Doug & Barbara Peterson

Doug & Barbara Peterson
Barbara & I at a scenic overlook on the skyline drive in the Rocky Mountain National Park, 8-13-2016

Saturday, November 14, 2020

Fall Trip 2020, Vogel State Park, Blairsville, GA

 Vogel State Park


Lake Trahlyta


Located in the north Georgia in the southern portion of the appalachian mountains Vogel State Park is in the shadow of Blood mountain, the second highest mountain in Georgia. The area is forested with many places to explore nearby. The camp grounds are nestled in an old growth forest with clean restrooms and lots of campsites. Lake Trahlyta is adjacent to the visitors center with cabins near the lake for those who are not campers. The lake is popular for anglers who fish the lake shores for large mouth bass and trout. 

My brother Danny at our campsite in Vogel State Park

Lake Trahlyta has a one mile hiking trail that encircles the lake.

Not far from Vogel State Park is Neel's Gap. The Appalachian Trail begins here with facilities for hikers to begin or end there journey through the mountains. Great views of the surrounding mountains and valleys are big attraction here. There is a gift store and picnic tables that are great for visitors who choose to stop for lunch and enjoy the fresh mountain air. 

 Neel Gap on the Appalachian Trail

View of the late autumn foliage from Neel's Gap

My Brother Danny and I at Neel Gap

Hikers shoes hanging from a tree at the southern end of the
Appalachian Trail, What a story they could tell.

Gift store and cafe at Neel Gap

Just north of Vogel State Park is the the Byron Herbert Reece Farm and Heritage Center dedicated to the renowned Appalachian poet and novelist. The grounds are a great tribute to this very talented poet who gained inspiration from the nature that surrounded his family farm nestled in the mountains of northern Georgia. My brother and I enjoyed walking the grounds filled with historic buildings and common grounds that reflect the beauty that surrounds this special place. It is definitely a place to check out it you are traveling through this scenic section of northern Georgia.



The farm buildings that have been restored to there original state

The mountain stream that flows through the grounds

A goat and a donkey kept a watch fall eye out for food and a pet on the forehead

The old barn silhouetted against the back drop of the changing autumn leaves

An inspirational poem by Bryon Herbert Reece

 The Appalachian mountains surround this area with a rugged beauty

Land of the dancing rabbits

If you are in this area you will find that it is worth you while to take time to explore Vogel State Park and surrounding area. You will find a good deal of nature and beauty here that is well worth you time to seek to enjoy.




Sunday, October 25, 2020

Fall Trip, Tallulah Gorge State Park, North Georgia

 Tallulah Gorge State Park



Tallulah Gorge State Park is located in north Georgia in the foothills of the appalachian mountains. The Gorge is breath taking with it's series of falls and steep cliffs that provide for great views as you hike along the many rim trails that surround this area. There is a suspension bridge at the bottom of the gorge that visitors can hike down to for a great view from within the gorge. The campgrounds here are very nice with electric and water. The fall colors here are spectacular in late October with crisp cool days and lovely nights for campfires. The restrooms are clean and well kept. The staff here is friendly and helpful to the campers.

Our campsite at Tallulah Gorge State Park


The fall colors are spectacular in late October

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The Interpretative Center is where some the trails to the Gorge begin


Suspension bridge at the bottom of the gorge


Tallulah River Gorge


There are many great views from the rim trails

As a resident of the state of Florida I have found that Georgia State Parks are well maintained and staffed with good people who care for their visitors. 

My brother Danny at our campsite. 


The bath house at Tallulah was covenant with washers and dryers.


Danny and I at an overlook in the Gorge

My brother and I enjoyed our late October visit to Tallulah Gorge State Park. I am happy to be in Georgia to celebrate his 72nd birthday on October 29th.



Fall Trip 2020, Tugaloo State Park, NE Georgia

Tugaloo State Park



Located in NE Georgia this beautiful park is located on a reservoir that is part of the Tugaloo river that seperates the eastern border of Georgia with South Carolina. The park is spacious with many sites located near the water with great views. My brother and I arrived in the fall season of late October. I picked him up at his home near Athens, GA to take him on a camping trip to celebrate his 72nd birthday. The park is very peaceful with many activities from kayaking, canoeing, fishing and hiking. The park is quite popular as a family destination for campers who come from the surrounding states to enjoy nature and the water sports that make this park special.

Paddelers enjoying a lovely afternoon on Lake Tugaloo

Boating is quite popular on Lake Tugaloo

Floating boat dock popular with fishing enthusiasts 

Lake shore illuminated by the late day setting sun


The park has a yurt village and rental cabins for those who are not campers. The camp store has camping supplies, ice and fire wood for the cool fall nights. During the fall season campers decorate their sites to enjoy the holidays. We visited Tugaloo about a week before Halloween. Many of the sites spared no expense in setting up their sites with decorations that the children loved not to mention the adults to.

Halloween Decorations at some of the sites in the park




Our campsite was very nice. We stayed for four nights and had a a full set up just across from the nicely kept restrooms. We had nice views of the lake with a old growth forest surrounding us. 

My brother Danny and I at our campsite

Tugaloo State Park in northeast GA is a great park to relax and enjoy a campfire while taking in the great outdoors.
 


Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Florida State Parks, Anastasia State Park, St. Augustine, FL

Anastasia State Park

St. Augustine, FL


Anastasia State Park is just east of historic St. Augustine, FL The Park is a beautiful place with great campsites, pristine beaches, and amazing landscapes all nestled in old growth forests native to the area. 

Our campsite in the Coquina Loop near the beach
The campsites at Anastasia are nestled in the parks sand dune landscape populated by plants and old growth trees that are native to the area. There are paved roads with sites that have great spacing providing a bit of privacy that campers love. The restrooms are clean and the facilities are well maintained. The staff is very friendly and the wonderful volunteers here are  helpful attending to the park visitors needs. 

The Island Beach Camp Store and Cafe
The Island Beach Camp Store and Cafe is a great place to shop or enjoy lunch while visiting the beach. The staff is friendly and the food is good. There is an outside pavalon adjacent to the Cafe with tables and a soothing breeze from the nearby Atlantic Ocean. 

The walkway out to the Beach at Anastasia State Park

View of the beach from one of the two observation points in the park

So easy on the feet, like a highway to the beach

Sea Oats are some of the natural plants that create a landscape that is amazing

A little lagoon left over from the high tide

The waves break against the shore line at Anastasia beach
The beach at Anastasia State Park is a wonderful place to relax and spend some quality time enjoying the unspoiled landscapes of the park. The dune line stands out like a sentinel protecting the natural lands nearby. The facilities are well built and nicely designed to create an atmosphere that is perfect for beach goers. It is a great place to enjoy the sounds of the surf. 

The St. Augustine Lighthouse

The Ancient Dunes Trail at Anastasia State Park
The historic St. Augustine lighthouse can be seen from the observation boardwalks at the park. The history here is amazing with lots of places to visit that beckon back to a day long ago. The Ancient Dunes Trail is a nicely shaded trail  that meanders through the old dunes and old growth forests that are native to this area. 


Anastasia Watersports Rental Store

Canoe & Kayak launch at Anastasia State Park

Gopher Tortoise on the move near the kayak launch area
Anastasia State Park has a nice store near the bay where visitors can rent kayaks or canoes. The launch area is just behind the store with plenty of parking available for those who bring their own kayaks and canoes. There is a turtle crossing nearby where I was lucky enough to see a Gopher Tortoise out for a late afternoon stroll. 


St. Augustine Amphitheater

Spacious and comfortable seating
St. Augustine Amphitheater is adjacent to Anastasia State Park. The park has a walk through entrance from the park that campers can access with there gate code that they get when they check in at the ranger station. Many visitors to the park plan their trips according to the performance schedule available on the Amphitheater's website. 


The Old Spanish Coquina Quarries

The viewing area of the Quarries

The Quarries are barely visible due to the erosion over the years
The old Spanish Quarries are visible near the entrance to the park. Many years ago this area was used for extracting Coquina rocks for building in the area. The Chief Tomoka statue at Tomoka State Park was constructed partially out of coquina rock.


Chief Tomoka at Tomoka Sate Park, Ormond Beach, FL
I would highly recommend a visit to Anastasia State Park. It has beautiful beaches, lovely hammock forests and great facilities with historic St. Augustine nearby to explore. I would like to take you on a little walk out to the beach followed by the sunrise. Happy travels.