One of our summer adventures was a hike up Mary’s Rock in Shenandoah National Park. This was a favorite hike of my mother, and I’ve done it a few times over the years, but this was our first attempt with the kids.
It’s such a pretty hike, on a lush and verdant trail.
And it had so many interesting mushrooms! I fully admit that I annoyed my family by stopping constantly to take pictures of the mushrooms. But seriously, look:
Are they not amazing and beautiful? And that’s just a small selection of what we saw.
Part of the hike follows the Appalachian Trail.
Alas, we didn’t meet any thru hikers that day. But we did explore the remnants of a PATC Cabin.
To get to the top of Mary’s Rock, a climb is required.
Matthew, Henry, and Abigail loved climbing on the rocks. Me and Betsy, no so much.
But the views from the top were outstanding, as advertised.
That loop of road is the Thornton Gap entrance to Shenandoah NP, far below us.
Henry Heatwole’s Guide to Shenandoah National Park and Skyline Drive, Fourth Edition advised that the 3.7 mile round-trip hike, with a climb of about 1,200 feet, would take about three and a half hours, and we found this to be true. Even with a three-year-old hiker and my need to photograph all the mushrooms. The kids did pretty well, up until the very end. But we all agreed it was worth it.
In other accomplishments, here are the updates on my November goals:
NaBloPoMo: This is 23/30. Clearly I’m catching up on Things I Meant to Post Last Summer But Didn’t.