Tallulah Gorge bridge

I was looking for a shot to post this morning and remembered that I never put up this panorama of the Tallulah Gorge looking down on the suspension bridge.  Every time I look at mountain shots, I am reminded of how that cool, fresh mountain air makes me feel so good.  Being up in the higher elevations always seems to lift my spirit as well.

Maybe it is the altitude itself or perhaps the amazing views but a visit to the mountains is always worth the trip.

Tallulah Gorge State Park
Tallulah Falls, Georgia, USA

Nikon D7100
Tamron SP 16-300mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC
16mm @ f/11 – 1/100 sec – ISO 200

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Greasy Creek

When we visited Black Rock Mountain State Park a couple of weeks ago, we went looking for a waterfall that is on Greasy Creek near Black Rock Lake.  The image shown here was what I saw of the creek, which has a number of little cascades which I took to be what people said were the “falls”.  Apparently, there are actually some true waterfalls nearby but I missed the path for that.

It was nice to wander the pathways around the lake and admire the little stream flowing through groves of mountain laurel.  The woods were pleasantly shady and cool on a hot August day and the walk was enjoyable even though we didn’t locate the falls we were looking for.  Maybe we can make an autumn trip back up here and see it again when the leaves are changing.  I think that would be a fantastic opportunity for some nice landscapes.

 

Greasy Creek
Black Rock Mountain State Park
Mountain City, Georgia, USA

Nikon D7100
Tamron SP 16-300mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC
16mm @ f/18 – 1.3 sec – ISO 640

Living rock

When descending the Waterfall Trail at Cloudland Canyon, you are always close to a wall of sheer stone which is the side of the gorge cutting through the mountain.  The stone itself is beautiful to look at but, I found the plant life that grows on them even more interesting.

Much of the rock face is covered with mosses and lichen which are fed by trickling, dripping trails of water that seems to seep right out of the stone.  There are a few spots where the water splashes onto the trail but for the most part, you just see these gleaming little droplets coming down the sides.

Even in August, when the temperatures are soaring and the waterfalls are somewhat restrained, this seemingly endless supply of water clings to the stone and nourishes these patches of green.  It is truly amazing to see how nature thrives even in conditions which you would think would yield nothing at all.  Life always finds a way and is always awesome to observe.

Cloudland Canyon State Park
Rising Fawn, Georgia, USA

Nikon D7100
Tamron SP 16-300mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC
58mm @ f/10 – 1/13 sec – ISO 800

Besides waterfalls…

The scenery at Cloudland Canyon State Park is amazing.  Most people remember the fantastic mountain views through the gorge and out into the distance.  The waterfalls are beautiful and peaceful but what else is there?  Well, for one thing, there is a beautiful variety of mountain streams and glades of tress that make you feel like you’re somewhere far away from civilization.

This spot is just a little downstream from Cherokee Falls but the moss-covered boulders and the contrast between the dark shadows and bright light made me feel like I was lost in a primeval forest.  It’s nice to lose yourself in a quiet little pocket of nature even if it really is only a few steps away from the busy world we fight through each day.

Cloudland Canyon State Park
Rising Fawn, Georgia, USA

Nikon D7100
Vanguard Altra Pro 263 AT tripod
Tamron SP 16-300mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC
31mm @ f/18 – 1/4 sec – ISO 200

Cherokee Falls

The closer of the two falls (1/2 mile hike) on the Waterfalls Trail at Canyonland Canyon State Park is Cherokee Falls.  Although this one is a bit smaller than Hemlock Falls, it is more accessible.  The rocks are a bit slippery but many people venture out in and around the base of the falls here.  I personally, like this one better of the two.  Maybe it’s because the boulders are a little smaller and you get a less obstructed view of the water at the bottom.  I guess it doesn’t make much difference if you stay up on the observation deck but, I like this one none the less.

Cloudland Canyon State Park
Rising Fawn, Georgia, USA

Nikon D7100
Vanguard Altra Pro 263 AT tripod
Tamron SP 16-300mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC
31mm @ f/18 – 1/4 sec – ISO 200

Hemlock Falls

One of Cloudland Canyon State Park’s biggest attractions is the Waterfalls Trail, a 1 mile hike that includes a 600 step, 400 foot descent to get to the two main falls.  The further one down the trail is Hemlock Falls, shown here.  You can hear the falling water from the top of the trail and it echoes off the mountainsides as you walk down.  Rushing water flows through the gorge making beautiful scenery all the way down.

Hemlock Falls is a 90 foot drop of  Sitton’s Gulch stream into a boulder-filled pool.  There is a nice observation deck where you get a good view of the falls but to get down to the spot where I took my image, you have to scramble over slippery rocks and boulders.  It’s not all that bad a climb but certainly not a well-groomed path.

Cloudland Canyon State Park
Rising Fawn, Georgia, USA

Nikon D7100
Vanguard Altra Pro 263 AT tripod
Tamron SP 16-300mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC
16mm @ f/18 – 1 sec – ISO 100

Cloudland Canyon Overlook

Joyce and I finally got our Canyon Climbers Club cards filled in!  We drove up to Cloudland Canyon State Park and hiked the stairs down to see the two waterfalls that are major attractions for the park.  We had visited this park once before last Spring but at that time, we were not aware of the Canyon Climbers program and failed to get our cards punched.  After having done some of the parks more than once over the last 2 years, we finally got it finished.  Now we can send in for our official t-shirts – Woo hoo!

This view is from the Main Overlook located behind the Interpretive Center.  It was a bit hazy when we arrived but the view from Lookout Mountain was great.  It is really amazing to experience the beauty of the North Georgia mountains.  I’m going to have to start working on 4-seasons views of these areas to see the changes that happen.  Hopefully, we will get a chance to return in the Autumn and see what it looks like in fall colors.

More pictures to come soon.

Cloudland Canyon State Park
Rising Fawn, Georgia, USA

4-frame panorama merged in Adobe Lightroom
Nikon D7100
Vanguard Altra Pro 263 AT tripod
Tamron SP 16-300mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC
16mm @ f/16 – 1/15 sec – ISO 125