“Under a spreading chestnut tree, the village smithy stands …” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Adventures with Pepper: Day 32 Continued
The Blue Ridge Parkway is not just about the fantastic landscape, it’s also about the people who made or make the Blue Ridge Mountains, which stretch from Pennsylvania to Georgia, their home.
My companion on the journey, , besides Pepper, was ranger and naturalist William Lord’s mile-marker guide published in 1982 by the American Chestnut Foundation. The American Chestnut, whose numbers in the Appalachian Mountains once numbered about three billion, were decimated by a blight in the early 1900s. Today one would be hard pressed to find a hundred mature American chestnuts. The parkway, however, is home to a few immature trees as the battle to save them continues. Few chestnut trees today grow to more than about 20 feet before the blight fugal disease take them. The people working to save this species, like the chestnut foundation, is part of today’s story along the parkway.
One person from the past was a miller named Rake, who built a small pond to have ready water for his grist mill. His advertising gimmick was to allow customers to fish in the pond while they waited for their meal to be ground. I’m glad I stopped at this small, peaceful place, because the Marby Mill, the show mill of the parkway just up the road a bit, was too crowded for me to park Gypsy Lee, and she ain’t big
I was forced to pass this stopping spot up and continue on to Meadows of Dan, where I would spend the night.
Book Report: I’m in Nashville now, and while I’ve stuck around for a few days, I’ve taken tours and listened to country music, and Travels with Maggie got stuck again.
Bean’s Pat: Marc and Angel http://tinyurl.com/95gpobj 10 Ways to Live Life with No Regrets. I’m not fond of promoting big blogs like this, but the advice these two hand out is just too good to pass up. I read their blog a lot.