May 22, 2008
California : Big Sur : Limekiln State Park
To Limekiln Falls we go……
We went to Limekiln on Wednesday, the day after my vacation sick day. I still wasn’t feeling all that hot, but I couldn’t stand to waste another day sleeping. Once we started hiking I immediately felt like I had been bulldozed by this horribly unwelcome nauseas feeling which engulfed my feeble body. I sound like I’m being dramatic, but really, I felt so weak – it was ridiculous! At this point, I wasn’t even hiking, I was pretty much dragging myself through the woods. Good thing it didn’t stop me from taking my photos though.
One thing that I absolutely loved about this trail were the coastal redwoods. Even though I felt like death warmed over, walking through this enchanted forest gave me reason to keep chugging along. This forest had so much character, from the downed trees, to the clover-covered ground that lined the trails path……….it was straight out of a “Lord of the Rings” movie.
Cody pointed out, as well questioned my fascination with bridges…….I can’t remember what mumbo-jumbo answer I gave him at the time…..but from the very first time I hiked a trail here in NC, I was hooked. Maybe bridges symbolize a connection in which I can understand, or more literally, that it’s the juncture itself that I relate to……..then again, maybe I like them because I don’t have to wade through water to get from one side to the other?!?! Either way, he was just wondering, why the heck I have to take a photo of every single one we cross!! haha
It was such a sunny day. A photographers nightmare, really. I would have given anything to have hiked this trail on a foggy day…….then it would have been doubly magical. I feared that my photos weren’t going to turn out the way my eyes relayed the scene to my brain. Your in camera technique will only get you so far on a blindingly sunny day. Looking at the photo on the tiny little screen is not a true representation of what it will really look like once you see it on a computer screen for the first time. My laptop would only allow enough time to unload my memory cards before I needed to recharge the battery, so I never knew what my photos looked like until the night before we were leaving (at Jimmy’s house). I was really surprised at how well these shots turned out, with nearly no post-processing. Go figure, the group I would peg as my worst set of photos, end up being some of my favorites?!?!
Above is the path leading up to Limekiln Falls. The climb to the falls was a very gentle grade, and required very little effort (even for a sicko). The creek crossings did require some agile maneuvering at certain points, but it kept things interesting! Overall it was a mere .7 miles to get to the falls. Before you realize you’re near the end, you pretty much come to a screeching halt when the 100-foot wall comes in to view. It was incredible. I remember telling Cody, that this was my most favorite waterfall…..EVER! Even better than the McWay Falls, which was pretty spectacular too, but this one was better because of how close you could get. It must have been those negative ions giving me that feeling of euphoria……..
The park’s name comes from the actual kilns that were used to produce lime in the 19th century. The Rockland Lime and Lumber Company would load the towers of the kilns with limestone and use redwood lumber to stoke fires at their bases to purify the rock before it was hauled out of the canyon and down to the coast where ships were waiting. The lime was eventually used in cement and other products.
We were very close to skipping the actual limekiln’s themselves because I just wanted to lay down. Thankfully I sucked it up, and trekked a little further to catch a glimpse of these rusty towers. To get to the kilns, we took a separate hike off the main trail once we backtracked from the waterfall. I can just imagine the bustling activity taking place there day-to-day, way back when. Big Sur harbors a lot of history, that I haven’t even begun to fathom, but I’m learning more and more as I delve deeper into the trip.
Would you believe that there is actually MORE?! I mean, really, is anybody tired of seeing all of this stuff yet?!
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