North Georgia Road Trip

16 Mar

This past weekend I had the pleasure of spending the weekend with my little sister on a quick road trip through the north Georgia mountains.  She lives in NYC so she flew into Atlanta and I drove up from Orlando.  For starters, I hate the Atlanta airport.  Have you ever heard of a busy airport like Atlanta, having pick up AND drop off of passengers in the SAME LANES?! It was a disaster getting to her but once I did, we were on our way.

We made our way towards Athens for our first night, sort of a halfway point between Atlanta and Helen which is where we hoped to get some hikes and German fare.  After getting stuck in some nasty traffic we finally made it to the hotel at about midnight and we were both lights out pretty soon after.

Day 1 in Athens I had to take a work call first thing in the morning and while I did that, my sis, did her daily workout.  Afterwards, my friend Lisa, who works for UGA, picked us up and took us to an amazing restaurant!  Mama’s Boy had great food and a fun atmosphere. It was the perfect way to kick off our sisser weekend!  After our bellies were full, Lisa took us on a driving tour of the campus which we always enjoy.

I was excited to see Lisa as it had been close to two years since we had last seen each others faces.  But we were also excited to be on our way to Helen for a day of German fun and hiking.  We drove on through Helen and took our first hiking stop at Raven Cliffs Falls. It was about 2.5 miles to the main event but the hike was beautiful as it followed along Dodd Creek making the music of the moving water a beautiful song for the long haul.  Being pregnant and taking such a long hike has its downside and there were a few times I wanted to give up and turn around but the falls at the end were worth the hard work and I’m glad we made our way there.

After the falls we headed to our hotel in Helen and we got ready for dinner.  We enjoyed walking around the adorable town as we made our way to dinner.  We found an authentic German hot spot, called Bodensee, and the food was AMAZING!  We had a mushroom appetizer and each had a version of pork schnitzel, ending the meal with an apple strudel.

While Helen is an adorable town, I was disappointed to see how touristy it was.  Where they could really highlight the culture of Germany in each of its adorable store fronts, they really cater more to the kitschy crap that I can find in gas stations and tourist beach shops around the United States.

Day 2 we tried to find a few more hiking spots before heading on to Chattanooga, our next destination.  The first hike we tried to find was called High Shoals Falls trail.  We used google maps to try and find the trailhead and lets just say it took us on a journey.  First we ended up in some strange little neighborhood with no real way out and no way to get to the hike.  Then we found a different route that took us to the hiawasee river.  Apparently it is not uncommon for cars to have to cross said river to get to this hike.  My little Honda Accord was not up for the challenge so we had to give up and turn around!

After our failed attempt we DID find our second hike at Anna Ruby Falls.  This was part of a large state park and the path was completely paved up to the falls.  The downside to this one was that it was an extremely steep hike there making this pregnant lady wish for a back to hop on!  The falls were pretty but we definitely enjoyed our hike from the previous day much more.

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We found another German hot spot for lunch before driving out to Tennessee.  We event got a German donut on the house and left with a pretzel to snack on in the car!

Along the route to Chattanooga we had mapped a few additional hikes to check out.  The first being Helton Creek Falls.  After following google maps along a very rough and tough dirt road, low and behold, we came across another river to cross.  The jeep that was ahead of us would have no trouble crossing the creek bed but again, my poor Honda was not up to the task.  We realized at that point we should have done a little more research when choosing these trails to find as this was apparently a thing.  And maybe I should have brought Britton’s Jeep on the trip despite being more comfortable on the road in my Honda!

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We went through Cherokee National Forest on our way to Chattanooga and were lucky to find one more hike for us to complete.  I had to drive up a mountain side which is at times frightening as I am quite afraid of heights but I am glad we made it to the top so we could enjoy another beautiful hike.  We made our way to Benton Falls trailhead and we were both excited to be out of the car and stretching our legs.  The hike itself was an easy one and not very beautiful compared to Raven Cliff.  But once we made it to the falls, I didn’t care much about the hike.  It was beautiful.  By far, the most beautiful waterfall we had seen.  It was absolutely breathtaking and I am so glad we found another hike we could manage to get to!

That evening we found a hole in the wall BBQ place to grab food to bring back to the hotel. We also found a biscuit place where we picked up some additional sides for our dinner.  We were both pooped and decided on an evening in, pampering ourselves and watching movies.  It was the perfect last evening together.

Day 3 we woke up as early as we could following the time change and got our butts out and on to Ruby Falls for our last activity of the weekend.  I have been there before but I always enjoy the cave tour and underground waterfall so I was excited to go back.  We enjoyed the cool weather underground and enjoyed the stories from our tour guide.

We hoped back in the car to make our way back to Atlanta.  We made a pit stop at some outlets for my sis as that type of shopping experience is hard to come by in the big city.

As we pulled back into the airport chaos I was sad to see the weekend come to a close.  This would be the last Sisser weekend before I become a mom.  Trips like this have become a ritual for us as we try to get together at least twice a year.  It started in Boston for my “bachelorette” weekend.  I’ve been to see her about once a year in New York.  And last year we did a trip in Connecticut.  I know that we will still plan trips and have fun sisser time but come July, I will also always be a mom.  I’m so glad to have my supportive sisser around when I need her and I hope as my life changes, our relationship continues to grow.  ❤ you sisser!

 

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One Response to “North Georgia Road Trip”

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  1. Friday I’m in Love | steelewall - March 18, 2016

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