2001: A Cascades Odyssey

Cascades waterfall
Cascades is my favorite SUUSI hike. It is somewhat strenuous, involving walking two miles from a parking area to the falls and two miles back, over a rocky path. But when you get there you see this beautiful waterfall, and in most years, I change to a swimsuit and swim in the water, even though it is only about 62 degrees, a really cold pool. Before we started the walk we noticed some flowers growing by the trail, and some butterflies were attracted to them:
Butterfly Flowers

As we continued up the trail, we noted this old moonshine still from way back when. Now it just sits here, a piece of human machinery in an otherwise natural environment:
Moonshine Still

We continued up the rocky trail. However, when we got there, we saw the effect of recent heavy rains, the ones that caused massive flooding in West Virginia. The water was too high to cross over to the dry area in the stream bed. In previous years, we would go here and start our swim from this area. But this year the water covered a narrow passageway out there, and that made it far too slippery to attempt the crossing. So we all crowded near the northern bank and climbed the stairs. One of us did go by the falls, and I got in just to get wet. So there was not as much fun this year, but the scenery and the falls were just as pretty as before. This is one hike that I will eventually try again.

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