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Why geezers shouldn’t take selfies: Gail and Kurt in the Grassy Hill Natural Area
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Before things turned muddy: Gail headed up the Andy Layne Trail.
January 1. Star Trail and Loop Trail over Mill Mountain to South Roanoke and back using Monument Trail and Star Trail. 7.5 miles.
In the spirit of Blue Ridge Country’s new 'The Good Walk' department (replacing the long-running 'The Hike'), I’m working to be less self-conscious about hikes/walks that include at least a smattering of the urban (and some a lot more). This walk, undertaken for the second time, is a classic of the kind, incorporating as it does good wood trails, views and a few blocks along city streets. Those city streets in this case delivering us to the eatery Fork in the Alley for a good lunch before heading back over Roanoke’s in-city mountain, albeit using the short-cut Monument Trail around the side.
January 7. Through the snow to a favorite restaurant. 5 miles
Hostess/owner Maristane Rocha is always gracious and reinforcing about our showing up on foot to Luigi’s, her wonderful Italian Restaurant.
January 14. Most of the Grassy Hill Natural Area Trails. 6 miles.
Our Saturday trips to nearby Rocky Mount for live music at the Harvester Performance Center nearly always include a pre-dinner hike, and usually in the easy, empty Grassy Hill Natural Area Preserve, where we had lunch on the eastern-end bench rather than our usual western end stop. At the Harvester, the Subdudes were wonderful as always.
January 21. Tinker Cli . . and back. 7 miles.
The late start, the muddier-than-we’ve-seen Andy Layne Trail and the shortness of the day had us stop about 15 minutes shy of the cliffs to have lunch on the set of eastern-side rocks just before the last climb.
January 28. Downtown Roanoke to Breckinridge Elementary and back. 6.2 miles.
A busy weekend pushed our hike not only to urban, but also to a basketball game, where grandson Tyler had maybe the best game of his young life, hoisting up threes, stealing off the dribble, diving onto the floor and generally turning his face red and his hair wet in all-out effort every instant he’ was on the floor. Back downtown, we had a good lunch at Wasabi’s.