Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Our fourth field trip of the year.

This morning we took a little excursion to Audubon Acres.  We arrived around 9:30am but the visitor's center was still closed so we hiked over to the swinging bridge along some beautiful woodland paths.  All along the way were signs explaining how the Cherokee Indians used various of the trees.  We got to see the Cherokee "alphabet" naming the trees.  Each symbol represents a sound, invented by Sequoyah in the early 1800's.

We then returned around 10 to see if the visitor's center was open yet.  No luck.  A man was mowing the lawns but paid us no attention and no-one was around asking us for the entrance fee, so after sitting around for a bit and playing some frisbee, we took a photo of the map on the wall so we'd know where we were, and set off for the Little Owl Village.  We took a side path around to the bridge (fortuitously through a gnome's village - wink, wink); crossed the bridge again and hiked along the South Chickamauga Creek towards the Little Owl Village.  More than half-way there, we realised we wouldn't have time to do the full loop in the time alloted and had to turn around.  Unfortunately only one (civilized) way to cross the creek so we couldn't cut across to the main area.  Nevertheless, with many exciting gnome finds, the trip was interesting and the time and hiking passed quickly.  Before we knew it the bridge came back into sight and a little later we were back at the car for lunch.  After reading the story of how Sequoyah invented the Cherokee syllabary system, we headed back for orchestra, arriving 6 minutes early!

Audubon Acres is a Cherokee heritage site and linked to the Trail of Tears.
A total of about 4 miles of hiking trails

The swinging bridge
Looking for gnomes
Ah - found one of their umbrellas

We had some science lessons along the way.
Towards Little Owl Village, we come across Peter Rabbit.
And evidence of a beaver's work.
A gnome's house decorations
A precarious tree on the edge of the South Chickamauga Creek. (the tree roots being an ideal gnome's house,we noted)
Taking a little break
Of other note, it was a stinking hot and muggy day (even though cool in the morning)!  Whew!  When is summer ever going to end?!  (Rumours are that it will end this weekend).

We're praying for you, Mom, and hope the shingles go away soon!!

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