Your Guide for Ski and Snowboarding in the Southeast United States

Snowboarding in the Southeast

For those of us who aren’t familiar with the sound of snow in the south and don’t know the ski and snowboard culture, this blog is going to give you all the “need to know” information about your first ski trip in the south.

It may be a surprise to many people about skiing in the southeast.  However, there is a large ski and snowboard culture that has thousands of people flocking to the mountains in Tennessee and North Carolina.

The community is filled with people of all skill levels from expert skiers, who live in the south and use the mountains as a well to stay fresh on the board for their vacations to Colorado, Alaska, or even the Swiss Alps and first time snowboarders who haven’t been on snow in their entire life.

The ski/snowboarding community is very large and due to a limited number of ski resorts you can expect tons of people at the resorts during the weekend (first tip: try to plan your trip on a week day if possible!)

Planning your trip to the Ski Resort

A southerner would know that weather in the southeast is crazy.  Some days in January, it could be 10 degrees and the next be 65 and sadly this isn’t an exaggeration.  A parallel to snowboarding and skiing in the southeast is like big wave surfing.  To catch a perfect weekend of snowboarding, you need to be very flexible and try to find cold weather patterns.   This is almost impossible to predict; however, not being aware of the weather before arriving at the ski resort could leave you very disappointed.  If possible, I would plan your ski trip a week or less out to truly have a good idea of what the current conditions are and whether it’s worth spending your money.

Snow Conditions

Snow conditions are an interesting topic.  I went snowboarding twice and two back to back weeks and my experience was completely different each time.   The first weekend, I went the temperate varied during the day from 29 degrees to 35 degrees so above and below freezing later.  The conditions were horrendous.  Only one blue trail was open and the snow was a glandular texture that looks like marble size balls of ice.  This trail had snow blowing; however the snow underneath the new layer of “snow” was pure ice.   This day was overall very sketchy and I saw 4 people get carted off the mountain that day and heard news from people on the lift that the day before was equally dangerous.  A day like this was not too fun and mostly kept me frustrated not to mention the blowers on the lower part of the mountain were blowing almost pure water.  The next weekend, I went back to a different ski resort in the same city and the conditions were firing off, the conditions were prime.   The resort was dumped with 3 feet of powder in some spots.  Plus, the snow quality being blown was as fine as saw dust and had a powder-like texture to it. I kept overhearing people on the lift saying how this reminded them of some of their best trips in Colorado.  There were parts of the slope that I stood up in that were knee deep of powder.  Overall, this was one of the best days of snowboarding I have ever had myself; however, it was absolutely freezing 3 degrees to 9 degrees was the variance on the hottest part of the day.

Needless to say snowboarding and skiing in the southeast is a gamble – sometimes it pays off other times it does not work out as planned.

Money and Rental Gear

After reading about the knee-deep conditions, you might be thinking you can’t wait to head to the slopes.  You might also be wondering what are the costs to go and have an awesome day like this?  Well, ski lift tickets generally run you around $75 dollars on holidays and weekends no matter how good or bad the conditions.  You might be wondering if ski resorts will charge the same price for the terrible conditions, the answer is yes and it kind of sucks.  However, these resorts need to pay the repair and maintenance on the lifts, electricity and in this case, the snow bill because of how much snow is needed to be blown in for the season.

I would budget some cash for your lunch and dinner if you plan on riding all day and night.  The prices for the average cafeteria fast food style meals are very pricy and will make you feel robbed when you are finished.  Sadly, this is just part of the experience.

So you have booked your trip and you have your budget saved for an awesome weekend on the mountain; however, you realize you don’t have skis, snowboards, helmets and boots.  Well lucky for you, there are plenty of rentals on and off the mountain (non ski resort owned rental shops).  These shops normally charge around $40 to $60 a day for all of your gear rentals.

The rentals are a decent price; however, be picky with your gear (on or off mountain rentals/ waxing)

What to wear?

To enjoy the snow and mountains, it is best to have the proper gear!  There are plenty of expensive and inexpensive ski options.  The essential gear required to go to the mountains are: ski jacket, ski pants, wool/synesthetic socks, beanie, helmet, goggles/sun glasses, gloves/mittens (an extra thin pair to go underneath is my tip to extra warm hands), and base layers.

A key tip is to dress in layers rather in bulky items.  Try wearing base layers such as synthetic long underwear and shirt will make a difference.

**What not to do though is overdress which will lead to sweating.  Sweating will cause you to become very cold.  You will see an issue with this especially when you enter the lodge for the break.  You will become drenched in sweat and freeze once you go back out to shred some powder.

What to bring?

Here are a few other items you might want to bring along on your trip:

Chap stick, sunscreen, extra cash, camelback, extra pair of clothes and socks, and foot/hand warmers

Elevation

As elevation increases expect to see a difference in degree from the base to the summit.  Most ski resorts in the southeast have about a 5-8 degree difference from base not including wind chill.  Be prepared to dress for the summit conditions.

New to snow

If you are completely new to snow and have questions or a slight worry about your first time snowboarding or skiing than hire a ski instructor!  The ski instructors job is to help teach you the skills needed for your first day in a fun and safe manner.  A few lessons with a ski instructor will give you a base to begin your first runs alone.  Lessons are also a great way to learn in a non-threatening environment with riders similar to you.  So if you have any doubts give it a lessons a go!

Safety

A key thing to anything  – always take baby steps!  Start slow and progress slowly and within your comfort range.  Don’t get persuaded to do anything you don’t feel comfortable doing.  It is okay to say “No”!  Always stay in control of your skis or snowboard and remember the skier in front of you has the right of way on the mountain.

If you have any questions or concerns leave a comment!

Thanks,

The Southern Summit Crew

IG: Southernsummitco/FB: Southern Summit Collection

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Baker’s Creek Preserve Mountain Bike Trails (Bell Helmets Mountain Bike Grant)

Located in south Knoxville, Baker’s Creek Preserve mountain bike trails are a part of a forty-mile trail system known as the South Loop Knoxville Urban Wilderness.  Baker’s creek preserve has approximately eight miles of trails which include three downhill flow trails, two pump tracks (concrete and dirt), children’s play area and (currently not built yet) a dirt jump area.

The three trails names are Cruze Valley (Green Trail), Barn Burner (Blue Trail), and Devil’s Race Track (Double black diamond).  These three trails are all super smooth and flowy, which is unusual to most of Tennessee’s trails.  These trails are full of wide berms, fast speed sections, and jumps for all skills levels.  Below is a breakdown of each of the three trails and its key features:

  • Cruze Valley – perfect for beginners, big wide berms with a few steep sections to help rider’s progress to more technical trails. The jumps on this trail include small long and low jumps which are all very rollable and don’t buck the riders.  The most impressive feature built on this trail is the huge S-berm located mid-way along the trail.  Other features found on this trail is a bunch of roller which will allow beginner riders learn to pump and jump.  These rollers can be connected for double gap jumps by more experienced riders.  More experience riders can also enjoy these rollers for manuals.
  • Barn burner – arguably the best trail at Baker’s Creek Preserve is playground for immediate riders and expert riders. This trail has a mix of big tables, step ups, step downs, alternate line gap jumps, and is super-fast.  Overall, this trail screams progression, and besides for the alternate line gap jumps can be rolled and by passed. This trail is home to big airs and huge trains.
  • Devil’s Racetrack – this is the trail that was won by the Bell Helmets award.  This downhill flow trail has huge gap jumps, an 8-foot wood step down bridge drop, 15-foot wall ride, and an alternative rock garden (rock shielded trail) with jumps.  Overall, this trail is high speed and has gaps of all sizes, this trail can be ridden without hitting the gaps.  I highly recommend if you can’t hit the jumps in the beginning of the trail or can’t clear all of the barn burner jumps to not head to this trail until you have completed those tasks.

 

These trails are absolutely awesome and I highly recommend you heading to this trail system.  Other trail systems worth the visit in the Knoxville area are Haw Ridge, Sharps Ridge, and Windrock Bike park.

 

Comment your requests of places we should visit or tips you would like to learn!

 

Thanks,

The Southern Summit Crew

IG:  SouthernSummitCo

FB: Southern Summit Collection

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Port St. Joe State Park – Florida, USA

 

Port St. Joe State Park

Many people claim areas as best kept secrets; however, Port St. Joe State Park is the gem of the best kept secrets.  The city of Port St. Joe is two hours east of Destin and two hours west of Tallahassee.  The city is a small beach town without the large condos and heavy tourism, leaving it with an abundance of natural beauty.

Port St. Joe State Park is the epitome of spring camping beach trip locations.  Port St. Joe is a peninsula with primitive and traditional campsites and cabins for all ranges of camping adventures. The primitive campsite area is spread out through the peninsula and is separated into 6-8 fire ring locations.  This allows for great space between campers and really gives you a deserted island “feel”.  The furthest campsite is several miles out and a back hike.

You want to make reservations in advanced or arrive at the park early to get a camping location.  Due to the limited number of primitive campsites – the park fills up at a rapid pace.

The park is beautiful with white beaches with huge sand dunes.  The sand dunes are approximately 40 feet high and with steep vertical walls of sand.

What activities are there to do?

  • Hike the peninsula – The peninsula is 7 miles long and has three different hiking trails. The trails are white sandy single-track.  This hike is moderately difficult due to the deep sand.
  • Canoeing the front or back bay – on our trip we brought a canoe and it was absolutely awesome to paddle around the back bay. We paddled out to sand dunes and had a sand “bar” party on it.
  • Explore the massive dunes – there are huge sand dunes on the beach completely awesome for exploring.  Do pay attentions to the signs regarding sustaining nature and not destroying habitats.  We are in their habitat so keep that in mind.
  • Fish – plenty of fishing on and off the state park property.
  • Sea Kayaking – similar to canoeing. This place has tons of places to kayak, one awesome workout would be navigating around the peninsula.
  • Swim – the back bay has tons of sea weed and aquatic vegetation so the front bay is where you want to hit a swim.  Be careful on the sea urchins – we saw tons while canoeing.
  • Skim boarding – perfectly smooth flat beaches make this place a perfect spot to session flat ground skim boarding.

Reminders

Animals –  rattlesnakes, copperheads, spiders, sea urchins, jelly fish are just a few animals to keep an eye out while exploring the beautiful white sandy beaches. This habitat is their so be mindful when you explore this beach.  You shouldn’t have an issue with wildlife when you are out on the beach; however, it’s always important to understand what lives where you explore.

Preserve the beauty – This is one of the last pure beaches in Florida not destroyed by tourist and loitering so treat it with respect.  Keep an eye on your trash and bag up whatever you bring in.

Comment your requests of places we should visit!

Thanks,

The Southern Summit Crew

IG:  SouthernSummitCo

 

Ozone Falls

Ozone Falls

Ozone Falls is arguably one of my favorite waterfalls in Tennessee.  It is 110 feet and is an awesome hidden jewel.  This gorgeous waterfall is located in Cumberland County, Tennessee which is in-between Nashville and Knoxville.  This waterfall isn’t super well known especially for new adventurers or average tourists which makes this place an awesome surprise especially since it is located directly on the side of a road. So what is awesome about this waterfall?

Well to start, this waterfall is directly next to a road and by just driving down the road you would never guess there would be such a huge waterfall in the area. This waterfall is massive and is surrounded by huge cliff walls around the base of the fall.  When arriving to the GPS coordinates you will find a dirt parking lot.  After parking, you just have to exit your car and head across the street.  There you will find the trail head.  There are only two well marked trails that lead you around the waterfall.  One trail heads left which leads you to the top of the water fall overlooking the massive hundred-foot water fall.  The other trail heads right and will lead you to the base of the waterfall.   This waterfall area is very much primitive so be careful hiking around the top of the waterfall.  Not paying attention could lead you to walk off the cliff or a single slip on a wet rock could end deathly.

This waterfall doesn’t require a long hike so it is good for those who are looking for a quick adventure on their road trip or for those who want to have a short day.   However, an important tip is to make sure you are physically able to hike down the steep slippery terrain.  The trail down to the base of the waterfall is extreme slick rock and requires good hiking shoes.

Make sure to plan your trip around the rainy season, if you plan to go during the summer it is possible you will have a poor stream.  So I recommend going late winter or early spring time to catch the full power of the waterfall.

If you go to the waterfall during the summer, there is a high possibility the watering hole on the bottom won’t be filled; however, it will allow you to stand under the waterfall.  Be careful walking under the waterfall, not just for slippery rocks but when I was under the fall many people say a ton of new born snakes in the rocks.  Most likely they were just banded water snakes however, a few people claimed they were copperheads.  Either way it is better to know and be prepared then not know and be surprised.

Additional activities to do while viewing this magnificent fall is to bring climbing gear to go rappelling.  Sadly, on my trip I wasn’t prepared but I saw several people rappelling the walls and I saw a couple lines that I wish I could have rappelled! Nevertheless, I will definitely go back!

Overall, this is an awesome stop or even day trip.  Comment your requests of places we should visit!

Thanks,

The Southern Summit Crew

IG:  SouthernSummitCo

FB: Southern Summit Collection

 

GPS Coordinates: 35.8814° N, 84.8103° W

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Respecting nature – a guide to begin adventuring – Part III

Respecting nature – a guide to begin adventuring – Part III

 

You and your friends have been shredding the slopes all day hitting pillows of pow or you have finished a tough scramble up the mountain.  The adrenaline is rushing through your veins and you are completely engulfed in the moment, you look down and notice a piece of trash laying there from a fellow adventure athlete such as yourself.  Instantly it takes away from this precious moment.

 

As an adventure athlete the number one rule to go by while performing these sports is to respect nature.   There are several good rules to follow:

 

  • A classic rule that should not even have to be said, “DON’T LITTER”! Please bring a baggy with you to put your wrappings inside.  I know a lot of your favorite power bars and energy gels can get sticky and start smelling; however, throwing them on the ground doesn’t only ruin experiences for other athletes but can endanger local wildlife.  An even more disgusting version of this is cigarette buds.  Not only does it make no sense why someone would rip a cig after a grueling athletic feat but smelling and seeing all the buds is absolutely gross. Cigarettes don’t magically disappear into the earth so please leave them at home or bring a baggy for them as well.
  • Don’t destroy nature. This one sadly needs to be said because lately there have been multiple incidents of people destroying iconic landmarks.  It is not only selfish but ignorant to destroy a beautiful creation that has been on earth for so long.  In a world that is getting smaller and more urbanized every special sight matters.
  • Don’t mess with wildlife, this is pretty self-explanatory but this isn’t just for your own safety. Certain species of animals will be harmed with any human contact.  Just a single tough to baby animals can lead to their mother neglecting them which will ultimately result in the animal dying.  Please take pictures and enjoy their world but unless you are hunting to eat or are an expert in wild life its best to watch from a distance.
  • Be careful with fire! This one is close to my heart because of the destruction of many forest near me in Tennessee and North Carolina.  Properly learn how to make campfires or use gas cooking sets.  Forest fires as seen in Gatlinburg, Tennessee can destroy not only wildlife and beautiful scenery but can spread to urbanized civilization outside of national parks and harm humans and destroy homes.

 

Comment your requests of places we should visit or tips you would like to learn!

 

Thanks,

The Southern Summit Crew

IG:  SouthernSummitCo

FB: Southern Summit Collection

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As you can see a few people didn’t follow the rules of leaving no trace.. thanks Angie!
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What happens when you play with fire and don’t respect it. 

How to progress quickly? – A guide to begin adventuring/adventure sports (part II)

You have been on a few backpacking trips, you have rushed down class 2 or 3 rapids, have hit a few drops and jumps on your mountain bike or you might have taken your first baby steps into your first adventure sport.  Whether you want to admit it or not its human nature to want to progress!  I am going to give you my tips to progress a rapid rate.  So listed below is  your guide from becoming a joe to a pro.

  • Fitness – no matter what adventure sport you are picking up from hiking to whitewater kayaking the best way to perform to your fullest is by creating a solid base fitness. This should be done in and out of the weight room.  I try to put in four weight room work outs a week as well as 3-5 days of cardio a week.  The cardio training is normally a mix of my adventure sport discipline as well as a different sport for variety.  During mountain bike season I might ride three times a week and the other two days of week of cardio will be long day hikes in the mountains.  Your fitness program should focus around strength training, core exercises and building your aerobic and anaerobic capacity.
  • Education – to become a “pro” I recommend developing your skills to mimic the pros. I recommend watching several pros in the sport you are trying to perfect and mimic their actions.  This might not be an exact formula but finding a common dominator between each pro and trying to mimic their actions will help you progress.  I recommend reading books and watching YouTube how to videos from several sources.  Each source will give slightly different tips by hearing different perspectives this can help you figure out what works for you.  An example would be a video I used to watch called “how to American bunny hop on a mountain bike” there are hundreds of videos of showing how to perform this action but after watching several different videos I only seemed to learn from one specific video because the instructor described it in a way that I personally could understand.
  • Mentorship – find someone who is more experienced than you. By spending time with this person you will develop your skills.  Your mentor will give you tips that only someone with years of experience will know.  They will also know your local scene and will be able to give you warnings if there are any dangers or great secret spots in your area.
  • Practice – no matter how much you watch and learn the skills you want to perform you have to go out there and practice. Just as the old saying goes practice makes perfect. Video yourself and watch what you are doing and compare this to what you have been watching the pros do.
  • Time – once again no matter how much you learn and how much you practice you do.  Some skills just take time and experience.  Experience, that only time can teach you, will help you stomp the jump you have been dreaming of or the mountain you have been looking at climbing.
  • Equipment – I can’t say this enough (there will be a separate blog discussing this topic in the future) but purchasing the correct equipment can save you time, money and frustration.  Do your research and talk to experienced individuals in the sport to understand the gear you need.  You need to figure out what you want to achieve in the sport and buy accordingly.
  • Learn with someone of the same level – learning with someone of similar experience can create a bond that is hard to achieve with a mentor.  Learning with someone of the same level can make a life long friendship and a team.  By struggling with someone  and enduring the challenges that you face will help the experience be more fun and not seem as hard.   This teamwork can also create friendly competition and help push each other to progress faster.  Maybe one of you is better at a skill than the other naturally?  Well being able to explain to each other the skill can help the teams progression.  img_5461

How to travel for cheap? – A guide to begin adventuring part I

So you see a North Face commercial or a red bull video and you want to take a stab at going out in nature to start your first adventure. Whether you are wanting to learn to kayak, snowboard, mountain bike, mountaineer, backpack or camp this series will help you learn to plan, prepare, and provide tips and tricks to going out and conquering your first trips.  This series will be in no order however; I believe each blog will give insight only provided by experience.

This first blog is going to be about adventuring for cheap.  A lot of people see our photos on Instagram (@southernsummitco) and ask me how I afford to go on all these awesome trips. I have been able to go on several 4-5 day trips with only spending a 40-50 dollars. Whether you are a college student or just stingy, here are my tips for adventuring cheap.

1) Go on an adventure with a group.  Going on an adventure with a group is important for several reasons which I will talk about in later blogs.  (i.e. mentorship, safety) However, when you go in a group you can cut costs by splitting bills.  For example, if you go on an adventure 5 hours away go with four people and split the gas four ways. Side note don’t forget to hook up the driver for allowing you to use their car, they will appreciate it and will be more willing to do it again.

2) Split food costs and go to the grocery store before your trip.  Bulk buying food and making homemade snacks will cut major costs.  Buying food in advance will normally help out due to the fact most awesome places are no where near civilization or the prices are raised due to being in a tourist location.

3) Rent gear from your college or local stores. If you are going on a trip and you are in college try going to local rec center and renting gear.  It is a good way to try new sports as well as get to use gear that might not be used as frequent such as canoes or whitewater kayaks.  This is actually how I got started in to whitewater, shout out to my local university rec center!

img_54084) Don’t buy excessive gear (a future blog will explain what is necessary to bring on your first adventures).  Just because the newest gadget for your trail adventure seems like a must buy stick to the essentials when you get started. A mistake my father and I did was go to the store and go on an expensive shopping spree from random gadget to solar panel charges, was the stuff cool well, yes.. However, I barely use any of it because one its to heavy and two I prefer not to worry about technology besides for my camera when I am out on an adventure.

5) Car camping and backpacking – if you are going to a place to do an activity such as mountain bike or whitewater kayak.  Car camp or back pack at a local national forest or state park.  No sense to get a hotel if you can help it plus the best memories come from late night adventures with friends in the woods.

If you can think of any other ways to cut costs on an adventure leave a comment below!

-Southern Summit Crew

IG: southernsummitco

 

Chimney Tops – Great Smoky National Park

Chimney Tops Trail is a 3.8 mile RT trail that has 1,487 feet of elevation gain and is absolutely one of the most amazing, convenient, and addicting trails in the national park.

This trail is a must-do for beginner hikers and will even make the most experienced hiker smile.  I love this trail because it’s convenient to get to and the views are outstanding.  This trail is located outside of Gatlinburg, TN, to get to the trail you will pass Sugarlands Visitor Center and follow Newfound Gap Road approx. 7 miles.  You will see the trail head on the right side and you won’t miss it.  Cars will be parked in the parking lot no matter the time of the year or day.

This trail is action packed from the start.  You begin by passing multiple rivers – the first river passing is a perfect place for a mid-summer dip after this hike.  After a few river passings, you will immediately start the climb.  It will begin a moderate incline however, the fun doesn’t start till you pass a fork on the trail that leads to the Appalachian trail.   Once you see the sign that leads to the AT, you will begin the steep climb.  The climb for experienced hikers won’t be too crazy, however, for those who enjoy hiking in polo shirts, flip flops, and khakis without water this will be challenging! (and yes I have seen all of these out on the trail)

The climb is practically a long stair case, I have heard it referenced as the stair way to hell and the stair way to heaven.  I guess it depends on how in shape you are.

Once you finish climbing the stair case,2 you are practically there.  You will make several twists and turns around the ridge and get quick peeks at the beautiful view you have been working towards.  These views will push you to get to the top without a doubt!

At the summit the true fun begins.  The top is a unique rocky peak that gives its name, Chimney Tops.  The Chimneys are rocks that line the ridge and connects several peaks together.   The lower part of the summit allows beginner hikers to enjoy views without having to scramble the rocks to get to the summit for 360 degree panoramic views.

However, most hikers take on the challenge of scrambling up the rock face and enduring the exposure to reach these jaw dropping views.  If you are able to handle heights this won’t be an issue at all. On the other hand, the exposure and wind for inexperience hikers can make this seem like Everest.  At the summit, you will have great views of several peaks such as Mt. Leconte.

For true thrill seekers and experienced hikers, you can continue past the first summit and follow the manway across the ridge.  To maneuver this ridge, I highly, highly, highly recommend having someone who has done the ridge before with you.  This ridge is very narrow with extreme exposure.  Several areas have cliff drops of 100+ feet. Once you cross the ridge you will be on the second peak, this is a truly special area due to its limited access compared to the main peak.

Warning Notes:  If there is a chance of rain at all, you don’t want to be up on Chimney Tops.  The rock will become so slick that it will almost be suicidal to attempt crossing the ridge or decent.  Don’t attempt to climb this summit if you are afraid of heights, have balance issues or have little to no experience in scrambling.  Weather in the mountains is always changing and can lead into dangerous situations quickly – life threatening.  When doing any hike it is important to be prepared by having water, food, correct gear and knowledge of weather and wildlife. Additionally, after climbing the trail there are several fun activities and great places to eat in Gatlinburg. To experience a full Smokey Mountain trip, I highly recommend renting a cabin with your closest friends and taking multiple day hikes. Good luck on your adventures and never stop exploring! – Southern Summit Crew

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High Falls Park, Alabama – Alabama’s Best Kept Secret

High Falls Park

969 Co Rd 144, Grove Oak, AL 35975

High Falls Park AKA Alabama’s best kept secret. Okay maybe that’s not its full title, but it should be. Located north of Lake Guntersville, past wide spaces of farm land on a single dirt road, a clear water swimming hole sits under 50 foot cliffs with a running water fall. Whether you’re a family of five or cliff jumper of one the park is free of admission to let your day adventurer run free (the park closes at sundown folks).

On the other hand if you’re not ready to spark your cliff jumper, thrill seeker, stomach in your throat side, this piece of Alabama jungle still holds hidden treasures to locals and visitors alike. From rope swings to nature trails, High Falls Park is a great place to bring your family and friends of all ages. Note that if you bring your kiddos there isn’t a lifeguard on duty and there does take upper body strength to climb up back onto the rocks from the water. In the chance if you’ve brought a non-swimmer, the park (along with the rest of Alabama) provides opportunities to scavenge down natural trails, relax by sandy beaches or even grill out for the afternoon.

Last but not least. The people. In this secluded part of paradise, the locals make this environment as special as it is. While they’re no professionals, the local cliff divers certainly put on a show for visitors and inspire the thrill seekers there. Keep in mind that there are plenty of spots to jump but like anything worth it, it takes time and skill. Depending on your skill level, there are chances for rock climbing, double barrels and even a belly flop here and there.

If you pack anything double check that you have a camera before you go. I don’t care if it’s on your IPhone or Nikon digital, be sure to freeze this place in time with any visual device. The most interesting part about historical “go-tos” is that they can’t promise us that they will always be there. So, embrace every moment, leave only foot prints and take as many memories possible.

If you have any questions or comments, please don’t hesitate to contact me through site. Happy diving!

-Kody

IG: SouthernSummitCo

About Southern Summit

Local. Its familiar definition has never been all too familiar to me. While the South has always been a moment of familiarity, I’ve always been a traveler of sorts due to a military family background. Eighteen countries and ten years later, I feel the most at home in nature.
From the snowy tops of the Alps to cold waters of South France, I have been given the opportunity to travel the world more than your average 21 year old. However, the southern summits hold a special place for me. Whether it’s my carabineer, climbing backpack or scarred up shins, I believe they have a story to tell of a south not fully represented.
Hidden from the treetops of the pines or tourists wandering eyes, the South has genuine adventure to offer to locals and visitors, but like anything worth it, it takes time to search for it. Enter the Southern Summit blog. As a part of this journey, I want to take you to the most exotic and beautiful expeditions across the Southeastern United States. While some areas may be familiar, others may be hidden pieces located below the Mason Dixon line. All the while I want to share my passion for the outdoors with you in all its forms. Using a camera and my words, I want to showcase the Southeast’s efforts of making its outdoor scene a better and brighter place through conservationist efforts or a local mountain biker.
We all have a story to tell, but it’s a matter of giving yourself a voice and stretching beyond your comfort zone. I hope that you will follow me on this journey as I reach to the summit of understanding of what outdoor-loving locals in the Southeast have to offer beyond the beaten path.