I’m supposed to be preparing for our Junior camping trip to Hunting Island State Park right now and finishing up plans for our troop’s Cherokee, NC trip in May, but instead I’m taking a break (a.k.a. procrastinating) to post about Big Boy Mountain in the spring!
This past weekend, our council held the long overdue and postponed leader weekend known as Mountain Magic. Supposedly it was a huge event before the merger, but since I started as a volunteer, it’s either been cancelled or barely made numbers to even make it:
- 2011: Attended!
- 2012: Technically didn’t happen due to 2012 Centennial Event but said event was cancelled too!
- 2013: Attended!
- 2014: Cancelled!
- 2015: Rescheduled due to floods!
I was determined to try to go during the rescheduled date (if it wasn’t cancelled, of course). But it turned out three of my favorite things were all happening the same weekend – my church’s annual retreat, an orchestra performance (I play bassoon), and the rescheduled Mountain Magic. What to do? I had already made a commitment to the orchestra back in the fall, so the church retreat was out. At 7am on Saturday morning, I made the hour drive up to Camp WaBak, stayed until 1:30pm, drove back to Fountain Inn for a 3pm rehearsal and the concert at 7:30pm, and then drove back up to WaBak at 7am on Sunday morning and stayed for the rest of the day. It was crazy but well worth the driving time. Bummer that I didn’t have Hermione’s Time-Turner so that I could attend all three events.
When I first got my schedule Saturday morning, I was disappointed that the Big Boy hike was no longer on so I volunteered to lead one. Sunday morning, I asked everybody at breakfast who wanted to go on a hike with me up to the top of Big Boy Mountain. Everybody raised their hands and cheered enthusiastically! Just kidding. Nobody did and you could hear a pin drop. So I made my sad puppy dog face, and finally someone felt sorry for me and said she’d go. We’ll call her DB. I told her it was a difficult hike and asked if she was okay with climbing 300 feet in less than a mile? She said yes, so off we went! Later on, I realized my math was bad and really we were climbing almost 800 feet, but I didn’t bring that up until we were over halfway to the top. Oops, sorry DB!
This was my fourth time climbing Big Boy, but it’s always been in the fall. So what’s it like in the spring? Beautiful! I’m still a little partial to Fall, but I was really curious to see if Big Boy had any wildflowers in store. And it did! Click of any of the pictures for a larger view.
I also saw a few Bloodroots and some Wild Ginger. There’s a Beautyberry halfway between where the really steep part begins and the top, but it doesn’t bloom during the spring. There’s also a ton of Running-pine (or running cedar) near the bottom. And of course, the obligatory poison ivy.
Here’s another one that I spotted right before you walk out onto the rock cliff. I’m guessing maybe Roundleaf Ragwort right before it blooms? I realize it’s not in focus.
Even with my miscalculation, DB was a good sport and hopefully enjoyed my company. We got to the top! Like I say every time, I’ll never get tired of this view:
DB pointed out that you could see Paris Mountain and downtown Greenville! I had noticed Paris Mountain before (BTW, a PM hike write-up will be coming soon), but not downtown Greenville! This picture doesn’t do it justice whatsoever: