Sunday Drive – Part 1

I don’t want to overwhelm you guys with tons and tons of photos, but since I love taking pictures you guys just may have to endure the millions of photos I’m going to post on here.

Last Sunday, I had the bright idea to just do something with the kids. The kids were getting cabin fever. To be honest, I was too. It seems like it’s been raining since they got out of school or so soggy they couldn’t go outside to play. I recently looked up taking the kids to Kentucky Down Under. I thought it would be a nice way to spend a day with them. Holy crap… just the admission without taxes was going to be $50 for the two of them and myself. That plus the expense of gas and food… that was out. I was down about the whole thing, but when we all got up on Sunday, it was so beautiful outside. It was sunny and hot and humid… perfect day for a trip to the lake.Huntsville Store parking the rain.
Well, another wonderful idea…down the drain. Literally. We didn’t even make it out of town before the bottom dropped out of it. This picture does absolutely no justice to the amount of water that was falling. We had to eventually pull over at this country store to wait for it to pass. Once it looked to be slacking up, off we went again… only to have another round of showers completely soak us before we got 5 miles down the road. A trip that should have only taken us about 30 to 35 minutes took us at least an hour. I thought for sure that once we got there, everyone would have left and we’d have the majority of the tiny beach available to ourselves. I was completely wrong and I don’t think it had even rained a single stinkin’ drop there. We had contemplated hiking the trail and after seeing the gazillion and one people on the beach, hiking seemed like a great plan. Uh huh…. g-r-e-a-t plan.Beginning of Laurel Trail The beginning of the trail has a wonderful sign telling the name of the trail as “Laurel Trail” and the information that the trail in 1.5 miles to that point. One would just figure that the trail looped back around. Most trails loop back to their beginning or at least close to their beginnings… yea, not this one. And there wasn't a single sign saying so! This we did not discover until, well… 1.5 miles later. Along the way. Most of the trail ran close to the lake so the views were…. expecting me to say great weren’t you? No, not really. Mostly obscured by trees. The rock formations we came across were pretty awesome though.
Lake Malone

Neil & I Kaia & I

The kids and I took advantage when Chris ventured on a well worn (not exactly on the right trail) path. It was fairly close to the water so the kids and I just stayed up on the path.
Cute little duckies
Chris came back up to where we were and pointed out some cute ducklings that were in the cove. They started swimming away so I got as close to the edge of the water as I could to snap a picture.
Ooooo.... moss.
I had to capture this not so frequent occurrence. The kids actually getting along for the briefest of seconds. One of them discovered some moss on a rock and pointed it out to the other so they had to check it out.
Where's the troll?

A hobbits house??
By this point, we had discovered that this trail should have been named Tick-a-palooza Trail instead of Laurel Trail. I missed this “doorway” in the tree because we were practically running through the trail. Neil said Mom, Mom, look! It’s a hobbit's house! It really did look like a wooden door minus the doorknob.
Up or down?
It really bothers me when people carve their names in trees or otherwise vandalize public property. Why do people feel they need to write on everything? Anyway, this graffiti made me immediately think of the movie, “The Labyrinth”. I was halfway expecting to see tiny little people come out and turn the arrows the other way.
Falling rock zone
Turtle....turtle.... He doesn’t look well camouflaged in this photo, but he was so well hidden, right in the middle of the trail, that I almost stepped on him. He didn’t seem too startled or scared by us so we just walked around him and kept going.
Are you serious?!?!
Ok…first let me tell you that about a quarter of a way into this adventure, I suggested that we turn around and go back the way we had first come. Mainly because we didn’t really know where the trail lead or how far in (or out) we were and secondly, the ticks were really bad. Chris decided that it would take longer to go back the way we had come and continuing on would be the best thing to do. I did not agree with this, but I was out voted 3 to 1. Onward, we traveled. About 50 (seriously) ticks later (we had to make stops for tick checks), we arrived at this sign. Luckily, there was a nice little bench located in front of this sign. I really needed it too because the camping area that was a half mile from the sign was no where near where we had parked our car. I resisted saying I told you so.
Kids will be kids... They had these little excavators at the camp ground play ground. I’ve never seen these before, but Chris tested them. Kid tested…Chris approved. After taking a brief pit stop to slide, swing, and dig, we walked on to our car. We made sandwiches and sat at a picnic table under the canopy of some trees. We all cooled off, filled our stomachs, and homeward bound we were.
Everly Bros. chimneys...
These chimneys are all that is left of the Everly Brothers Lake Malone Inn. It was built in 1975, purchased by Don Everly in 1997. It burned down in July of ‘05 or ‘06, but they’ve never done anything with the property. I never got the chance to stay there, but I’ve heard it was a nice place with a wonderful restaurant.

We took a more scenic route home. Gravel roads, old cemeteries, even a water tower… more photos later. It didn’t start out to be the best Sunday drive, but it turned into a nice day spent together.

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