Spring in the Appalachians …

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Back in mid-April …

Spring is splendid in the Appalachians, but the dogwoods definitely steal the show. Here is some more dogwood porn, shot at the North Carolina Arboretum, in Asheville, NC …

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And some non-dogwood nature porn …

The day before, I headed out of Georgia and crossed into a corner of South Carolina, then into North Carolina. Here are the signs to prove it …

Toward evening, I headed into Pisgua National Forest and headed up a lonely mountain road till I found a place to pull off …

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A short hike in …

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Ah, perfect spot to pitch a tent …

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I wound up staying here three nights. It rained most of the time, but that was only a minor inconvenience compared to the rewards. On my last morning there, I caught nature at its best ….

Check out the bent trees below, seeking light, growing toward a break in the canopy …

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As for this trail …

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I encountered a cyclist, minus her cycle, on this trail, backtracking to find something that had fallen off her bike. She was very attractive, with flowing blond hair, about 55, her pink biking spandex doing justice to her athletic figure. Something about her life force drew me to her, and we wound up talking for the better part of an hour. Somewhere into the conversation, she revealed her true age – 75.

Knock me over with a feather. Okay, a lot of it has to do with genes, plus a lot of luck. But we also have to consider where we met: I did not exactly run into her walking out of Hometown Buffet. Another life lesson learned …

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