A few days ago The Nomads visited the Hendersonville Antique Toy Museum. After the museum, we still had daylight. You know what that means. We had more exploring to do. Leaving the Toy Museum there were signs stating that we were not far from The Carl Sandburg Home. It took about 3 seconds to decide where our next stop was and off we went.
Carl Sandburg was an American poet, writer and editor. He won 3 Pulitzer Prizes; two for poetry and one for his biography of Abraham Lincoln. His family home was just outside of Hendersonville in a little town called Flat Rock. It is managed by The National Forestry Service and is designated as a National Historic Site.
We pulled up to the locale unsure of what we would find. We parked and ventured on down a path to the map of the place. We saw that this National Historic Site, that was once Carl Sandburg’s home and farm, is 264 acres in size, has lakes, streams, hiking trails, over 50 structures (including an operational goat barn) and the peaks of two mountains (Little Glassy Mountain and Glassy Mountain). We hit exploration gold.
Just as we started our trek, we had to cross a bridge that also acted as a dam with a spillover. One of the Nomads realized that the water coming out of the spillover began to freeze below and was working its way back up in the form of ice. There was no easy or optimal viewpoint to capture this, so, I did what we often do. I traveled off path, down the stream bank, through bushes and out onto limbs that were over the stream. While hanging onto a limb with one hand and our digital camera in the other, I found the optimal viewpoint. And I was able to return uninjured and dry. Both were bonuses.
We hiked up the hill to a paved road that took us to the main house. This house was positioned to look over a gentle sloping grassy hill with the lake at the bottom of it. The view was a very pleasant and calming one.
From there we meandered from one building to the next wondering what they all were. Some looked like garages, sheds, barns and even a house or two. There was no literature or signs anywhere, so we made up logical stories among ourselves about what each was. That was, until we came upon the goat barn. There was no mistaking what this place was. Baby goats and nanny goats were in and around the barn. They were a playful bunch. Two old billy goats were on the other side of the path in their own pens; not so playful.
We left the frozen pond and traversed a meandering trail that went up through tunnels of trees, down a slope and then up the backside of Little Glassy Mountain. It was a nice nature hike to get to the pinnacle. The sun began to set and we were still a ways from the parking lot. The place was supposed to close at dusk. So, we began to head back and we made pretty good time, until we found a long patch of ice.
The boys tried to slide down the ice on pieces of log. They twisted and turned their way down the ice by sliding their feet back and forth. And then, finally, they all tried to walk back up. I got two of the three of them on video. Noah went first and after much slipping and struggling, finally made it. Then Ethan came behind him, who I caught on video. His struggle was even greater than Noah’s, which I attribute to weight difference as Ethan is heavier than Noah. Then, the funny really kicked in. Trevor tried it and walked up the ice like it was a sidewalk then gave us a look like “what’s the problem?”
Of course, after this I tried it (not on video) and after a few slips and the brief vision of me doing the splits and landing in a very painful and uncomfortable manner, I decided that the triumph was not worth the potential cost of this one.