it provided a 360 view like none I’ve seen in a LONG time.  It was incredible.

-.5 for the snow/ice we encountered at the last steep pitch.  It resulted in several almost-falls, soaking wet/freezing feet (I was wearing my five-fingers) and a soaked/freezing butt (after deciding this was the safest way to descend).  However, we made it safely!

SUNRISE OVER PRICE LAKE: 10

This morning we decided to get up super early and hike to a lake about 2 miles away to check out the sunrise.  While we got a bit lost on the way there, luckily some nice folks on the Blue Ridge Parkway picked us up and brought us there.

Totally worth the early rise, both for the company and for the view.  Don’t get to see this very often…

THE COMPANY’S CLIMBING: 10!

We left Holloway Mountain with a lot to be proud of… Ben’s first time leading trad, Laura and Katie’s first outdoor ascent’s, Scott’s first climb outdoors with us, Liz’s first lead climb in the morning, and Jay, Paul, Mazzi and I looking better than ever.  Not much to complain about here 🙂

All in all another fabulous framily vacation.  Stay tuned for the movie- hopefully with audio this time!!!

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