Our Trip to Asheville, NC - (The Mountains)
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The hiking begins in Dupont State Park.

Oh, we had a wonderful time in the mountains. It was about a 4 -4 1/2 hour drive and the kids were great. We arrived on Saturday and checked out downtown Asheville and then went to check into our cabin  (Suzie's Cabin) in the afternoon. The cabin was great, 2 bed 2 bath with all the amenities. We really loved the Jacuzzi on the deck!  It rained most of the time while we were there, but it was a drizzle type rain during the day and heavy rain at night. We just hung out at the cabin that night and played with the kids. A quick trip out to dinner and we were all ready to call it a night.

The next morning, Sunday we were all up early and ready to hit the trails.  We were informed that there were some waterfalls with fairly easy hiking trails that may be somewhat okay with a stroller. Off we went to Dupont State Park. It was about an hour away and the day was pretty overcast with misty rain. Such a gorgeous drive with plush green woods all around us. We found our 1st stop which was the trail to Hooker Falls. Other than some slippery mud, it wasn't a bad hike at all. Lars just had a ball throwing rocks into the river, they were beautiful rocks too. Once we reached the falls we noticed 2 guys kayaking down the river heading to the falls. We back tracked a bit to see them go over. Oh my was Lars impressed. He of course asked a million questions, but the gist of it all was that he wanted to know what they were doing. He now wants us to buy him a kayak, so he can do that too. We told him he would have to wait at least until he was in Kindergarten.
We hiked back to the car, threw a few more rocks and drove down the road about a mile to the Triple Falls Trail.

This was a little longer hike and steeper muddy hills to climb and go down with misty rain to Triple Falls. We first followed a path that took us to the covered bridge just above the top of the Falls. We could only hear that falls but couldn't see them, so we hiked back to a fork in the trail and took the other trail. This led us to the front of the falls and oh they were gorgeous. Lars hitched a ride on Daddy's shoulder at this point as we had already walked over 4 miles this day according to the pedometer. We rested and admired the falls then a hike back to the car. We drove through the mountains a bit and then found a cute little place to eat a very late lunch in Hendersonville. We then headed back and arrived at the cabin around 4pm. As we were all a little tuckered and nap time was missed for the kids, we all took a nap for about 1 1/2 hours. We just ate dinner at home and took it easy the remainder of the evening. The bedroom on the 1st floor was carpeted and pretty kid friendly, so we spent plenty of time in there rough housing and playing with all of the toys that had to come.

Monday, we were all a little tired from the prior days activities and woke up a little later than usual. It was a much heavier rain this day, so we decided it would be best to find an indoor activity. We remembered passing a place named "Fun Depot", so off we went to check it out. We ended up stay almost 3 hours. It was an indoor arcade, mini golf, soft play gym, rock climbing, batting cages etc. Lars had his first taste of video games and definitely has the makings of an addict. We had a great time here and then headed back to the cabin to try and have an early naptime for the kids than the day prior. After naps it was up and off to Lake Julian Park. We played there for a while and decided we would go for a scenic drive. We went through some very windy mountain roads to a small town named Bat Cave. Didn't see any caves, but got to check out our destination for the following day, Chimney Rock Park. We found a less curvy road to return to the cabin.

Tuesday, was another hiking day and off to Chimney Rock Park. We arrived at the park and all went up a 26 story elevator through solid rock in 30 seconds. Once up that high we went on a short trail and up several stairs to be atop Chimney Rock. Week knees for Heidi and no fears for anyone else and we were on top of the world. That is until we read the elevation sign of only 2280ft.  Mountains? Guess some people haven't been to the Sierras. Anyway it was breath taking and not so rainy today. Strollers were not allowed on any of the trails in the park as it is too dangerous, so we rented a pack and Anya had a cush ride on daddy's back. We went down over 100 stairs to get to the Hickory Nut Falls Trail. Once on the trail is was pretty smooth sailing. Anya was babbling away and hitting daddy on the back. Passers by thought it was adorable and got a big chuckle with Alan's comment "This is the only station I get", while pointing at Anya. Lars was a trooper and hiked along on every trail. He was getting and then he spotted the waterfall. It must have been over 200ft up and he yell "Daddy, there is a waterfall behind you". As if we couldn't hear the rumble and see this huge waterfall. It was spectacular. There was a small fenced in viewing area at the base of the falls. There was so much mist blowing around it was perfect to cool down after the 3/4 mile hike up hill. Lars was so excited and Anya expressed her excitement as well. She tried jumping up and down in the back pack and hitting daddy while laughing. We of course picked up a few rocks and threw them into the water. Time to hike back.

We headed back and it was all down hill, so not too bad until... remember those 100+ stairs we came down?  Time to go back up. Lars was going up one step at a time as he was very tired. Time to pick him up and just get some momentum. Alan and Anya were already at the top as Alan's legs made it down the hill much faster than Lars'. We barreled up the stairs and returned the back pack. We then drove through the park to another trail that is made for Kids.  It was a trail that had signs explaining the native animals and creatures, with cute sculptures along the way. This was another 3/4 mile loop trail and boy was it hot and humid. After mastering this with the stroller (NOT a stroller friendly trail with stairs and big rocks and logs to hurdle), we went to a little air conditioned hut to visit some snakes. We did see some huge butterflies and then decided it was time for Lunch at 2pm. We had lunch at a little cafe along the river and again had to throw some rocks.  Back to our cabin we go for naptime. Naptime was late again so bedtime was off a bit too. We were scheduled to head home in the morning, but decided to leave about 8:30pm that night to avoid any commute traffic. Other fringe benefits were the kids would sleep in the car the entire way home and they would be able to go to school all day Wednesday and we could get some rest. Yep that was a great plan, so home word bound we were. We only hit one thunder and lightening storm near Winston-Salem.

We just loved our trip to the mountains. There is so much to do there and next time we will stay longer. It will really be fun when the kids are a bit older and can go white water rafting and cave hiking too.