Thursday, May 22, 2014

It was an Epic Mountain Adventure Part 1

Saturday morning Bigun and I took off about 9:30 am heading for Boone. Plans had been made. Reservations had been made.  These people were ready for a road trip.

This would become a theme. I got so many pictures.....

 We stopped along the way in Winston-Salem at a Waffle House and grabbed some lunch. We had plans, so it had to be expeditious.

This year, her Indian Princess tribe had a lot of fun at their 3rd year Spring Outing. Since the date was the same as Morgan's wedding, we had to miss it. To make it up to her, I tried to put together a trip just for me and her to get out on the road. I wanted it to be something special and memorable for her, fun for me as well, and in easy driving distance. What I ended up putting together, well, I think I got more out of it than she did. She must have gotten sick of the endless stories about stuff we did 20 years ago.

I settled on an overnight trip to Boone NC. First up was a reservation to go horseback riding, then dinner reservations at the restaurant where Kelley and I met (18 years ago last month). Then we could tool around Blowing Rock for a while, and Sunday could be Boone Day. Just tool around town and see what kind of trouble we could find on a cool sunday morning.

It all timed out perfectly. We got checked into the hotel just in time to change clothes and get out to the farm. Dutch Creek Trails is this amazing horse farm about 15 minutes outside of Boone. We got there about 10 minutes before the ride started at 2 pm. There were 8 of us in the group, and the guides were hilarious. The trails were all on the farm property, and the whole ride was about as perfect as could be. Some of the other people riding had never touched a horse before and they loved it by the end.

on the tractor ride to where the horses are

Ella getting on her horse

It was a beautiful day to ride

Big horse for a big girl

Riding on the trail. Ella stayed behind the lead guide.

Selfies on horseback

The dogs went the whole way

We stopped to rest in a clearing

My horse had to pee here

Happy on horseback!

Can't ask for a happier kid

Beautiful country up there, great day to ride

After we got back, Ella was feeding the horses

Real cowboys with working mustaches and everything

Not a real cowboy. Thanks for the ride, horse!

Happy to be done

Cool farmhouse
It was only $100 for both of us to ride for about an hour and a half. The guides were real cowboys with working mustaches and everything. They were funny and knew how to keep us all safe. Ella's horse kept farting and they smelled really bad. I mean, regular farts are funny, but horse farts take it up to a whole new level. I actually had to tell somebody "I'll get out of your way as soon as my horse finishes taking a shit" one time. The other people riding were from New Jersey, so it was a fun group.  I really can't say enough good things about Dutch Creek Trails.  But I think I am done with the poop jokes.

We had just enough time to get back to the hotel and clean up some before dinner. Since Saturday was Blowing Rock day, we headed out to show her some of this charming small mountain town.

mind = blown

This is known as the "Fantastic View". When Kelley and I first met, she lived at the Fantastic View apartments, and we used to hang out on the deck there all day long just playing guitar and being goofy. Now the apartments got bulldozed, but near there is a restaurant with a webcam. So the Canyons Cam still shows the same view we had from that deck. We stopped in the restaurant parking lot because she was totally blown away by the view.  Imagine waking up to that every morning!

Outside Twigs

She was fascinated by the twig wall behind us
Twig's Restaurant is only a few blocks away. In 1996 I worked there as a dishwasher. After my shift was over one night, I hung out in the bar drinking an adult beverage with a friend when I accidentally stole a barstool. When the woman came back to claim her barstool back, well, the rest is history. So Ella and I sat in the same barstools that I stole way back when. $6/hour went a lot farther back then too, and that was a pretty good job for a college kid. This time, the 2 of us ran up a $55 bill, so Twigs ain't cheap. We should have sat at the bar and gotten the cheap menu. But it was worth it to show here where I met her mother. And I got to tell her lots of stories about the place and how the kitchen was setup, stuff like that. Totally worth it.

She'll never get to sleep now
After dinner we went to walk Main Street Blowing Rock. Kilwin's Ice Cream was the first stop, of course. Ella tried some fudge, she was really open minded about trying new flavors or foods. Kind of impressive, since she's usually a pretty picky eater. This time she fell for sea salt & caramel fudge.  Eventually we got her out of the candy store and ready to see the rest of main st.

This is a store called the Brass Exchange. Back in the day, Kelley was the assistant manager then the manager of that store, and I was the assistant then. The same guy owned another store on the same block, so we did a lot of work at that store as well. I'm sure Ella got quite bored listening to me tell stories about working retail as college students, but that's what she was in for.

Who doesn't love a giant foam cowboy hat?

Boler for the win!

She flipped over this skunk hat

I like this style

skunk... not so much
Eventually we found a t-shirt and hat store that was open and had a lot of laughs trying on hats and just being goofy. It really was a lot of fun.

Afterwards I wanted to find a bar and grab a few beers before going to the late night drunk eats restaurants in town, but she wanted to go back to the hotel and watch movies. So we settled on that. Blowing Rock Day had come to a close, and it was amazing. This was the start of a truly epic mountain adventure!

1 comment:

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

Wow, the horse back riding experience sounds awesome. And I think that is a reasonable price for the two of you! I have only rode horses once and I can't say I loved the experience - mostly because the horses just scared me.

Blowing Rock is such a cute town. We stopped at Twiggs to check out the view. That is cool that you got to show Ella your old stomping grounds! I love Kilwin's. My favorite ice cream is their salted caramel. Yum!