Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Grayson Highlands State Park

This past weekend's camping trip was absolutely amazing. We drove 3.5 miles through curvy mountain roads and found ourselves in Mouth of Wilson, VA- home to Grayson Highlands State Park. We paid our small overnight parking fee, threw our heavy packs on our backs, buckled Eisley to her tiny pack, and headed out on the trail.

It wasn't even a quarter of a mile in that I started to sense ponies (you may say it was the smell of poo but I think it was the sweet smell of grass and beauty).  My heart started to beat a little faster, and as we rounded a corner... BAM! I saw PONIES!!!!!!!!!!  I tried to stay calm and collected, but inside I looked like this:
No, this isn't me, although I do sometimes wear my hair like that.

We crossed the first fenced thresh hold and the ponies immediately came up to me, smelling my clothes and checking things out. Probably looking for a snack. After a quick hello, we continued our trek, because he had to hike in 2 more miles and set up camp before dark.  (And no, hiking 2 miles with a pack on your back is NOT the same thing as walking 2 miles around your neighborhood. It is much more difficult, I promise.)

So we finally reached camp and got all set up.  Ross fetched us water from the nearby stream and ran it through our purifier so we could have cool, fresh mountain spring water (not just the kind that is advertised that way and comes from a plastic bottle). We cooked miso soup and thai noodles for dinner, drank wine from our giant juice box, and played cards in our tent (the game was War... Ross won... he also cheated).

At 7am we woke up to this sunrise:
 
Love!

I was still a little tired. And cold. And wearing Ross' jacket and boots.


No make-up/first thing in the morning/but we still love each other picture!

After a quick breakfast we realized that the storm clouds were rolling in FAST, so we scurried to pack up our tent before the impending doom of a rain storm.  Once we were back on the trail it was time for my favorite part of the trip... pony searching.

We hiked out via the Appalachian Trail and met up with ponies along the way. Every time we came across a new cluster of ponies I saw fireworks in my head:
Some people may say that seeing fireworks is a sign that something is wrong in my brain...
I claim it was just pony excitement.

I made friends with two baby ponies who I was convinced loved me back. They followed me around and kept nuzzling into my stomach. I fell in love.... hard and fast.
True love.
 
The whole way home I begged Ross to let me have a pony one day... trying for the logic that ponies are just like giant dogs and wouldn't be THAT much trouble. They could even help with our garden!! He didn't buy it. I did make him promise me a "maybe." Who wouldn't want to wake up to this every day:
PONY!!!!!!!!

So a lot more happened on the trip, but I feel like pictures tell the story better than my silly words. Here is a quick glimpse:
Heading off on the trail

Ponies ahead!

Mountains!


Sweet hair-do!

My favorites

"Take me home with you, PLEASE!"

Eisley was OK with the ponies until I started giving them too much attention.

A must-hiking spot for everyone!

The end!

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