Saturday, April 8, 2006

Mts of NE GA & SW NC

The title looks like it's written in code.
We were camped about 20 miles from Athens Ga., and could smell the presences of a Military museum nearby so off we go in search of it. It didn't take long and we found the entrance to the Navy Supply Corps Museum, the only trouble was it was the wrong entrance, the private civilian guard there refused to allow us on the base for some reason. Now I know they have a museum and it's open to the public so we decided to sneak in, not really we drove around the base until we found another gate. At this one we asked the guard if we could tour the museum, he had us pull into the parking lot and about 3 minutes later we had an escort to the museum.

The base is located on the old State Normal College Campus, (a women's college during the Civil War) and the museum is housed in an old Carnegie Library building, built in 1910. The building itself is listed on the National Register of Historic places. We didn't realize how important supply officers were until coming here, the Navy runs on supplies and they have to ship hundreds of millions of pounds each year making sure they go to the right places, so without the Supply Officers the Navy would be sunk.
They have many displays and models of the USS Supply, (I through IV) the first being a four mass schooner and the last being a state of the art computerize ship. We spent about an hour and a half to see everything. Remember the Maine and also remember to use the gate on the eastside of the base to get in.

While we were in the area we decided to drop down and see the State Botanical Gardens.
The University of Georgia runs the gardens, the BULLDOGS for those of you that did not it. We spent around two and a half hours here and that included lunch at the little café. The food was excellent and the prices were reasonable but the surroundings were fantastic. We only walked half of the gardens as it was getting late, always leave something to come back to, there is still another 100 acres or so for us to cover and still miles of trails to walk. There is a huge granite globe that rotated while floating in a fountain; you almost have to see it to under stand how it works.

It must be Hall of Fame month because we were just wandering around lost and stumbled on to the campus of Piedmont College that just so happens to be where Johnny Mize went to school and played ball. Who is Johnny Mize you ask? Why he was the original "BIG CAT" of baseball, click the picture and read up on him.
The athletic area of Piedmont his named in his honor, we were there for about an hour looking at the displays they have in the lobby following his major league career.
(Click on picture to the right to enlarge, once it opens click on it again to enlarge it again so you can read it.)

Well as long as we're camped in Helen Ga. We decided to do a little hiking back to a few of the waterfalls plus this helps us keep our youthful figures. The first one we went to involved dodging lumber trucks coming at you on a single lane dirt road that had a 20 to 80 foot drop off into a cool relaxing mountain stream. Once back there I was forced to climb the side of the mountain, they call them hills down here, to find a cache for our hobby. After this one we followed a two lane paved road until it turned into a single lane then a dirt lane then a trail. We kept going and came to a stream, a close look showed that the road continued on the other side so in we went, another 100 yards and it was through another stream, easy way to wash the tires. We then found the parking area for Helton Creek Falls, this one had a nice trail that took you about 300 yards back into the woods to the falls. There is an upper and lower falls and both were great as you can see from the pictures.

We have moved on to Waynesville N.C. which is right near the Blue Ridge Parkway, the Smokey Mountains and Asheville. We heard a rumor that there was a Whispering Giant in the area, over near the Cherokee Reservation, so we took a drive in search of it, and we found it right away, honest injun we really did. This turned out to be one of the better ones that we have found, five total, only 58 more to go.

Since the carving was right in front of the Museum of the Cherokee Indian we figured that we had to go in. We're glad we did, since in our travels we run across so many different markers and such about the various Indians, this museum brought them all together and made understanding everything about them much easier. It looked small from the outside but we were in there over two hours. After that it was a nice sunny drive back to camp on the Blue Ridge Parkway and get ready for the big storms that are suppose to head our way to night.
More when it happens.

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