Sunday, May 19, 2013

Blue Ridge, Georgia

My husband Judson and I just returned from a honeymooniversary in a cabin in Blue Ridge. We stayed there for our honeymoon 6 years ago, so this was like another honeymoon. We didn't stay in the same cabin as before. We loved that cabin, Tranquility Ridge, but we were afraid things would have changed, that it would be a disappointment, that we were merely trying to recreate the past. Also, the price had gone up. :) So, we stayed in Running Bear Lodge instead.

I was pleased with our choice. It's a smaller cabin than Tranquility Ridge, but it had still plenty of space. I enjoyed writing at the rustic dining room table. And it had an awesome gas fireplace,  which we made use of the very first night, when we arrived amid a rain storm. Luckily the weather got better, and by the 3rd day it was toasty warm out. The hot tub was in a better location than Tranquility Ridge's--slightly less privacy, being right next to the road, but with a great view of the stars. We were able to float in our bubbly warm bath and watch the shooting stars without being disturbed by anyone.

Our hot tub and fire pit
The cabin is remote. Technically, it's in Cherry Log rather than Blue Ridge. Very few cars come by on the road. It was incredibly quiet, not within shooting distance of any civilization. From our deck, all we could see was mountains. The view was not quite as good as Tranquility Ridge, but that was only because sunset over the mountains was partially blocked by trees.

Our 'bad' view
The birds were excellent. I would wake in the morning to the Wood Thrush's song. I also heard Hooded Warblers, Black-throated Green Warblers, Red-eyed Vireos, Black-and-white Warblers, Ovenbirds, and oh so many Indigo Buntings. Judson was able to get some good shots of these:
Indigo Bunting
We also saw many Scarlet Tanagers, but these were less obliging. All of these birds I had already seen this year on Sharp's Ridge, but it's always nice to see them again. The only new year bird was a Wild Turkey, which we saw on the road up to the cabin.

This trip was also a writing retreat for me. I spent a fair bit of time sleeping, hanging out on the deck or in front of the fire, or soaking in the hot tub, but I also wrote for perhaps 12 hours while Judson read and watched a couple of TV shows. We also went into Blue Ridge for meals twice. I had one of the best meals I had in months at the Blue Ridge Brewery. We shopped a bit; I bought a rug and Judson bought a metal peacock at Rose's. We also bought the requisite fudge, without which no trip to Blue Ridge is complete.

The last time we were in Blue Ridge, we didn't make it out to Lake Blue Ridge. We corrected the mistake this time, and I was really glad we did. Morganton Point is gorgeous. Just sitting there, listening to the lake water lapping against the shore, watching the windfall light, and wondering at the stunning Red-headed Woodpeckers and Brown-headed Nuthatches right out in the open, well, it doesn't get much better.

The next time we go, I think we'll try another new cabin, just for variety. And we'll rent a boat at Lake Blue Ridge.

Red-headed Woodpecker