Where were we? Oh, yes, plans. We now had plans for the rest of our vacation, thanks to that roadside map and some Google searching. Our first stop on day two was down the road to Anna Ruby Falls just outside of Unicoi State Park. Tailored to tourists, this would be the most “user-friendly” of the waterfalls we would visit.
Anna Ruby Falls consists of two waterfalls from two separate streams, Curtis Creek with a drop of 153 feet, and York Creek with a drop of 50 feet. They join at the base of the waterfalls to form Smith Creek, which flows into Unicoi Lake, less than 2 miles from our cabin. The 1/2-mile paved path to walk up the mountain is alongside Smith Creek, and quite lovely. At the base of the waterfall is the Smith Creek Trail, a 5-mile hike (each way) along the side of the mountain that will take you to Unicoi Lake. We walked the trail for about a mile, but then the terrain got a bit unsteady (read: I was a scaredy-cat and paranoid about the boys falling off the edge), so we walked back to the start of the trail, and back to the car.
At this point it was just past 3 in the afternoon, so it was time to find some lunch. A local we met the day before had mentioned the next town over, Hiawassee, as having a great little restaurant named Michaelee’s Chocolate Caffe, so we decided to find it. We are so glad we did, it was So. Good. So Good that the details of our meal requires its own post.
We soon discovered that the Georgia/North Carolina border was just five minutes away, so after our meal we drove the four miles or so into the next state. We stopped about a mile into North Carolina at the Chatuge Cove Marina to take pictures of the breathtaking view of the Blue Ridge Mountains with Chatuge Lake in the foreground. We weren’t there long though, we were still apprehensive about driving at night along those dim roads. So off we went back to Georgia and to our cabin. Good thing we did. Dusk was approaching, and shortly after passing the Unicoi Park entrance, we saw wild turkeys and deer near the side of the road. We got out of the car and watched them for a while, our first sign of wildlife (save for a few squirrels and birds). Then back to the cabin we went, looking forward to the next day of adventures that lay ahead.
For Part 1, click here.
For Part 3, click here.