Posted by: Jim E | October 9, 2011

Fall…Maumelle Park…Two Rivers Park…And Pinnacle Mountain State Park….

All this, in one beautiful Sunday afternoon…we woke up to another wonderful day…frankly, any day I wake up is pretty good!!!…I always say when asked, “How are you today?”…my comment, “Upright and breathing…can’t beat that.”…it just changes the whole predictable conversation to the question…from answering some inane remark like “fine” or something else…knowing all along that they probably don’t really care “how you are”…so the “upright and breathing” helps to make the conversation “go on” from there…

So today started wonderfully…by the time we went to church, the early service…the sun was fully up…the sky was blue, as blue as it gets here in Little Rock…(not quite as blue as Minnesota or Canada…but non-the-less, a beautiful blue…and so the “feeling” started there…when we got in the car…you know what I mean…it started with, “we won’t be fixing dinner/lunch at our house today”…it is too nice to fix something…and too nice to eat in the house…so on the way home, we talked…what are we going to do…so Jeremy picked his favorite spot…a Mexican restaurant, but it was inside…so okay, that was fine…when we left, I turned left…home was “right”…but I turned left…in my mind, I said, “A round about way home”…it took us…to three spots…all beautiful…all just a few short miles from home…not quite a “road trip”…that is at least an hour away…so not a road trip…but a great break away from the normal…and a little dreaming along the way…

First, we went along a curving, tree-filled road that twisted toward “Two Rivers Park”…now, a little explanation…there are no “straight” roads in Little Rock….or near Little Rock…with so many mountains and hills and valleys…all roads twist and turn…you can’t take your eyes off the road, because in the next few feet, it will go left or right or up or down…it is amazing…especially when we came from the “flatland”…where most roads are in a straight line or close to it…and trees…Little Rock is covered with trees…a gazillion of them…so we took “that” road, it’s any road…but we took that one…and it lead us to Two Rivers Park…(two rivers, the Little Maumelle and the Arkansas Rivers meet)…the park is very new…bike lanes on both side of the road to get there…the bike trail goes from downtown Little Rock along the Arkansas River and to Pinnacle Mountain State Park…its the first time we have been there since the walking/biking bridge has been finished…and although the bridge connects all the other parts of the park…there are all kinds of biking trails before you get to the bridge…so no need to go further unless you want that experience…

From there we found our way back to the twisting and winding road…and ended up driving through Maumelle Park…a huge park…right along the Arkansas River…it is full of trees, picnic areas and campsites…there were a few tents but lots of RV’s…from all over…we stopped at one from South Dakota…they were retired, had been for 11 years…and they have been in an RV all those years…now that takes guts or courage…whichever you like…to spend your life in a house on wheels, no matter how nice it is, takes a bit of courage…and independence…Maumelle is a beautiful park…lots of people from Arkansas…there were church groups and large family groups there…it was buzzing on a Sunday afternoon…in the low 80’s and low humidity, which is pretty normal for October in Arkansas…we drove through the park slowly…looking at all the campers and day campers…and remembering all the time we spent camping in our younger years…and how much we loved it…Little Rock is a small city…and this park, like Two Rivers, is right outside of the city…but so close it only takes a few minutes to get there…so it is well developed and used by people here…and from other states as well…we saw lots of people from Texas…what a place to camp for a few days or longer…the river is right next to your camper…fishing or just reading a book and looking at the river looks like great medicine for the soul…

After spending some time in the park…we drove out to that winding road…took a right this time…we are on Pinnacle Mountain Road now…and soon we came to Pinnacle Mountain State Park…it is still a beautiful drive…trees and the rolling and curving hills makes for an enjoyable afternoon ride…now Pinnacle Mountain is in view…it is the highest mountain in this area…1000 feet…so not very high…but great to climb and hike…we can see people on the very top…the mountain is tree covered except for the top…it is very rocky…and you can see people waving from there…they are “small” but you can make them out…it is a popular park…like all of the parks I have mentioned…right in Little Rock…so easy to get to…I’ll put in a picture from the top so you can see the beauty from up there…our trees are just starting to turn colors now…but will not be at peak until the first of November…so the colors will get better as time goes on…there are trails that go up to the top…those lots younger than I can run up to the top…at least on the “easy” trail…there are more difficult ways to get to the top…I, though, take neither…I will settle for pictures…

All in all, we had a wonderful afternoon…we visited three beautiful places…we remembered, we experienced, we frankly followed the “Feeling” that we had this morning…with a little dreaming along the way…does that happen to you???…and do you sometime follow that “Feeling”…and then after were glad you did???…well,  after writing this…I think I will follow another feeling I have…that being to go fix a cup of coffee and sit on the porch with my lovely wife and enjoy the rest of this perfect day…how about that???…and how about you???…

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