On Thursday afternoon Andrew and I made the somewhat last-minute decision to take the day off Friday and hike. We already had a three day weekend for Memorial Day and figured, why not make it four? Plus, we hadn’t been hiking since that bizarre warm day back in January, and we were itching for some mountain views. After a bit of deliberation–we wanted to minimize driving distance and maximize views–we decided on Dobie Mountain. The starting point of this hike shares a parking lot with one of our favorites, Humpback Rocks, and is less than ninety minutes from Richmond, but we had never done it before Friday. As it turns out, we didn’t know what we were missing.
The weather forecast for Friday showed us that we’d have a cooler hike (about 55 degrees,) and we dressed appropriately for the temperature, but what we did not anticipate was the wind: 25-30 mph! Thankfully, when we’d walked out our front door that morning it was raining, and even though I knew it wasn’t in the forecast for where we were hiking, I ran back inside to get my rain coat. Just in case. I definitely needed the extra (wind resistant) layer!
Aside from the wind, which wasn’t terrible once we entered the woods, the whole day was fantastic. We took a picture of the map in parking lot to use as our trail map:
Starting at the Humpback Rocks Parking Area, we went up the Albright Loop, onto the Appalachian Trail to the Glass Hollow Overlook, then back to finish the loop. The first half of the hike is downhill with a lot of rocks and switchbacks, then the trail ascends to the overlook and back to the start. It was a good workout, but not quite as strenuous as Humpback Rocks.
Braving the wind. My hair tells the story.
The views at the overlook were incredible:
Because it was a weekday and we were on the less popular of two neighbor hikes, we didn’t see any other hikers once we left the parking lot. Beautiful solitude… Together. 😉 We set up our ENO hammock and took a break for lunch.
PBJ’s on gluten-free bread, apples, tortilla chips, carrots (Andrew,) trail mix (Catherine; fine, I only ate the chocolate)
Also, despite using the restroom immediately before starting the hike and drinking less water than I probably should have, nature called. Guys have it so easy when it comes to peeing in the woods. Girls? It’s a little tougher…and not something I have practiced often. Here’s my advice: after finding a safe location (no poison ivy or people,) choose a tree, point your backside downhill, grab the tree for support, and squat as if you are water skiing with your butt very close to the water. That advice and mental image are free. You’re welcome 😉
Cool finds of the day: a log that looked like a dragon (I decided to ride it,) and… these green things:
The whole day was a blast, and we were glad we made the trip. Lots of quality time, beautiful views, and–one of my favorite parts of hiking–a workout that doesn’t seem like a workout. Seriously, if I lived within 15 minutes of a mountain, I would hike every day. Or at least a few times a week.
Do you ever use hiking as a workout? What’s your favorite hike/place to hike?