Saturday, November 19, 2016

South River Falls Loop

I was still in a hiking mood after I got back from Arizona, so the next week Mark and I went up to Shenandoah to hike the South River Falls Loop. We had done this hike a few years ago and it was pretty neat, so we decided to check it out again with the leaves changing.

Some of the trees had already lost their leaves, but others still had a lot of great color.

The hike is a 3.3 mile loop with an optional extra part at the bottom. We figured we'd start with the regular trail first, then decide later how ambitious we felt.

This guy was hanging out on a rock on the side of the trail.

For the most part, the trail stays in the trees, but every once in a while you could see the surrounding ridges.

After a little while we made it to the waterfall overlook. You can just see the waterfall on the lower left side of the picture. I had forgotten to swap filters on my camera, hence the super bright light. Oops.

Some of these trees had some really nice leaves. We decided to follow the extra part of the trail to see what it was like.

It got pretty steep for a little while...

...but we eventually wound up right at the base of the waterfall.

We climbed around on the rocks for a bit to check out the falls. It was pretty neat to have the whole thing to ourselves! I took a few more pictures, then we started to make our way back up to the main trail.

At one point we heard rustling in the leaves on the side of the trail. There was a tiny mouse running around! We stopped to watch it for a couple minutes before continuing on.

 It was getting closer to the end of the day, and the light coming through the trees looked really neat.

What the pictures don't show is that the way back felt almost entirely uphill. What a workout! I was beat by the end of the hike.

We stopped at a couple overlooks on the way out to check out the fall colors. Visibility was fantastic!

Some of the trees had already lost their leaves, but there were still a few spots of color here and there. At any rate, it had been a nice day of hiking!

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