As you may recall, Ellie has already been to a pretty cool waterfall, Great Falls, just after the big hurricane rolled through. So it was inevitable that the next trip to a waterfall would be much less dramatic. Until we saw a deer AND a bear in the same hike!
We went up to White Oak Canyon, in Shenandoah National Park. It's one of the "easier" hikes around, but the tough part is that you hike down to the falls, and hike up to get back to the parking lot. This can make it a pretty deceiving hike. Anyway, it was a perfect time to try out the Kelty backpack we got to carry her around in, and it was such a nice cool day, we had to get out and do it.
About 10 minutes into the trip, we had our first bear sighting. He was a little guy, so we had to beware for the mother, but he paid us no mind, and we walked on by, being as loud as possible (you don't want to spook the bears, so the theory goes).
That black thing just over that guy's right shoulder is the bear (or his behind). He never once stuck his head up to take a look at us. Probably a good thing. He was amazingly close to the trail. Usually you only get to see them off in the distance, but this guy was oblivious. He was maybe 75 feet away, if that.
About 15 minutes more down the path, and we saw a deer off in the trees. Again, pretty close to the trail, amazing! The deer wasn't even spooked by Max.
No other wildlife the rest of the hike though. Still, the falls were going pretty good, and we had a nice lunch at the overlook.
Lisa and Ellie with the falls in the background.
Full falls shot. They cascade down about 85 feet, I believe.
Ellie is going to be a rock climber. We set her down on the rocks at the overlook, expecting her to crawl around in the dirt, but instead, she started finding handholds in the slanted rocks and climbed all the way up to where I was sitting! It'll be a while before she tackles something like this cliff though.