Hiking The Rich Mountain Trail!
by Rachelle Siegrist
Sometimes life just gets too stressful and noisy, and with the over zealous power company tree “trimmers” in our neighborhood this past week, it has been way too noisy and stressful! It’s at times like that in which I need to spend a few hours in the woods. So this past Tuesday, Wes and I headed to the nearby Smokies to hike the Rich Mountain Trail.
As we started out my shoulders felt heavy and weighed down, but as soon as my feet met the soft dirt path, I felt the cares and worries slipping away with each and every step, and soon a spring had returned to my step! The longer I hiked, the more carefree I felt! After walking some distance we found the perfect spot for lunch, in the sun no less, making it even better!
With most of the trees barren, we enjoyed a lovely view as we sat there savoring the welcomed peace and quiet. The only sounds were that of the wind blowing through the trees, and the occasional birdsong or “Rap…tap…tap” of a woodpecker pounding on a tree nearby . . . and it was priceless indeed!!! Both the delightful sounds of birds and of the wind blowing through the pines continued to serenade us as we hiked along, gently tossing my hair each time it passed. Piles of green moss lined the path, thick and lush from recent rains and snow, and it beckoned to be gently patted, a plea I simply could not resist!
With blue skies above, sunlight streamed through the barren forest forming shadows like lines painted across the forest floor, and warming us up nicely as we went along!
Several interesting fungi formations grabbed our attention, with a couple of them appearing most interesting.
Several dead tree snags were scattered throughout the woods, some providing great homes for woodpeckers and such. This tree in particular must have been most appealing, as it looked like they were building a set of condos in it, with one of them being quite spacious!
Soon we reached the sign marking the junction of several trails and the end of the section we were hiking. So we started making our way back, happy that what was a constant uphill climb was now going to be all downhill from there! We went along savoring the silence and feeling most blessed to have had the trail completely all to our own!
~ Currently On the Easel ~
I finished my painting of a beautiful Chocolate Lab for the upcoming SEWE show in Charleston, SC, and am putting the finishing touches on a late afternoon pastoral scene with a cow, for another upcoming show.
Wes finished his painting of a Mourning Dove in one of their favorite spots in our yard, a bed of pine straw underneath the blueberry bushes.
He also finished a painting of three beautiful wolves we enjoyed watching interact with one another! All three paintings will debut at the upcoming Southeastern Wildlife Exposition, held in Charleston, SC. Dates for the show are February 12th-14th. We look forward to seeing you there!
If any collectors are planning to attend the upcoming NatureWorks Wildlife Art Show and Sale in Tulsa, OK, next month and would like an invitation, we have a few available. So please get in touch, and we’ll mail you one.
Until next time . . .