Painting, Kayaking and Hiking in the Fall!

Painting, Kayaking and Hiking in the Fall!

By Rachelle Siegrist

Kayaking Little River in fall 2015

We decided to take a break from the studio one afternoon this past week, and took the kayaks out for a paddle in nearby Little River.  Blue skies, lots of sunshine and crystal clear water simply can’t be beat, and so it was a most enjoyable afternoon indeed!  We had the river to ourselves, except for a small flock of Mallard Ducks, a friendly pair of Canada Geese, and lots of fish!

canada geese while Kayaking Little River in fall
Wes with the two friendly Canada Geese

We paddled up stream for about an hour and a half, which proved to be much easier than we ever imagined it would be in the kayaks.  Although mostly smooth sailing, we had to get out a couple of times and wade while pushing our kayaks upstream, and at one point carry them around a whitewater section we couldn’t navigate.  However, on the way back down, that section was awesome and a highlight of the trip for me!

rachelle siegrist Kayaking Little River in fall
A nice place to relax

We stopped for a short apple break at a small island, while also enjoying the lovely surroundings.  When we had paddled upstream as far as possible, we were delighted to spot two otters, playing and swimming about, jumping on rocks and just having a grand old time!  Obviously that was the best part of the trip!  We seem to almost always find treasures when we’re out and about and this trip was no exception, as Wes found a nice wooden quilt rack resting on a pile of sticks and logs in the river on the way back.  So we loaded it onto the front of his kayak and down a lazy river we went!

wes siegrist Kayaking Little River in fall
Wes with our prize for the day loaded onto his kayak

Since we’re making great progress on our current portrait commissions, we decided to take another short break to hike to nearby Spruce Flats Falls, with friend Kit, to see it in fall splendor.  We weren’t disappointed in the least, as it was spectacular!  Blessed with another beautiful clear fall day, the sunlight bounced off of the bright colored foliage, creating a feast for the eyes filled with reds and yellows!

rachelle siegrist by spruce flats falls in fall
Standing by the falls

With very little rainfall this summer, the falls were the smallest we had ever seen them!  The neat part was however, that it made it much easier to climb up onto the rock cliff wall of the falls, which is something I’ve wanted to do for quite sometime!  The photo Wes took shows just how big Spruce Flats is, and I was truly amazed when I saw the photo of it later that evening!

spruce flats falls in fall
Oh . . . it’s so beautiful!

Our trio hung out at the base of the falls for while, as I waded in the pool of water below, figuring it would probably be my last chance of the season, before the water gets even more frigid! With spirits refreshed, we hiked back and headed to the house for supper on the porch that evening.

rachelle siegrist at the base of spruce flats falls
Relaxing at the base of the falls (neat photo trick, when you don’t have a thin cloth to cover and thus soften the flash, use a leaf.  Wes used a yellow one and it cast a nice soft warm light in the photo)

~ A few more photos of the gorgeous Fall foliage along the trail ~

fall follage in the smoky mountains

fall leaves in the smokies

views by spruce flats falls in fall


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Until next time . . .

Rachelle

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