Sunday, January 17, 2016

January 14, 2016 - Moore Cove and Little Moore Cove Falls, Pisgah National Forest

Weather and chores have kept us in for a week now, so it was time to get out - somewhere.  We picked Moore Cove Falls hoping there would be some interesting ice formations.  Night time temperatures have been in the 20's, but day temps have been in the 40's, so it was iffy on the ice.

along the Moore Cove Falls trail

The hike to Moore Cove Falls was fairly uneventful.  There was only one other vehicle in the parking area when we got there and we passed those folks coming back so we knew we'd have the waterfall to ourselves.  It's a fairly easy hike of less than a mile, and passes through a very nice section of the forest.  More info on the trail location can be found on my site here.  Anyone that's been on this hike will recognize the large boulder along the trail in the above picture.  We passed some frost heave at the first of the trail and I almost stopped for a picture.  When we passed more of it and a large tree down over the trail, I had to stop.

frost heave
tree down in the trail

Moore Cove Falls had pretty good flow today.  I imagine it was gushing a couple of weeks ago with all of the heavy rain we had in the area.  Today was a bright sunny day which is harsh light for shooting waterfalls, but the sun was in a good spot for making a rainbow in the spray of the falls.  Even though the first 2 shots were from the same angle, the rainbow doesn't show up in the first because I had the polarizing filter turned for maximum effect.  Turning in to minimize the effect will bring out the rainbow, but will also lose the effect it has on making the sky bluer and cutting the glare from the foliage and wet rocks.

There wasn't as much ice as I had hoped for, so we opted not to go behind the waterfall today and headed over to Little Moore Cove Falls instead.  Most of the people that visit Moore Cove Falls have no idea that this waterfall is there.  It's hidden back in the next cove over just a very short distance away.  Little Moore Cove can first be seen from the old trail on the other side of the campsite, but there's a bit of a scramble to get over for a better view.  There's a lot of clutter at the base of the falls that isn't going anywhere soon, but it's still a charming waterfall.

There were some nice icicles at this waterfall that were close enough down so we could shoot them.  That's what Cindy is doing in the next shot, then a shot of the icicles below that.

After we left Little Moore Cove, we did some exploring up the trail.  This trail isn't on any of the maps, but still has faded blue blazes indicating it was a used trail at some point in the past.  It passes several smaller waterfalls along the unnamed creek Little Moore Cove Falls is on, then connects on to some older logging roads and then FR477.  Below is some video from the 2 waterfalls.


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