Thursday, May 5, 2011

A drive up along the Blue Ridge Parkway

I did some sewing yesterday evening - first time since I made the Burda cardigan I posted about.   My hands were deteriorating rapidly prior to getting the IVIG and I hadn't realized how much they had changed for the worse until then.    I did manage to sew some black snap tape onto this By Popular Demand jacket I'm sending my sister in TX.      If I hadn't gotten the IVIG intervention, I probably would not be walking right now and would be in a hospital.     Thanks to each and all for taking the time to write me lovely notes and comments here and on the sewing board.    Your encouragement means so much.   

Today we decided to burn up a little of the nearly $4 a gallon gas and drive the Blue Ridge Parkway from the entrance near the VA Hospital in Asheville on Route 70, starting at the Folk Art Center,  to where you exit at Route 8o south toward Marion NC.    It's not a long drive - less than 25 miles, but you are at some of the highest elevations on the Parkway, and it's good for me to get out.   It has been a cool spring and even cooler up on the high elevations where weather, temperatures and winds are extreme compared to where we live in the valley above the Swannanoa River flood plain around 2,300 feet elevation.    For example, last night temperatures at elevations above 4,000 feet were 28 degrees with a dew point of 29 and wind gusts of 15 mph.   That's downright miserable.  To contrast, down here the lowest temp outside my north facing kitchen window last night was 48 and no wind.   The parkway is closed during the winter because of all the snow and because the tunnels actually freeze nearly shut.    The mists and humidity freezes in layers and the rangers told us that a man can barely crawl through the hole that remains.

I took a number of photos and posted them on the Blue Ridge Parkway Flickr Set.     You will find the icicles on both north and south rock faces in May interesting.    Our rhododendrons are already blooming down here but the native ones up there won't bloom until mid-June.   I photographed a wild turkey looking for one of the girls.    Those are the first photos in the set and he is beautiful and quite camouflaged.   You can see the Burnett Reservoir that is high up in the mountain north of our house.   That is where Asheville gets its water.    I would link some photos here but am having trouble doing that right now.     You can see why they call it the Blue Ridge Parkway because the haze makes the mountain ridges look blue.   Enjoy the trip!


  1. Sometimes a trip like that does more good for the spirit than any medicine.


  2. That is absolutely gorgeous!