It was a lovely fall day in Georgia and we felt like getting out of the city.to enjoy a little bit of nature. I’d never been hiking before, and I’m not tired of Piedmont Park yet, but the idea of expansive wilderness was appealing. So we hopped into the car with the dogs and took off.
Forty-five minutes north of Atlanta lies a little enclave of nature that used to house Roswell Mill. Now it’s paths and trees and water, with a little bit of ruins mixed in. Excited at how close it was, we grabbed the dogs and went to explore.
I love the peace and beauty of nature, but I’ll admit that I’ve been pretty urbanized in the last few years of living in Atlanta and Philadelphia. It was a welcome experience to explore nature that isn’t surrounded by city.
We saw some pretty sights.
The weirdest part of hiking for me was that it became somewhat dangerous. The biggest fear living in a city is that someone’s going to mug you or that you’ll be hit by a car on a jog. Nature, it seems, is more dangerous than any of that. At one point, Xavier and I climbed a little hill to explore a rock ledge. From the top, the path seemed very far away. We stopped to take a few photos.
The descent was a little treacherous, especially with the ground covered in slippery leaves. But we made it, only to be confronted with a rocky ledge so steep that this terrified-of-heights girl couldn’t bear to stop and photograph it.
The dogs had a blast, running all over the woods and splashing in the water when they could.
That led to the funniest part of the day. My little Riley had been exploring with the wildness of a city pup finally unleashed. This involved traipsing through creeks and splashing like a mad dog. None of the water was particularly deep, and she grew quite accustomed to making quick dips as we wandered the path. I kept a close eye on my girl, knowing that for all of her enthusiasm she is an urbanite through and through. This proved to be a wise idea, because Riley stepped into water that was well over her head.
She can swim, sure, but she doesn’t often have reason to and being completely submerged was totally shocking to her. She struggled for purchase on the slippery logs that lined the riverbank. Fortunately, we were right there. I managed to snap a blurry photo as Xavier plucked her from the depths by her harness. She looks like a dripping wet rat, full of shame. It makes me laugh so hard.
All’s well that ends well, and she was dry and zipping through the forest just minutes later, leaving us to laugh it off.
I loved hiking, and we’ll certainly be seeking out new locations to explore. Fortunately, Georgia winters are mild enough that good opportunities should present themselves throughout the coming months. I’m looking forward to it!
If you’re in the Atlanta area and want to check out this hiking spot, learn more about the Vickery Creek/Roswell Mill Ruins here.