I was determined to get in one day of hiking/sightseeing before we leave here tomorrow, so regardless of the complaints of the kid who wanted to stay and play basketball all day, we took off after lunch to visit Cumberland Falls in the Daniel Boone National Forest. It was just a 30 mile drive through the scenic countryside, and we arrived at Cumberland Falls State Resort Park. We stopped in at the Visitor Center, and then walked along the observation platforms by the falls.
Nicolas was a willing model for me, and he enjoyed taking lots of pictures himself, too.
Bryce quickly got over his reluctance to come along with us, and started to enjoy himself, too!
So, after checking out the falls from all the easy access points, we picked up some sparkling clear Kentucky water ($6.00 for 4 bottles, but that was our only expense for the whole afternoon!),
changed into our sturdy hiking boots,
and got back in the car to cross the river to the Eagle Falls Trailhead.
The Eagle Falls trail is 1.5 miles round trip, plus a couple of spur trails to the Gorge Overlook and down to Eagle Falls, and as can be seen above, it was apparently voted the “Best Trail in Kentucky”!
We started out climbing up, up up . . .
overlooking the river above the falls,
and then up some more, until we reached the Civilian Conservation Corps Shelter at the Gorge Overlook.
Back down to the main trail, it was downhill from this point until we reached Eagle Falls. We walked through lots of really neat rock formations,
and saw some interesting plants, too!
We climbed over and under rocks, stopped to take a family portrait,
and the boys even found a little tunnel that they just HAD to see if they could squeeze through!
Nicolas managed to make it through, and Bryce followed right behind him – although didn’t have jeans to protect his legs!
I think he was having fun, and had forgotten all about basketball!
The final part of the trail involved some very narrow, steep stairs,
and then continued over rocks and logs,
until we reached our final destination . . . Eagle Falls.
Tom and I were ready for a rest, but the boys just never give up! They continued to climb on the rocks and explore all the nooks and crannies surrounding the falls!
They even found a way to get behind the falls!
It was a quiet day on the trail, and in the 2 hours it took us to get to Eagle Falls, we only saw 4 other people! It was after 5pm by then, and even though it would be cool to get a picture of a bear, we really didn’t care to run into one on the trail . . . so we decided it was time to head back to the car!
We put the camera away, and made quick work of the return trip . . . arriving back at the trailhead in just over an hour!
It was a great day for hiking, and even though the falls are smaller in Autumn than they probably are in the Spring, they were still awesome to see . . . Niagara of the South!
On the way back to the campground, we stopped for Nick to do a little car window-shopping,
and then finished the day with dinner at the place Bryce has been dying to get to . . . and it was pretty good . . . for a buffet!
Tomorrow we pack up and continue south . . . next stop – North Carolina!