A Snowy Hike In Brasstown

Snow in cherokee county nc

Yesterday morning we awoke to 6 fresh inches of snow. Once the morning chores were completed, and the greenhouse was removed of its snow we went on a hike.

Hiking in snow


We left via the basement door since all our wet snow clothes from the day before had been drying near the wood stove. Walking out to the backyard we were amazed by the beauty of the newly fallen snow.

Chickens dont like snow


Moving on past the chicken coop into the woods we headed up the ridge. Chickens don’t like snow-at least ours don’t. We could hear them moving around inside, but they didn’t even peek their heads out to see if we had any goodies for them.

Pines dead from beetle


Walking along the side of the ridge out through the pines dead from beetle infestations is always sort of creepy. Most of the biggest trees have already fallen, but a few snaggy looking ones are still standing like silent ghosts.

2015 february snow hike up the creek


Once we came down off the end of the ridge the walking was much easier…

Breathtaking snow


and the views were breathtaking.

Wet weather spring


I pointed out the wet weather spring to the girls and reminded them it would only be a couple months till it was swimming with tadpoles.

Stamey Branch


A couple more yards and we could see the Stamey Branch cutting a cold black swath through all the white.

Carrying across the creek


Ever the gentleman, The Deer Hunter gave us all a piggyback ride across the creek to keep our toes dry. Reminds me of the times I rode on Pap’s back as a girl.

Big snow in western nc


The snow had adhered itself to every surface no matter how rough, leafy, or slender.

The snowy crossroads


When we came to the fork in the trail we had to decide whether we wanted to circle back around towards home or continue on up the creek. I said, “Well I have been wanting to go to the tree with the carvings on it.” The Deer Hunter said, “Uh I don’t think so. Do you know how far that is?”

I think he was getting tired of clearing the snow laden limbs for us girls. So we took the fork that would circle back towards Wilson Holler and home.

Quiet in the snowy woods


The woods were unbelievably quiet. I kept hoping we’d see some tracks like we did back in 2010 on a snowy hike.

Horse play in the snow


Of course, the quiet was often disrupted by these two horsing around.

Downed tree in snow what treasures are in its roots


A big tree had been uprooted since the last time we’d been through the area. We all stopped to examine the red clay wall that shown brightly against the white.

Every time I see a root system up and close like this I hope I’ll find some kind of treasure that’s been hidden for hundreds of years.

Eating snow for moisture


All the walking made us thirsty, and we took advantage of the snow-covered limbs on several occasions. At least the girls and I did, I think The Deer Hunter was smarter than us and brought his thermos full of water.

Mountains in Brasstown


The snow was so pretty and the company was good, which made for a very satisfying hike.

The hastily made photo map above shows the territory we were walking in. We stayed away from the high tops and our trail wound closer into the valley were the Stamey Branch gurgles along towards Brasstown and beyond.



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  • Reply
    Rev. RB
    February 28, 2015 at 11:38 pm

    Beautiful!!! Reminds me of a long long walk I took through the woods near Tionesta, PA long ago. The snow was clean and unsullied by tracks or footprints, and though it was cold, it wasn’t the kind of cold that goes right through your clothes, and it made for a very pleasant hike.
    God bless.

  • Reply
    C. Ron Perry, Sr.
    February 28, 2015 at 12:08 am

    Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
    By Robert Frost
    Whose woods these are I think I know.
    His house is in the village though;
    He will not see me stopping here
    To watch his woods fill up with snow.
    My little horse must think it queer
    To stop without a farmhouse near
    Between the woods and frozen lake
    The darkest evening of the year.
    He gives his harness bells a shake
    To ask if there is some mistake.
    The only other sound’s the sweep
    Of easy wind and downy flake.
    The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
    But I have promises to keep,
    And miles to go before I sleep,
    And miles to go before I sleep.
    Robert Frost, “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” from The Poetry of Robert Frost, edited by Edward Connery Lathem. Copyright 1923, © 1969 by Henry Holt and Company, Inc., renewed 1951, by Robert Frost. Reprinted with the permission of Henry Holt and Company, LLC.
    Source: Collected Poems, Prose, & Plays (Library of America, 1995)

  • Reply
    Pat D
    February 27, 2015 at 10:23 pm

    Thanks for the wonderful pictures.
    We got almost 5 inches here in West Texas. But we only have flat land, not many trees and the only water are playa lakes for water run off. You live in a beautiful part of our country, with the trees and water, but I guess God gave me a beautiful place to live too. Our country has many beautiful places, all different and all given to us by God to enjoy… Love all your pictures and stories… Thanks.

  • Reply
    February 27, 2015 at 8:01 pm

    BEAUTIFUL pictures, Tipper! I’m glad you all are enjoying your snow, at last 🙂
    I also always think tip-up mounds may be holding a treasure, now revealed…haven’t found any gems or trinkets yet, though. Maybe next time! Meanwhile I just enjoy the marvel of the roots that have grown and explored and nourished and held an entire tree connected to the earth. Amazing.

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    February 27, 2015 at 7:34 pm

    I made like the chickens and peeped out the window at first.
    Dusty got on his dirt bike and rode down the power line. I wanted to go to Little Caesars and get a deep dish bacon wrapped pizza but by the time he got back the snow has almost gone off the road. That took away the challenge. I have never seen that much snow melt away that quick. We still have snow on the ground but it was gone from the roads by 2:00 PM yesterday. I think the salt and brine from the first snow cleared the roads. Burke County had school today but were on a three hour delay.

  • Reply
    February 27, 2015 at 4:12 pm

    I love those beautiful pictures
    of you all hiking up the trail in
    all that snow.
    When I was young, we use to ride
    a sled out of our holler. We’d
    stack 5 high sometimes, laying on
    the sled. We lost usually three
    before the second curve, but we
    never thought a thing of having
    to pull the sled back up the
    hill, about 1/8th of a mile.
    Almost at the end of our ride,
    we’d drag our toes and it’d still
    jump the Railroad. Those were
    nice memories…Ken

  • Reply
    February 27, 2015 at 2:50 pm

    Thanks for sharing a lovely walk in the woods.
    I have to call it a “walk” because hubby turns every hike into a race to the finish even when the finish is unknown. If I say I’m taking a walk, he knows I’m going to be pausing to take in the scenery – and he doesn’t go.
    FYI – when I first saw the “wet weather spring” I wondered, “Why in the world did Tipper take a picture of a dead squirrel!?”

  • Reply
    David Templeton
    February 27, 2015 at 2:45 pm

    Thank you for taking us along, Tipper. Beautiful walk, made real with the wonderful picturing. I was in the woods earlier this week but I had to cut it short because of the subzero wind-chilled air. It’s easy to identify the common tracks of deer and rabbits and squirrels but I found many tracks that I believe were of a bob cat. They aren’t easily seen here but in snow we can see they’re still around.
    As with your many other readers, I really enjoyed the hike with you’all. Don’t I remember pictures of the girls, oh, they were probably just 11 or 12, playing in that branch?

  • Reply
    Wanda Devers
    February 27, 2015 at 1:41 pm

    Beautiful snow–what we’ve had wasn’t nearly so fluffy. My brothers take a traditional trek through the snow but I’m a sissy & never joined them.

  • Reply
    February 27, 2015 at 12:35 pm

    Thanks! I really enjoyed the hike!

  • Reply
    February 27, 2015 at 10:13 am

    I really enjoyed your story and family time. I only remember one time trapsing through the mountains in the spring while counseling a group of second graders through Stokes State Forest. It snowed over night, but the hike was planned. No one slipped into the stream while crossing it, that is, except one – me. I was so wet. I slipped on the snow on a rock. Oh, well! Thanks for sharing such a beautiful family time. Scrap book time!

  • Reply
    Henry Horton
    February 27, 2015 at 10:08 am

    It was so beautiful…and this born agin country boy had not seen the likes in decades. 5 1/2 in. here in Macon Co. Loved your pix…i had my own hikes and did see critter tracks including one that decided to go through the long way o the pond???!!! Brrrrr!

  • Reply
    February 27, 2015 at 10:04 am

    Hi Tipper,Thank you for the beautiful mental walk this morning,didn’t need my footsy moble,walker!God Bless

  • Reply
    Ron Banks
    February 27, 2015 at 10:02 am

    We had 5 inches here at the bottom of Oglethorpe mountain. It was a beautiful snow and the weather was just right to get out and enjoy it. We rode the sleds, built a couple of snowmen and walked in the woods. After that we had hot cocoa and put together a jigsaw puzzle. A fine day indeed! Thanks for sharing your hike with us Tipper.

  • Reply
    Melissa P (Misplaced Southerner)
    February 27, 2015 at 9:39 am

    Lovely photos and great commentary. Sure is pretty when it’s fresh. Must admit we’re getting more than a little sick of snow and WAY below zero temperatures up here in Michigan. I do love the intense quiet of a new snow, though – even still.
    BTW, chickens don’t like snow up here, either!

  • Reply
    February 27, 2015 at 9:33 am

    There is nothing more peaceful than being out in the woods after a fresh snowfall. I used to go out alone and look for wildlife tracks. When I headed back home, I always wrote “Caution, children at play” in the snow along the bank by the road.
    Your pictures are beautiful!

  • Reply
    Pamela Danner
    February 27, 2015 at 9:15 am

    Loved seeing your beautiful hike through the snow. I posted photos of the snow at our house and wish I could have gone out hiking too but, unfortunately I have been sick for about two weeks so I missed all the fun. We did get some fresh snow to make snow cream.

  • Reply
    February 27, 2015 at 8:41 am

    I’m not going to say I envy your walk, it’s not Christian. Okay okay I envy your hikes, there I said it.

  • Reply
    February 27, 2015 at 8:28 am

    Thanks for taking us with you on that beautiful hike in the snow!

  • Reply
    February 27, 2015 at 8:27 am

    Beautiful! Thank you for letting us take this little hike with you. I found these sort of treks really help your body in learning how to keep its balance. I have wonderful balance after all these years, and is attributed to walking in snow in those old slick galoshes many years ago. There was no tread on them. I have not enjoyed a walk in the woods in the snow for many years.
    There can not be anything more enjoyable than spending time like this with your family. The pictures tell it all. Your girls are being given such a strong foundation on which to build their future.

  • Reply
    Sue Crane
    February 27, 2015 at 8:15 am

    well, sweetie, you got your snow!!!!

  • Reply
    February 27, 2015 at 8:11 am

    Your pictures are beautiful. It was the prettiest snow I can remember seeing. I got up yesterday morning and took a few pictures from my porch, because it was too deep for Carter to be walking in. When she got up I showed her out the window and she “Oh, boooootiful.”

  • Reply
    Mike McLain
    February 27, 2015 at 7:55 am

    Thank you for the pictures, Tipper. Looks like it was fun. I did a hike by myself yesterday morning on the new snow. I enjoy being the first critter to put down prints and going solo makes the woods incredibly quiet.

  • Reply
    Jim Casada
    February 27, 2015 at 7:47 am

    Quiet woods? With Chitter and Chatter on the trail? Check out those girls tonsils and vocal chords. Something’s surely wrong if there were moments of silence.
    Jim Casada

  • Reply
    Paula Rhodarmer
    February 27, 2015 at 7:33 am

    Hi Tipper,
    Looks like such fun! The pictures are beautiful.

  • Reply
    Dan O'Connor
    February 27, 2015 at 7:31 am

    Nothing prettier and as serene as a winter hike, beautiful pictures!

  • Reply
    Ethelene Dyer Jones
    February 27, 2015 at 7:30 am

    What a beautifully illustrated hike, replete with your poetic description, the togetherness of a loving family out on a snowy jaunt through serene woods, and the beauty of nature covered with the pristine whiteness of a heavy snow! Extraordinary! Thanks so much for sharing! We were able to walk with you and enjoy the beauty, too!

  • Reply
    Cheryl Soehl
    February 27, 2015 at 7:21 am

    Thanks for the tour, Tipper! It looks lovely. Many years ago, when I was living in New York City, there was a great blizzard. As I walked along First Avenue, the drifts were well over my head (yes, I am rather short, only 5″ 1/2″), and the silence was complete. Imagine the city as quiet as your woods under snow. That was a once in a lifetime experience.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    February 27, 2015 at 7:21 am

    Wow! I am so impressed with you all getting out and hiking in the snow. Yesterdays snow was a beautiful one. The big soft flakes make for a beautiful blanket that also does a fine job of sound proofing. All the sounds you make stay near you instead of traveling through the trees and out to the blue yonder.
    What a fine day you had.

  • Reply
    Barb Wright
    February 27, 2015 at 7:16 am

    Oh,how pretty!! We hike like that when snow first falls(usually November),but not now..we all grow tired of it. Your trail looks much like our sugarbush. Hopefully,it will warm up soon so we can actually get busy in there! Have fun with your snow..and your family!!

  • Reply
    Roy Pipes
    February 27, 2015 at 7:14 am

    A beautiful walk. Donald Trump has never enjoyed such magnificent and peaceful scenery.

  • Reply
    b. Ruth
    February 27, 2015 at 6:34 am

    Oh, what I would have give to have been dressed in that (Boston guy’s) YETI costume, hiding behind that big uprooted tree!
    Of course, I would’ve had to let Deer Hunter in on the joke, since he was carrying the gun and probably has quick response and protective instincts….
    Beautiful pictures Tipper…
    I can’t believe you didn’t see any tracks of any critter or varmint!
    Thanks Tipper,
    PS…Are you sure that wet weather spot ain’t from a ‘painter squat!

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