Thursday, April 7, 2016

More For Little Rock Arkansas

While waiting for our RV to get fixed we ventured out to see some more of the surrounding area and visited Pinnacle Mountain State Park which is just outside Little Rock Arkansas.

The cone shaped peak of the mountain raises above the Arkansas River valley over one thousand feet with two trails available to take you to the summit.  We decided to hike up the West Summit Trail which is 1 1/2 miles long round trip.

West Summit Trailhead.
The sign did state that the trail was steep, rugged, and required strenuous walking, and I would say that it was 100% accurate.  Once you get to the face, it almost requires climbing.  After we made it to the summit, I was thinking maybe it was too much for our five year old daughter and Misty, since she was in the early stages of pregnancy (13 weeks).
Arriving at the West Summit Trailhead.

So far the trail does not look too awfully hard.

So up the mountain we go.  It was a beautiful day for hiking, but the closer we got to the top of the mountain, the stronger the gusts of wind got.  There was a couple of times I questioned our decision of climbing the mountain and wondered if maybe we should turn back, but the kids would not have it.
Ian, Ethan, Avery, Tia, Chloe, and Courtney playing on the rocks while climbing up to the summit.

At this point we are about half way up Pinnacle Mountain to the summit.

The trail is starting to get steeper.

Misty is taking it like a trooper and brining up the rear.

Onward and upward!

It just keeps going.

A beautiful view of Lake Maumelle on the Arkansas River.
At this point we were .3 miles from the summit, but I was thinking maybe we bit off more than we could chew, but we were so close, so we kept trucking on.  Plus the kids were burning off lots of energy, which is always good.
You Are Here

Tia, Courtney, and Chloe taking a break.

Courtney, Tia, Ethan, Don, Ian, Chloe, and Avery.

As we got closer to the top it became apparent that we had our work cut out for us.  What on earth were we thinking?  This is way too much for us to handle!  Push on we must!
Courtney is still smiling.

So are Tia and Chloe while taking a break.

The boys are still climbing and getting too far ahead of us.

Courtney and Misty bringing up the rear.

As we get closer to the top, we can see the parking lot below.

Here is the view from the parking lot up to where the previous picture was taken.
As you can see in the next set of pictures, the trail is getting a lot steeper and treacherous.  Its not like we are scaling Mount Everest, but we do have to be watchful of the kids and where we step, because a fall up here would not end well.

The wind was also blowing which could make you lose your balance and fall which would have been a bad thing.  The unexpected gusts were the worst, because they would catch you off guard.

We were lucky that it was early spring and not hot enough yet for snakes.  I would have to figure they would love all the rocks and if we saw one, then the hike would be over because Misty and Courtney would both probably have heart attacks.
The closer we get to the top, the steeper it gets.

Courtney is holding on so the wind does not blow her away.
Now, in the picture below you have a drop off on the right and the steep trail on the left.  While navigating the mountain, we look over and some of the kids, to include Chloe, were climbing up this narrow ridge to the crest.  I thought Misty was going to have the baby right then and there.

After I recovered from my heart attack, I politely asked the kids to keep to the trail so as not to fall off the mountain.  Of course by politely I mean on the inside, because, you probably could have heard me a mile away screaming at the kids. 

If you will notice the individual at the top of the picture next to the pine tree, you can get a better idea of just how big and steep it is.
The ridge up to the crest of the mountain.

This is what was on the other side of where they were climbing.
The face of the mountain were the kids were climbing next to..

Needless to say, our hearts did skip a beat when we saw where they were climbing.  The thought process of "What in the heck are we doing?" kicked in again, but we are so close to the summit, we just can not quit now.  I've always heard that what does not kill you only makes you stronger or stupider?  I'm not quite sure now.

Finally after a good bit of climbing we made it to the saddle between the two peaks of Pinnacle Mountain.
One of the two peaks on top of Pinnacle Mountain.

The view from top of the mountain.
Avery, Chloe, Dad, Ian, Ethan, Tia, and Courtney on top of Pinnacle Mountain.

Looking down towards the parking lot of the park.

Courtney, Avery, Ethan, Tia, Chloe, Dad, and Ian standing on top of the World.

Don and Misty posing for a well deserved picture on top of Pinnacle Mountain.

The kids taking a break on top of the mountain.

Taking it easy on a natural couch on top of the mountain.

A pantographic view from the top of Pinnacle Mountain.
Now starts the trek back down the mountain, which was harder on us than the climb up.  It was like going down a set of a thousand steps.

Tia and Chloe starting back down the mountain.
All in all it was a good day out with fun and exercise.  No one was hurt while climbing up or down the mountain except for maybe some sore muscles the next day.

Probably the most fun the kids had though was playing at the playground at the bottom of the trails in the park.  We have no idea where the kids had the extra energy stored since our legs felt like jello afterwards and we felt too exhausted to take another step!

Kids having fun playing at the playground.

Once again we are so blessed to be able to see all the places we do as a family and know there are many more places to see before we are done.  God is good to us and keeps us safe in our travels.

We are also blessed with all of the people we meet along the way.  We have met so many good families and individuals on our journey and hope to meet more in the future.

So we survived our Pinnacle Mountain expedition and lived to tell about it.  It is someplace you need to visit if you ever have the time in Little Rock. 

Safe travels and God bless you and all those you love.

Don, Misty, and Kids...
States we have visited so far.

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