I got there around 11:00 and drove around, trying to get my bearings and figure out where everything was. I decided that I'd start my hiking at the end of the nature trail where the falls are and work my way back. I did that for a while but I kept noticing that there was something going on over across the falls. Another trail! So I walked across the bridge to see what was over there. I ended up at the end of that one, where the old gristmill is. It was about 1:30 then and I was getting hungry so I started trying to find a place to eat. There are a couple of restaurants nearby but one didn't open until 4:00 (of course that one was the one with the fried catfish!) but the other one, a TRUE barbecue joint, was open. It's High Falls Barbecue and Beverage and if you're ever in the neighborhood, stop and get you a sammich! They give you enough of the juiciest pulled pork barbecue for TWO sandwiches and they have a dozen different sauces to pick from. It's really reasonable, too!
After lunch, I went back to the park and walked the 2.5 mile nature trail again, starting at the beginning and ending at the falls. There were a few folks here and there on the trail but for the most part, it was me and God and it was nice. I was so awestruck many times by the things I saw, the things I touched and smelled. I kept hearing the roar of the falls getting louder and louder so I knew I was getting close to the end so I slowed down and took in everything around me, like this pretty little mushroom just as content as it can be growing in that carpet of soft green moss.
I ended up hiking five miles on the two trails and it was absolutely exhilarating!! I was hot and sweaty but I wasn't tired. Six months ago, I would not have even tried this. My ankle would have been lookin' at me all wild-eyed and crazy. But today was perfect. I did it. I walked up hills, down hills, over roots, through mud and over little streams. And it was amazing!!!