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Friday, October 10, 2008

Skyline Drive Camping In October

Last weekend neighbor Dave and I camped on top of Skyline Drive. The weather was cool and fall colors are starting to appear. We stayed at Loft Mountain where all 220 campsites were occupied. It is amazing how peaceful a mountaintop can be with so many campers.

The Appalachian Trail wraps around the campsite offering easy access to stunning views. This photo was taken in the morning where the low sunlight created scenes that were alive with color.

These helpful trail markers were found at various intersections. We don't see these on trail sections in Loudoun County. They tend to be wooden signs in our area.

We did not see bears during our trip, but their presence was evident. At some point during our stay we noticed a large apple tree bordering our campsite. The base of the tree was dotted with biological remnants (a nice way of saying poo) of deer and bear. "...protect your property?" I had no idea bears were thieves, food I can understand.

After years of attempting to get closeup photos of deer, my goal was met this weekend. Dave and I were hiking along the trail and two bucks casually approached us on their morning stroll. The smaller of the two walked within two feet of us, as if we were not there. The second, larger buck (seen here) milled within ten feet of us for about five minutes. I assume they had no fear because hunting is not permitted in this location. Here in Loudoun, getting within fifty yards is rare.

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