Dolly Sods has long been my favorite spot in West Virginia, but even so, this fall was my first time camping at Red Creek. The guys made the great sacrifice of driving out early Friday morning to snag our spots, securing themselves a little kid-free beer drinking time and allowing the rest of us to swoop in after dark and avoid the task of camp setup. Win-win.
There's something about seeing a tundra-like landscape where you don't expect it. It's surprising and beautiful and such a lovely respite. I need these times of seeing our state only for the beauty it has to offer and not for the heart-wrenching sadness that often pervades.
After the soft morning light came these clouds hanging low over the Allegheny Front under a crisp blue sky. Nothing short of exhilarating.
As only kids can, these guys had the most fun at Bear Rocks playing in the little ephemeral puddles that had formed in the many rock craters.
We only managed a few short hikes with seven rascals in tow, but the rest of the time they ran non-stop, making their own forest adventures and leaving us to relax in a way you can only achieve when you're outside with good friends, no cell service, and nothing to do but drink beer and enjoy each other's company.
This is the pre-sunrise shot from Sunday morning, which I got because I could not deny the child who said from outside our tent, "Mom, are you going to miss the day break again?" No. No I am not. And I'm so thankful I got to sit out on the rocks in the blowing wind with that little boy, waiting for the sun.