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Georgia On My Mind, Part 8

During my trip to Georgia in November 2013, I scheduled brunch with my stepdaughter (Kona's daughter), Jiyoung and her family. They live in Atlanta so we decided to meet halfway at a diner in the town of Dahlonega. Northern Georgia does not have an extensive infrastructure of freeways so you generally have a choice of the scenic route or the scenic route. I chose scenic Route 19 (and was glad to have the GPS on my iPhone)

This route travels through the Chattahoochee National Forest. This stop is Mountain Crossings, an outfitter serving hikers who are traversing the Appalachian Trail. The building was built by the Civilian Conservation Corps who started construction in 1934 and finished in 1937 (the same year the Appalachian Trail was completed). Every year Mountain Crossings serves over 2000 hikers on their way to Maine. The staff evaluates over 500 packs each year and ships back over 9000 lbs of gear from the store — hikers tend to carry more gear than they really need so this is an opportunity to lighten their load.

This hiker seemed a bit out of shape — hopefully he will rest a while before continuing to Maine.

Here is the view of Neels Gap from the back of Mountain Crossings. It is a beautiful view even with the haze.

Continuing down Route 19, there were still a few trees with color — this one had both green and red leaves at the same time. Beautiful, but not for long.

A bit further was a park with a number of cabins available for rent — for those who are interested in relaxation or shorter hikes.

Northern Georgia is filled with old structures in various states of decay. I would have loved to photograph more of them but it would have taken all day to get to brunch.

I am still not sure if this was a residence or a business. My guess is business because it looks like it might have been a gas station, perhaps with a general store. Clues? The roof overhang that might have kept the customer out of the rain as they filled their gas tank. The double door entrance. The door to the left front and the side door look like they may have been bathrooms. Last, the front wall extending above the roof — not a common house design. But who knows?

Although I found this in another location, this sign could have been perfect posted on the previous structure.

Route 19 runs along creeks a good part of the way. There are many rapids and small waterfalls demanding to be photographed — and I had to oblige at least once.

Here I pulled off the road to capture what Route 19 looks like most of the way. Quite a pleasant drive, if you are not in a hurry.

Finally, I arrived at Dahlonega and encountered Lake Zwerner formed by the damming of Yahoola Creek. Naturally, it is a recreation area too with fishing, hiking and picnic areas.

Here is the spillway with only a trickle of water flowing down.

This is downstream Yahoola Creek below the dam.

Finally, I arrived at Danny's Restaurant to meet Jiyoung, Jillian, Jake and Brad. Quite a good-looking family. We had a wonderful meal — with plenty of time to catch up. This was our first get-together since Jake was still crawling around in diapers (sorry Jake).

To be continued...

Life is good.

B. David

P. S., All photos and text © B. David Cathell Photography, Inc. — www.bdavidcathell.com