Waterfalls and Alpine Helen

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Friday 29th July, 5.30pm

Back on the balcony, this time with beer and chips. An easier day today – after yesterday’s tumble we decided to limit the hiking. All the mountain areas we have been in are very proud of their waterfalls. We visited three today, driving in a loop round scenic backroads. Helton Creek Falls is not far from the cabins and these were the least spectacular. Dukes Creek Falls are 300 feet high and beautiful. Anna Ruby Falls (pictured) are unusual because they are double falls – two creeks falling into the same basin, one from about 50 feet and the other from about 125 feet. None of these falls are just off the road so we’ve still done 3-4 miles and a fair bit of descent and ascent so I feel we still deserve the beer.

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We also visited the town of “Alpine” Helen. This sounded intriguing in the guide book, a little bit of Bavaria in Georgia. It was certainly everything I expected, and more – truly tacky! Still, it had a good grocery store, Betty’s, which concealed all mod cons in a log cabin style early 20th century general store ambience. We stocked up our bread supplies there and had a tasty lunch in one of the cafés. The guy playing the oompah music in the centre was authentically dressed on his top half, but I don’t think floral shorts really cut it instead of lederhosen.

11pm. Still up so must be getting used to the mountain air. Microwave Chinese dinners tonight, not a patch on the real thing (including John’s own stir-fries).

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