With the frost in the air Timothy and I decided that an extra layer sounded like a great idea. We started off hiking down the old Historic Highway trail. There were some fresh rocks from the winter storms that still resided on the old road.
Upon reaching Ruckel Creek we took a trail part way before venturing off-trail. By this point we were starting to realize the extra layer wasn't needed. Didn't take long before we started the difficult part. Walking across matted down frozen grass wasn't very appealing however Timothy was nice enough to hold my hand. Continuing on here and there we able followed old game trails through the bushes.
After a bit of work we got to Middle Ruckel Creek Falls and took in the view. This made number forty-four for the year, same as last year however we didn't get to it until April 22nd back then.
|#44 Middle Ruckel Creek Falls (bushwhack ~ difficult access)|
The next part wasn't much fun. In fact it was the main factor as to why we tried to take a different way back last year, although that didn't pan out so well. There is a tiny ledge you can walk across, but I shudder every time I think about doing it. One wrong step and you go down sliding or rolling on top of rocks all the way to the bottom. Definitely isn't a place to be a showoff. Timothy was quite the gentleman and walked me through it step by step as I trembled along.
I was quite glad when we got past that part. Pursuing on we continued through the bushes until we finally reached Upper Ruckel Creek Falls. Again this made number forty-five just like last year. Somehow we managed to find a chipmunk to take a picture of us.
After taking in the moment we turned to head back to the road. Looking down I caught a glimpse of the log we used last year to cross before we mistakenly went up a nearly vertical hillside 1800 feet straight up to the official trail.
Knowing this we went back to the tiny rock ledge, with my insides grumbling all the way. Thankfully, Timothy managed to get me down in one piece and we carefully worked together to navigated the muddy chute. Onward we went and I grabbed a picture of Timothy as he climbed up towards a seasonal fall to pick up a water bottle dropped by some other explorer.
Back across the matted grass, the frost had melted by now however I still didn't like the view. Pretty much it's a big slide to the top of trees.
Pressing on we got to the next downward trickiness. Wasn't very exciting trying not to slide out on this one as well. Although at least this slide had things I could grab onto.
Eventually we got to Mossy Grotto Falls, even though it's smaller the area was quite serene.
|#46 Mossy Grotto Falls (bushwhack ~ moderate access)|
|#47 Ruckel Creek Falls (off-trail ~ easy access)|